- Gareth Crook
Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022) - 10/10
Strap in, this one’s energetic. Evelyn (Michelle Yeoh) has a million things on her mind. Running a business, running a home, taking care of her elderly demanding father Gong Gong (James Hong) and she’s about to find her husband Waymond (Ke Huy Quan) is seeking divorce. As opening scenes go, there’s a lot laid down. So far so, yes fast paced but fairly standard. Lots of characters introduced, the scene is set. We meet Evelyn’s daughter Joy (Stephanie Hsu) and her girlfriend Becky (Tallie Medel) who she doesn’t entirely feel happy about, worried that her father won’t approve. Evelyn is struggling and no one is happy. It’s a classic family drama delivered in fast forward. Then it goes batshit. I could try explain, but it really would spoil the fun. Let’s just say Evelyn is given a chance to change her life and the world(s). Think Being John Malkovich crossed with The Matrix and your on the right track. Things are quirky and attention demanding and if that’s not enough Jamie Lee Curtis rocks up as a auditor in the most comically ridiculous wig and a collection of employee of the month trophies shaped like butt plugs. It takes me a minute to realise that Waymond is Data from The Goonies, but when I do, I love him and this film even more. It’s beautifully invented, oddly personal and disarmingly funny. The story is simple, a tale of pressure and potential and of course love, but it’s wrapped up in hundreds of little cinematic metaphorical twists that echo that energy in the opening scene. It goes without saying that you just need to go with it to enjoy it. Try and pick it apart and… what the hell’s wrong with you? Why would you look to find plot holes in such a wonderfully bonkers film?? Now if you don’t like martial arts action sequences you might struggle, but seriously there’s much more action than simply the fighting. Sure it’s a melting pot of visual ideas and trickery to employ it, but there’s enough backbone in our hero Evelyn to hold it together. I can’t imagine what the script for this looked like, but it must’ve raised some eyebrows. To say I love it is an understatement. When Evelyn and her nemesis reach a kind of enlightenment as subtitled rocks in the middle of a barren landscape. I find myself wanting to stand and applaud. Enough words. Watch it.