How the hell do they keep doing this? Seriously, only A24 can make a movie called “Everything Everywhere All At Once” and actively get away with the film being messy as a positive factor. Not only that, this very well might just be, not only the best multiverse movie ever…..
…..I think I found my film of the year already.
With a comical whimsical ambience laced alongside so many salivating tender narrative bones to boot, Daniels takes so many completely different styles that rarely work together in the past and squeegees the most important elements from each genre to give this multilayered inventive project the scope and scale it calls upon. In this manner, without having to physically force the puzzle pieces to fit, they lean into the absurdity of the worlds they have created, always reaching for the most outlandish possibilities and never playing it safe while carrying a therapeutic energy in their direction throughout.
We have a frenetic stream of dialogue that somehow keeps pace with breakneck action sequences, which are both delightfully wacky but exquisitely executed, the swapping color palettes help make every select scene feel as surreal and acid-inducing as possible with a pat of beauty, the narrative manages to be exciting and outrageously wild but reasonable within its own multiverse contexts and how every single frame of unconventional cinematography and editing is in natural equilibrium is beyond me.
The production design is boundless, yet united by a lighthearted vision, sound design and music symbolically convey psychology through silence, volume, and echoes, the multifaceted effects contribute to the ambitious atmosphere and all the performances are frothingly salivating: Michelle Yeoh proved herself as quite the versatile actress in a role that asks her for too much all at one time but finally allows to reach her full potential as a performer. However, Stephanie Hsu VERY NEARLY has her beat with a kaleidoscope of colorful personalities and portraying the beating heart of the entire 2 1/2 hour experience.
Sure, its initial stance on life, relationship ties and generational trauma is something a lot of people are getting sick and tired of seeing just play out but beneath all the antic cleverness and metaphysical brain farts, there’s sincere, generous beauty and dexterity to how this story is played out. Not only splicing together so many visual metaphors to show us how a woman’s choices affected her life while glimpsing all the lives she could’ve had, it actually focuses on the chaos each life lives as a constant stream of good and bad moments to tie back to what’s considered the most important: human fragility. There’s something so nimble, sly and devastating about seeing how literally EVERY SINGLE moment of your life can curtail your momentum or truly give your life purpose, especially with its emphasis on just how powerful love, family, doubt, loneliness and regret can be.
And yet those very same kaleidoscopic beats is something EVERYONE can relate to even more when the arcs are earned and the plot devices are utilized to their fullest: persistence and living life in spite of seemingly insurmountable odds and the inevitably that all things, both good and bad, will eventually come to a crashing end when the curtains on our lives close. What can be more soul-destroying then that?
This is an artists wet dream, the Mona Lisa of A24’s collection, the Titanic, the Moby Dick, the platinum record to show off to everyone at every place at Everywhere, a movie that represents A24 itself and everything that Hollywood is currently missing. A modern cinematic masterpiece so earth-shattering, I almost actively cried during the runtime. I know my family needs this movie; we all need this movie.