Chaotic Harmony is ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’

A movie rollercoaster invoking every emotion along the way.


Natasha Phanthavong, Staff Writer

   How can anything be more important than what’s happening right now? Is the constant question coming to mind in A24’s new wide release film, Everything Everywhere All at Once. This film follows Evelyn Wang, played by Michelle Yeoh, as she comes to realize that from millions of multiverses of versions of herself, she’s drawn the short end of the stick.

   In the present, this Evelyn tries to bear the hardships of the remnants of her family and its struggling laundromat, with a surplus of tax issues. After leaving China, Wang is shoved into a new language, a marriage, and the formalities of America. To her surprise, her mundane and stressful life makes her the perfect unlikely hero to save the fate of a universal rupture.

   Because the film is labeled a comedy, I was expecting a light-hearted action movie with some animated sequences; similar to Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. From chewing chapstick to tickling your nose, directors Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert did not disappoint on comedic elements, such as the jumping paths to actually travel to connecting universes. These jumping paths rely on absurd actions to be able to ensure a good verse jump to another universe.

   Overlapping the comedy of the movie are heartfelt moments that leave me in a daze of whether to cry or laugh. As Wang continues to take the time to see eye-to-eye with her daughter; the scene was set as they are in a universe where they are both rocks communicating through speech bubbles. The constant switch back and forth between sad scenes and comedic relief, keeps viewers smiling through tears walking out of the theater mindblown.

   With growing up Wang comes to the realization of having to settle down, and halting the spur of ideal jobs that could have been. Constantly having regrets for another life, Wang searches these obscure realities for life choices that seemed too out of reach to think about through one perspective. But as all the facade of realities all came to an end, the simplistic beauty of what Wang built as her own, seemed to be the perfect version for her.

   Making a return to the screen after almost 20 years is Ke Huy Quan, portraying Wang’s husband  Waymond. After starring in hit 80’s staples like The Goonies and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Quan’s disappearance from the screen was not his choice, but the lack of Asian casting in Hollywood at the time. Coming back to acting, Quan told the New York Times how inspiring it is to see such a change in the Asian representation from his time, and his excitement to get back to acting.

   This film connects to a multitude of genres and invokes chaos in the minds of viewers. Rather than trying to understand the innate details, it allows the audience to interpret their own view of the film. After viewing it, this movie will occupy your mind for days as a lingering thought that picks your brain.