Photo by Martin Vorel
What almost no one wanted to happen happened. A movie that started out as a bizarre indie production with incredible word of mouth support became the biggest film of the year.
Everything Everywhere All At Once won seven Oscars including, most importantly, best picture. Something hardly any critic would have wanted.
It’s one thing to be the unexpected phenomenon of the year, or the most outlandish movie of the season, and another thing to be something that it simply is not. Because we aren’t talking about a masterpiece of a film, and we explained when it came out.
And it’s not that it was a surprise, because the film by Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert had been reaping awards since the awards season began, but there were many who were confident that, in the end, a touch of sanity would lead the Academy. Many of us thought that, in the end, everything would come down to a pat on the back (“cheer up, guys, you did a great job”) in the form of an Oscar for best editing and they’d go on to award a film with fewer fireworks and more substance. One of those films that will remain relevant even after the multiverse is done shouting about the latest trends.
Because, although it wasn’t a glorious year, there were other far more interesting candidates. Films with stronger vocations to withstand the test of time than the winner, from The Fabelmans to The Banshees of Inhiserin, Elvis, or even Top Gun: Maverick. Not to mention the remarkable war film All Quiet on the Western Front, which at least had the consolation of taking home the Oscar for best international feature film, leaving the masterful Argentina, 1985 high and dry.
In short, everything was all wrong, including the mediocre Pinocchio receiving the Oscar for best animated feature film when Red is a better movie and Puss in Boots is way more fun.
Well, maybe not everything. Because Brendan Fraser certainly deserved the Oscar for best performance in The Whale, and Navalny is an Oscar-caliber documentary. And this year no one was punched on stage and Lady Gaga showed the world that if you’ve got talent you can perform in jeans and a T-shirt. Everything else though? Let’s just try and forget about it.
Ana Sánchez de la Nieta
Translated from Spanish by Lucia K. Maher