This review was originally intended for “Glide”. It may. If you have seen After Yang, Have you heard. It is the ethereal dreamy belief that we initially see only in the form of a clip, a moment in the waterfall of a robot’s memories, his love for Android swaying on Mitsky’s sound wall: “To be away from everything / To be one / from everything ». I wanted to write about it because I did not find it on Spotify. His absence was probably just a legitimate peccadillo, but it seemed poetic – Mitsky is known for both her music and her flight from fame, fearing the creeping corporalization of her art and soul. The absence of this song played as her answer. “Glide” first appeared on All about Lily Chou-Chou, Shunji Iwai meditating in 2001 on disgruntled Japanese youth. The link they can not find in person, can be found on the internet, in their collective fandom for the (fictional) singer Lily Chou-Chou, whose blurred identity floats in the ether of her song (her version in “Glide”, in composition by Takeshi Kobayashi, with Salyu’s vocals, quite funny, available on Spotify). A kind of ghost that emits its sonic laments in space, incorporeal, is what Mitsky seems to want to be.
All these ideas — the fluidity of the real and the imaginary, the alienation of youth, the alienation of technology, our growing distrust of celebrity — swirled in my mind before I wrote this. But they kept thinking annoying things about various other unrelated things: the Oscars – should I write about it? the Grammys? the 900 headlights I watched from now until last week? anything else I saw, heard, read, did, thought?
And then I saw All Everywhere Simultaneously, who basically asked the same question. “We’re going to find each other in a very noisy world,” co-director Daniel Kwan – who and fellow filmmaker Daniel Scheinert collectively play ‘Daniels,’ told Slash Film. “Because I think right now everyone is struggling to figure out how to do that, and I think our stories are having a hard time keeping up with that.” This made me think about my constant indecision about what to write and what I miss when I do. I am writing, the constant worry that I am choosing the wrong thing in an endless storm of things. As Kwan put it in the same interview, “It’s like everyone is trying to reconcile their own individual mental health and their own individual history with that of the world and the universe, and every universe, you know?”
How to summarize All Everywhere Simultaneously? Let’s give it a try: it has Michelle Yeoh, kung fu dance, JAMES HONG, Scott Pilgrim shades, shades Eternal sunshine, shades of Wong Kar-wai, Short Round as an adult male (Ke Huy Quan), Racacouille (raccoon this time, not rat), Jamie Lee Curtis as a pencil, Jenny Slate nose, hot dog fingers, a magic butt, a neon dress made of teddy bears, unlockable paper cuts, a giant bun thing. And two talking rocks. Oh yes, and google eyes. Many of these. It has more but I can not remember them all right now. But that’s the point, according to Scheinert: “We wanted the maximization of the film to be linked to what it’s like to scroll through infinite things, something we all do a lot.”
At the center of this scroll is Yeoh as a middle-aged Chinese immigrant Evelyn Wang, who owns a troubled laundry business, whose husband (Quan) is at the end of his rope and wants a divorce, whose gay daughter H (Stephanie Hsu ) seems depressing. The funny thing is that Evelyn lives her worst life as a gateway to her parallel better lives, to various alternative beings in which: she is a world-famous action star, has a lesbian relationship with the IRS agent (Curtis, having her time of her life), and becomes one of the aforementioned rocks. This is a martial arts movie, this is science fiction, this is a comedy, this is a relationship drama — Evelyn’s husband I really want to separate her, but she thinks it will wake her up – although it is ultimately a love story between mother and daughter (Hsu, again, a spectacular bounce between various repetitions, from the depressed to the wretched queen of the intergalactic space). It’s also probably a love letter to every movie Daniel has ever seen.
The only reason I do not say All Everywhere Simultaneously is irresistibly fun, as I know one person actually hated it, but even that fits because a movie about everything is nothing without every answer. Daniels wanted this experience of a million different narratives hitting you at the same time, this very specific FOMO caused by technology for things you haven’t done, places you haven’t been, people you haven’t met. “One of the only ways you can react to this is to be numb, and I think a lot of people are numb,” Kwan told The Verge. “This movie is almost a way of saying, ‘We see you in this mess.’ Maybe there is a better way. “Maybe we can find a way to exist in all this noise.”
In a way, they can find harmony in chaos. The Daniels are not just throwing everything at the wall, there is an organizing principle here. Even their methodology spoke to the essence of the film, seeing the value on a small scale in so much exaggeration. Due to the limited budget — $ 25 million and, for the framework, Everything Everywhere is an answer to The Matrix, whose most recent entry was with a budget of $ 190 million – and just three months into filming (the latest Matrix had nine), asked for the help of the Martial Club, a collective that publishes homemade kung fu movies on Youtube. And to show what it’s like to be on social media, instead of just resorting to lozenges, they changed their tools. “All these different Michelles are the stars of their different stories,” Scheinert explained to Slash. “We wanted to lean a lot on things like the aspect ratio, the specific lenses, the color palettes, the music, the processes, to help the audience watch it all.” This is a movie about the mind of the Internet, which always works at an excessive speed, but unlike the Internet, everything fits. Thank God Daniels chose this movie instead of the Loki TV series — this is the kind of ingenuity you never seem to find in any of these superhero universes (Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is the rare exception). It’s a pioneering ingenuity – production was limited, but their imagination was not.
The joke field for All Everywhere Simultaneously was, according to Kwan, “What if my mom was stuck in The Matrix?” As he told Inverse: “The history of immigrants has so much to do with wondering ‘What if?’ You long to know what would have happened if you had lived, if you had gone to another city, you wonder how life would have turned out. “Everything is baked in the multiverse.” Although everything in making this movie mattered, one thing throughout the movie is that nothing matters, something that actually has the unexpected effect of freeing you to choose what you really want. For Yeoh’s character, it’s to be with her daughter. In Daniels’ view of the world, the multiverse is what it means to be alive right now, but each person’s story, like a returning refrain, vibrates within them – they just have to hear it. This is what Mitsky says, who also has a song Everything Everywhererefers to “Glide” when he sings, “I want to be just like a melody / Just like a simple sound / Like in harmony”.