Everything Everywhere All at Once is one of the best films ever made – watch it immediately
I want to live in a world where Jamie Lee Curtis has hotdogs for fingers
Every once in a while, a film comes along that changes your life. Everything Everywhere All at Once is one of those films. My life will be from now on in two halves: before I sat in the cinema and spent two and a half hours in absolute awe, and after. It’s a hard film to put into words about how special it is, but I’m going to try my best. Just know that it’s a film you need to see – a film that needs to be watched on the biggest screen, with the biggest speakers. Here’s why Everything Everywhere All at Once has gone straight into my favourite films of all time, why I think it’s one of the best films ever made and why you need to drop everything, go to the cinema and watch it immediately.
What the hell is it?
Written, directed and produced by Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinhart (known collectively as “The Daniels”), Everything Everywhere All at Once is an absurdist thrill ride through multiverses. In a culture where the multiverse is the new pulled pork, rest assured this is the film that deserves your attention more than another blockbuster currently showing in cinemas does. Michelle Yeoh stars as Chinese-American Evelyn Wang, a woman whose family is on the cusp of breaking down and whose launderette is struggling as she’s swamped by a looming tax audit. Jamie Lee Curtis stars as the tax auditor, Deirdre, and she is highly iconic. Of course. Everyone in this film is acting their tits off at all times.
It’s a comedy. It’s a martial arts film. It’s absurdist, it’s existential. It is everything, everywhere, all at once.
What makes it so special?
Everything Everywhere All at Once is a ginormous film. It’s a film that asks you to stretch your mind open exponentially and endlessly, to imagine that everything is possible and questions whether because of this does nothing really matter or does everything matter even more. These are big questions, and when a film is reaching that widely it could easily be swallowed up by its own scope. But this is no ordinary film, and The Daniels are no ordinary filmmakers. It is consistently outstanding, consistently exceptional.
How does it manage it? By never losing sight of what Everything Everywhere All at Once is really about. This is a film about family, about culture. It doesn’t matter how many universes we go through, the film never loses sight that this film is focussed on the mother / daughter relationship between Evelyn and her daughter Joy – and what acceptance means. Without giving too much away, the way that Everything Everywhere All at Once handles a queer storyline is something that had me sobbing in my seat. I don’t think there’s a queer person in the audience who would not be able to resonate profoundly with a storyline that is so moving. Your child is never your enemy, even when you have nothing in common and are at war throughout multiverses.
Jamie Lee Curtis and Michelle Yeoh supremacy
I cannot stress enough how much of a delight it is to watch two middle aged women performing high octane, over the top martial arts scenes a la Kill Bill. It’s just honestly… thrilling. The way that Everything Everywhere All at Once celebrates the mundane, and puts the everyday on the blockbuster stage, is so special. Jamie Lee Curtis is a true chameleon in this film – going from haughty jobsworth tax officer to villainous and violent destroyer in an instant. And that’s before we even get onto the universe where Michelle Yeoh and Jamie Lee Curtis are romantically involved and have hotdogs for fingers. No, I’m not joking.
Why should I watch it?
Because, simply, it will change your life. I left the cinema feeling… different. I felt different about the world we live in, about what mattered to me, what matters to me and about what should matter to me. I left wanting to ring my mum, and it made me want to overhaul our relationship from the ground up – because, candidly, we’ve not always had the best and most plain sailing time together. It made me feel like the cinema is one of the most powerful places on earth. It made me want to pay whatever it took to watch it all over again. That’s how film should make you feel. It’s brave, it’s bizarre and it’s beautiful. You need to watch it immediately.
Go in blind if you can, but if you INSIST on watching the trailer, here you go.