Hello film fans! Welcome to Oscar weekend! It’s Slick Dungeon here and I’m back to review another Oscar best picture nominee. This one stars Michelle Yeoh, Stephanie Hsu, Ke Hey Quan and Jamie Lee Curtis. I am, of course, talking about Everything Everywhere All at Once. There will be some spoilers in this review so if that bothers you, do something odd, think of an alternate universe where you have seen the film, and come on back to read the review.
While there are a number of worthy contenders for best picture this year, Everything Everywhere All at Once got the most nominations of any film. It’s also widely considered to be a frontrunner for best picture. The movie centers around Evelyn Quan Wang, a mother who runs a laundromat with her husband Waymond. The couple have a daughter named Joy and Evelyn also takes care of her father Gong Gong. Evelyn’s world is swirling with activity from the needs of her clients to her husband and daughter and to top it all off she is being audited by the IRS.
On what would be an otherwise normal day, Waymond suddenly switches personalities and tells Evelyn she has to help him save every universe in existence from someone named Jobu Tupaki. To do that she has to go into a bit of a trance state and think of a universe where she made a slightly different decision somewhere along the way which leads to her having a new skill. So, for example if she wants to fight, she has to think of a universe where she learned martial arts and she instantly knows it. It’s sort of a comedic version of The Matrix but with a middle-aged Chinese American immigrant as the star instead of Keanu Reeves.
The plot is a bit hard to completely follow but there are tons of moments of comedy and introspection here. There’s everything from a universe where Evelyn is an internationally recognized singer to one where humans evolved with hot dogs for fingers. And there is a ton of action in this movie. This has incredible fight scenes, including the best use of a fanny pack in a movie ever.
Michelle Yeoh and Ke Hey Quan shine as the parents of Joy (Stephanie Hsu). Hsu herself puts in a solid performance as at turns a hero and villain in the film.
For what would be considered a sci-fi comedy action thriller this movie touches on a lot of subjects. It speaks about meaning in the world, about what it is to be kind, about how we relate to one another, and about the generational divide.
It’s not a perfect movie but it gets close. It’s bucket loads of fun and surprisingly emotional.
If you’re a fan of fun sci-fi comedies or if you are a Michelle Yeoh fan, you can’t ask for a better movie than this one. I don’t know if it will win the best picture but if it does it would be deserving of the title.