Myung J. Chun - Los Angeles Times

‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ Breaks Records at the Oscars

Actress Michelle Yeoh poses with the Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role during the 95th Annual Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California on March 12, 2023. (Photo by Frederic J. Brown / AFP)

“This is history in the making!”

Michelle Yeoh – Acceptance speech for Best Actress in a Leading Role

Everything Everywhere All at Once, (EEAAO) the mind-bending movie directed by Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert dominated the night, winning seven academy awards. So what was so special about this film?

The movie dives into the theory of the multiverse, taking you on a ride into the ‘multi-versal’ versions of each character, each with a new personality and even weirder world. Yet, even though we see Evelyn (Michelle Yeoh’s character) travel to universes where she is a famous actress attending the premier of her film and a martial artist that could give Bruce Lee a run for his money, the original, most important, and most entertaining version of her character is a Chinese-American mother struggling to make ends meet and connect with her daughter.

This is what is special about the film because the struggles that exist within a family will reach people on a global scale. After the hit Netflix series, ‘Squid Game’ and ‘Crazy Rich Asians,’ there has been a rise in Asian cinema, but EEAAO will propel this recent success even further and hopefully helping to eradicate the stigma around foreign films in the Western World. Yeoh dedicated her Oscar “to all the moms in the world because they are the superheroes, and without them, none of us would be here tonight.”

Jamie Lee Curtis added to the successful film’s award tally by winning the Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. It was a night for comeback stories with Brendan Fraser, from The Mummy Trilogy, winning the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his performance in ‘The Whale’ and Ke Huy Quan, who starred alongside Yeoh in ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’ winning Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

You might remember Ke Huy Quan from his role in ‘Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom’, and last night, Harrison Ford shared a heartwarming embrace with his former fellow cast member that would make anyone cry. The second Indiana Jones film was shot in 1983, and Quan told The Hollywood Reporter in a roundtable discussion that director Steven Spielberg has been sending him a present every single Christmas, for all this time.

There was a feeling that movies like Indiana Jones were needed for people to return to the cinemas, especially with more and more people perfectly comfortable staying at home and streaming movies on their TV. ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ definitely fits into this category of film and won the Oscar for Best Sound last night. It was a spectacular film that completely immersed you into the fighter jets, and reminded us of classic films that involved movie-stars, not just the movie. When you were watching Tom Cruise (who still hasn’t aged a day), as an audience member, you were watching Tom Cruise, the movie-star as well as his character, ‘Maverick’. It brought back a certain flair that cinema was missing for some time.

Another movie that brought people rushing back to the cinemas was the long-awaited ‘Avatar: The Way of Water’, the sequel to Avatar released in 2011. It won the Oscar for Best Visual Effects, and deservedly so. With its stunning visuals, it’s no wonder it took so long to make. But if you liked the sequel, get ready for the third instalment in the Avatar Franchise to be released a lot sooner.

It was an exciting year for Irish cinema. ‘The Banshees of Inisherin’ received nine nominations, ‘The Quiet Girl’ received a nomination for Best International Film, ‘An Irish Goodbye’ won the Oscar for Best Live-Action Short, and Paul Mescal received a nomination for Best Actor! It shows real promise and excitement for the future of Irish filmmaking.

Overall, it was an amazing year for the cinema. One way to prove that would be to let one of the all-time great directors do the talking for me:

“For so long now, so many of us see films… they take us by the hand…  that it will be all OK by the end… But that’s on dark days. The clouds lifted when I experienced Todd’s film, ‘TÁR.”

Martin Scorsese – New York Film Critics Circle Awards

‘Tár’ didn’t win at the Oscars but between Todd Field’s inventive directing and Cate Blanchett’s outstanding performance, I think this kind of praise from a director like Scorsese is worth just as much, if not more.

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Hi, I am a 21-year-old second-year Journalism student at Ulster University, Coleraine.