This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Robert E. Acuña’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
For a film that features hot dog fingers, fanny pack nunchucks, dildo swords, and "Raccacoonie", this still found a way to surprise me. It has a strong emotional core that will pull the rug from under you. I would have never guessed that I was going to bawl my eyes out watching this, but I did and it felt both embarrassing and rewarding.
'Everything, Everywhere, All at Once' is NOT about the multiverse, saving the world, action, or adventure...
It's about suicide.
The absurdism is meant to disarm you from the topic and catch you off-guard.
Meet Evelyn Wang, she's a mother, a wife, and she's sick of everyone's shit. She finds her husband annoying, she resents her elderly father, and she thinks her daughter is rebellious against her wishes.
When the multiverse collides, the fate of the world, unfortunately, rests in her hands as she must defeat the evil Jobu Tupacki from destroying everything we know and love...
Or so we think?
When we finally meet Jobu, we discover she's actually Evelyn's daughter from another timeline, and she doesn't want to kill anyone or destroy anything.
What Jobu wants is someone who can meet her power level and see the universe through her eyes. She believes that this will inspire hope in herself
But when Evelyn ascends to that greater power, the two of them have a very depressing conversation where Jobu concludes that Evelyn isn't going to solve her issue. That there is no purpose in living and that there's nothing left to experience.
So she decides to end her life.
And it's at this moment that Evelyn understands that this is all her fault.
Evelyn had forgotten how to love.
Her "annoying" husband has actually been trying everything to save their marriage but it takes two to make it work. Her father, who was a terrible dad in her youth, has been seeking forgiveness for his past mistakes. And her daughter, who's been wrongfully mistreated for being gay, just wants to be accepted for who she is without any judgment.
So in the final 30 minutes, the climax isn't some action sequence to save the universe...it's a mother trying to prevent her daughter from committing suicide.
I was a weeping mess for the entire 3rd act.
This topic has always been a touchy subject for me, and it's reflected in my reviews for 'I'm Think of Ending Things', 'Soul', and 'Nine Days'.
What brings me joy is that this film carefully approaches this subject matter with a lot of sincerity. It doesn't make light of real death, and when the twists and turns approach you, it's a gut punch.
Sure the film is a hysterical comedy filled with outrageous, acid-trippy fight scenes but The Daniels crafted an emotional story that creeps up on you unsuspectingly.