This Friday, “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” the heartbreaking and jaw-dropping new image from director duo Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, collectively known as the Daniels. The writer-director duo, aided by stars Michelle Yeoh, Ke Huy Quan, Stephanie Hsu and Jamie Lee Curtis, have concocted a masterpiece that manages the delicate balance between sui generis and yet familiar feeling. Here we have a movie about a mother (Yeoh) trying to emotionally connect with her daughter (Hsu) and avoid divorce from her husband (Quan) while saving her business from the taxwoman (Curtis) – it’s the familiar – all while stroking across the multiverse in an effort to ward off a nihilistic, creation-destroying malaise-filled villain who leads a cult that worships an evil bagel.
“Everything Everywhere” is a serious film – some cynics will suggest saccharine – about families, about the difficulty of watching your children grow up and transform into something you are not, about the love necessary to keep generations together. This seriousness is reinforced by what can only be described as supreme and jaw-dropping silliness, including, among other wild visuals, people having hot dogs for their fingers and a puppeteer raccoon with a Benihana-like leader in the style of “Ratatouille”.
Given its visual imagination, emotional reach, and startling originality, it’s exactly the kind of film that should be seen on the biggest screen available with as many people as possible. The community reaction to “Everything, Everywhere, All at Once” is part of its greatness.
I haven’t seen “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” or “The Northman” yet, as they both open April 22, so I can’t recommend them equally. But it’s the kind of movie that should be able to succeed — or at least have a chance of succeeding — in a healthy cinematic environment.
‘The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent’ is a star-driven high-profile comedy: Nicolas Cage stars as ‘Nick Cage’, a money-troubled former A-lister who decides to put on some money. order in his finances by attending the birthday party. party of a wealthy criminal. ‘Unbearable Weight’ Is Packed With Talent: In addition to Cage, the film stars fan favorites including Tiffany Haddish, Ike Barinholtz and Neil Patrick Harris.
Earning nothing but positive reviews from South by Southwest critics, the film is poised to build on Cage’s highly acclaimed performance in the criminally under-awarded “Pig” and will likely make a good companion to the excellent book. by Keith Phipps on the actor. varied work, “Age of Cage”. More importantly, it’s the kind of mid-budget, star-driven comedy that needs to grab some attention if theaters hope to rely on anything other than super-powered monsters to sell popcorn.
Then there is “The Northman”. In some ways, it’s the hardest sell for the public. I loved director Robert Eggers’ ‘The Witch’ – it’s one of the top 10 movies of the 2010s – and ‘The Lighthouse’ was a perfect lockdown movie released a few months too early. Audiences were less smitten with his films than critics were: “The Witch” earned a C-minus from CinemaScore, and neither really took off at the box office.
But Eggers’ vision is compelling, his style is unique, and someone somewhere decided it was worth investing $90 million in a historical epic set in the frozen Nordic wastelands that stars Alexander Skarsgard, Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicole Kidman, Ethan Hawke, and Bjork, and allegedly culminated in a naked sword fight atop an active volcano. To say this is one of my most anticipated films of the year is an understatement; we don’t get too many movies like this anymore.
And that’s because you, the movie-going audience who desperately avoid movies like “The Last Duel,” made it that way. None of the 10 highest-grossing films released in 2021 was an original production without a franchise. (“Free Guy” reached No. 11.) In 2019, that number was zero again. 2018 saw precisely one in the top 10: “Bohemian Rhapsody”. (2020 was a weird year, as we all remember, but even then the only true originals to make the top 10 were “Tenet” and “Onward,” neither of which topped $62 million.)
None of this is new, but I hope it serves as a stark reminder: if you want movie studios to make good, interesting, and original movies, you have to go see them.