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Seven Oscars for “Everyting Everywhere All At Once”: Triumph of anti-nationalism

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Michelle Yeoh (l. “Everything Everywhere All At Once”)
Image: APA/AFP/Macon
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“Everything Everywhere All At Once” Won Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Actress (Michelle Yeoh), Best Director (Daniel Scheinarts and Daniel Kwan, The Daniels), Original Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor (Ke Huy Quan), Best Supporting Actress ( Jamie Lee Curtis), Best Original Screenplay and Best Editing.

As remarkable as this triumph is the film’s main character – a first-generation Chinese migrant who runs a laundromat in the United States. A character that has often been reduced to the inevitably funny sideshow in film history, with an undertone that is today recognized as racist.

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Evelyn Wang, played by Michelle Yeoh, is not the “young” female protagonist of American film – Yeoh is 60 and in her Oscars speech she told all women never to be fooled into thinking they are too old for anything.

Life has written itself in Evelyn’s (unvarnished) face in this film. A service to all women in the world who cannot simply disappear if they no longer correspond to the common ideal of beauty that is shaped by the obsession with youth.

The life written on Evelyn’s face tells of a global story, of getting along between two cultures and migration, which the directors and screenwriters have translated into Evelyn’s wild ride through different universes, during which she has to find herself , so that her family and her life can find balance.

According to UN estimates, there are more than 280 million international migrants worldwide. Around 2.07 million people lived in Austria in 2019 (according to information from the Federal Chancellery). People with a migration background, which corresponds to a share of almost a quarter of the total Austrian population. In Vienna, the proportion with a migration background was almost twice as high at almost 46 percent.

The Academy continues with the freestyle of “Everything Everywhere All At Once” continues a tradition established more than five years ago of focusing the Oscar for Best Picture on stories beyond predominantly male, white, heterosexual and merit-based protagonists. An overview:

“Coda” (2022, Deaf Drama)
“Nomadland” (2021, a woman forced into economic marginalization)
“Parasite” (2020, South Korean class parable)
“Green Book” (2019, friendship drama about an African American man and an Italian migrant)
“Shape of Water (2018, fantasy ode to misfitness)
“Moonlight” (2017, African American identity drama)

From a form and staging perspective, Everything Everywhere All At Once is the most unconventional, exciting, risk-taking film on this list since Mexican director Guillermo del Toro’s Shape of Water, which just won the Oscar for animation with Pinocchio. That’s a tribute to cinematography to be satisfied with.

If you look at “Everything Everywhere All At Once” as a plea for social empathy and mutual cultural understanding, this also corresponds to the function of its medium of distribution, that of cinema.
It’s a pity that the theatrical release in Austria in May 2022 rather fizzled out.

Source: Nachrichten

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