Mon. Sep 26th, 2022

lizziesnoopes.com Despite some smart gags, this broadly buzzed-about comedy turns out to be an oddly mediocre misfire

This hipster hypefest is an adventure in alternative existences and multiverse realities from writer-directors Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert – the “Daniels” – who in 2016 gave us the Jonzeian comedy Swiss Army Man. Everything Everywhere All at Once has been critically swooned over in the US and pretty much everywhere else, so it’s disconcerting to find it frantically hyperactive and self-admiring and yet strangely laborious, dull and overdetermined, never letting up for a single second to let us care about, or indeed believe in, any of its characters.

Michelle Yeoh plays Evelyn, a Chinese-American woman who co-owns a scuzzy laundromat with her husband Waymond (Ke Huy Quan); Evelyn is discontented with her life and has a tense relationship with her daughter Joy (Stephanie Hsu), using Joy’s frail and old-fashioned grandfather Gong Gong (James Hong) – who lives with them – as an excuse not to accept Joy’s gay identity. Evelyn reaches a crisis when confronted by an angry tax officer, Deirdre Beaubeirdra (Jamie Lee Curtis), who is auditing their business, and furious about Evelyn’s attempts to claim deductions for a karaoke machine for the laundromat’s community party nights, at which Evelyn also offers food. In her heart, poor Evelyn figures she could have been a singer, or a chef, or a movie star in another life and this tax-deduction issue triggers a crazy journey into any number of different universes for more than two hours. Continue reading… lizziesnoopes.com
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