Underdogs, Nihilism and the Non-Ultimate Solution to East Asian Family Problems
The most superficial part of the film is of course its multiverse setting and its overloaded visual landscape. For viewers who enjoy collecting eggs and enjoying various Chinese and Western cinematic sequences, such as myself, this layer alone is already enough of a treat.
The imagination that overflows in it is amazing. The film's creative team presents all of this in a way that pays homage while deconstructing it, with many of the similar Asian films and Jackie Chan kung fu comedies being used in a way that resembles a "stereotypical label", but in fact mocks the label itself in a post-modern way.
The overwhelming amount of information brings about such a strong sensory stimulation that the audience's delicate side is suddenly mobilized in a universe where only rocks and cliffs are left in silence. The minimalist visuals of this scene create a sort of back-to-basics emotional communication effect like reading a comic or book, which brings tears to the eyes.
These settings and visual landscapes serve as the shell of the film, a clever and innovative form of narrative that is essentially a thought experiment to explore the realistic thinking that permeates the film.
The complexity of the topic of reality explored in this film is no less complex than the elements it uses. For me personally, I was struck by three aspects of the film.
One is the question of the survival of the disadvantaged.
This extends to the many settings in the film such as race, class, immigration, gender, sexuality, etc., which ultimately is the issue of survival of the disadvantaged.
An ordinary East Asian woman living in developed countries in Europe and the United States, the setting alone is already hard mode, daily entanglement in a variety of trivial and mundane matters almost wear out their joy of survival, but also to face the ultimate challenge of property may have to be disposed of to zero, miserable to no end, the need to turn into a superhero to advance the story line.
Her soul through the various universes of their own access to the ability to fight the process, which corresponds to the opening scene of her husband, daughter, store, customers, financial problems of the process. The film uses a very playful approach to express a point – to be able to deal with these things in everyday life these people may have to have "superhero" ability. The core is very helpless and very sad.
The film's solution to this problem falls on the "understanding" and "love" approach, very warm, very healing, very ideal, but the reality may not be so desirable.
Secondly, nihilism and the corresponding problem of suicide.
The daughter's "Nothing Matters" and the black hole of the bagel are typical nihilistic imagery. As Foucault says in his commentary on West, by committing suicide, "a completely free existence will rise", "an existence that will no longer bear the burden of life, but will see only a crystalline transparency, where it is integrated into a momentary immortality". After witnessing her mother's life and seeing her lack of understanding and approval of herself, she develops similar thoughts.
This is a very heavy topic, and so far mankind has failed to find the ultimate way to fight against nothingness. By faith? By love? Existential philosophy? If we lose our emotional connection to the things around us in the midst of the chaos and uncertainty, we can easily fall into this quagmire and be drawn to nothingness. The film's solution to this problem also falls into the existential chicken soup of "love", "emotion" and "feeling everything and still being able to enjoy life in peace".
As usual, it is very warm, healing and ideal, but the reality may not be so desirable.
The third is the clichéd issue of intergenerational communication and the influence and identity of the family of origin in the East Asian family genre. There are two lines in the whole story, one is the tax line, and the other line explodes when the lesbian daughter discovers that her mother won't introduce her girlfriend openly in front of her father, thus exploding into an emotional identity disorder.
This barrier is often an overlooked, hidden part of the East Asian-style family, but the film uses a story of repeated chases across the multiverse to show you that this is no small thing and can lead to the destruction of the universe. It's an interesting metaphor that helps us to take a hard look at the communication and identity issues of the family of origin. The ending of the film is also through the "love" and "understanding" to solve all this.
It is still very warm, healing and ideal, but the reality may not be so desirable.
The parts of the film about love and understanding are so idealistic that the ideal is on the verge of collapse and a happy ending can be ushered in the New Year party. The creative team, through the wild visual language and plot setting, seems to say that it does not matter, even if life is so bad, even if you are in chaos, you will eventually usher in your own love and reconciliation. Through everything, just face life peacefully.
The film's ending is like an optimistic hypnotic, giving you a bit of hope to persevere in the chaos you feel, giving you a bit of courage to face it all head-on, and at the same time taking on the tears you feel in it, this warm, healing and ideal point is not cheap sensationalism. The humanistic concern that shines behind it is the most moving part of the film.
Life is a messy quagmire, and choosing to believe in love may not be inspirational, right or moral, but it can at least give us some relief from the pain of being in the quagmire.
Perhaps we really have to experience a million possibilities before we can truly learn to understand and love. Perhaps the only people who can choose to love after experiencing countless possibilities are the ones who are really determined. I hope we will all become that kind of person.
Free download of Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022)
Above is the review of the movie Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022), if you like this movie, you can download it here for free: [Free download of Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022)]