The 10 Best Movies in Theaters Right Now

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The 10 Best Movies in Theaters Right Now

Movie theaters are officially back. As the cinematic offerings slowly return to the big screen compared to the streaming services and various digital rental retailers, we’re here to sort out what’s actually the best bang for your buck at the box office.

A new year and a new COVID variant are in full swing, so now might be a good time to exercise restraint even if there are bigger budget offerings hitting the big screen.

Of course, use your judgment when choosing whether to go back to the movies or not, but there’s an ever-growing percentage of vaccinated moviegoers who are champing at the bit to get back in front of the big screen. And I’m very happy to say that we’re back, here to help.

That said, things in theatrical distribution are a little strange right now, so apart from some big recent blockbusters, there’s a mix of Oscar-winners, lingering releases, indies and classics booked—depending, of course, on the theater. But thankfully, there’s been enough good movies actually released recently this year that you should have no problem finding something great to watch.

Check out the 10 best movies in theaters right now:


10. The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent

the-unbearable-weight-of-massive-talent-poster.jpg Release Date: April 22, 2022
Director: Tom Gormican
Stars: Nicolas Cage, Pedro Pascal, Sharon Horgan, Lily Sheen, Tiffany Haddish, Ike Barinholtz, Jacob Scipio, Neil Patrick Harris, Alessandra Mastronardi, Paco León
Rating: R
Runtime: 106 minutes

It’s virtually impossible to think of an actor who has consistently maintained a larger presence—on or off the screen—than Nicolas Cage. From screaming “Not the bees!” in The Wicker Man to his gloriously bizarre southern accent in Con Air, Cage has been delivering audiences quotable gems and iconic moments since the early 1980s, inadvertently forming something of a cult around himself in the process. No one appreciates this presence more than Tom Gormican, the director and co-writer of The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, a film that stars Cage as himself. The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent expertly weaves together numerous kinds of stories. At times, it’s a buddy comedy, and Cage and super-fan Javi (Pedro Pascal) have such palpable chemistry that they effortlessly lift the genre to the height of its powers. At others, it’s a straight-faced spy-thriller, with stunts from Cage that are bound to remind the audience of classics like National Treasure and The Rock. But the best part of The Unbearable Weight is its impressive amount of self-awareness. Most of this comes from Cage himself, who superbly channels caricatures that audiences know and love. His sleazy, long-haired alter-ego “Nicky” (billed as Nicolas Kim Coppola, Cage’s real name) recalls Cage’s cavalier 1990s-era Con Air slash Wild at Heart persona. Think Adaptation if Kaufman had gone the machismo route. Cage plays Nicky to his absolute limits, using a hilariously emphatic cadence while giving Nick impassioned pep talks on the significance of recapturing the fame he held 20 years prior. Even though The Unbearable Weight pokes fun at the fact that, at times, it follows the cold formula of a blockbuster film…it still follows the cold formula of a blockbuster film. Indeed, locations and action sequences are often replete with flat and predictable CGI, and a lot of the dialogue feels stilted. Despite these weak spots, The Unbearable Weight works on almost every level. If you’re a Cage superfan, then you’re guaranteed to revel in the bounty of references to his filmography. But even if you’re not (though you will become one after this movie), this is an emotional, engaging, funny, riveting film.—Aurora Amidon


9. Downton Abbey: A New Era

downton-abbey-a-new-era-poster.jpg Release Date: May 20, 2022
Director: Simon Curtis
Stars: Hugh Bonneville, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter, Raquel Cassidy, Brendan Coyle, Michelle Dockery, Kevin Doyle, Joanne Froggatt, Michael Fox, Harry Hadden-Paton, Robert James-Collier, Allen Leech, Phyllis Logan, Elizabeth McGovern, Sophie McShera, Tuppence Middleton, Lesley Nicol, Douglas Reith, Maggie Smith, Imelda Staunton, Penelope Wilton, Hugh Dancy, Laura Haddock, Nathalie Baye, Dominic West, Jonathan Zaccaï
Rating: PG
Runtime: 125 minutes

Will you enjoy a A New Era even if you’ve never seen a single second of Downton Abbey? As the Crawleys themselves might say, “I’d rather think so.” But this is a movie for the fans—almost a gift, really. The last two-plus years have been a lot for everyone, and to escape to late 1920s England and France in all its splendor is a delight. All the things we adore about Downton are still there. The lackadaisical pacing that invites viewers in. The Dowager Countess’ delightful barbs. The Upstairs Downstairs shenanigans. Mary (Michelle Dockery) and Edith’s (Laura Carmichael) rat-a-tat sibling rivalry. (When Edith remarks that going back to work will give her an opportunity to use her brain again, Mary replies, “Let’s hope it’s still there.”) The Crawleys and their staff still make up a well-coiffed, well-dressed and well-executed soap opera. What a treat to get to hang out with them for another two hours. The music and sweeping aerial photography immediately transport you to a different era. But A New Era is smart enough to not unravel well-loved plot points. No romances are undone. Characters aren’t broken up just so the movie would have something to do. Unlike other sequels and movies based on TV series (looking right at you Sex and the City), the true gift is that these characters remain true to the characters we know and love. With the remaining few lingering romances wrapped up and a plot twist I won’t reveal, there’s a sense of closure and finality as A New Era ends. But clearly series creator Julian Fellowes has proven he has more Downton stories to tell. I have to say I would be happy to continue watching for years to come.—Amy Amatangelo


8. The Lost City

the-lost-city-poster.jpg Release Date: April 1, 2022
Director: Adam Nee, Aaron Nee
Stars: Sandra Bullock, Channing Tatum, Daniel Radcliffe, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, Oscar Nuñez, Patti Harrison, Bowen Yang
Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 112 minutes

After the death of her husband, the last thing smartypants archaeologist-turned-paperback-romance-author Loretta Sage (Sandra Bullock) wants to do is leave her house, let alone go on a book tour at the behest of her caring but pushy publisher/publicist Beth (Da’Vine Joy Randolph) and painfully millennial social media manager Allison (Patti Harrison, a star). Being a trouper, Loretta suits up into her uncomfortable glittery purple jumpsuit (it’s on loan) and begrudgingly puts on a fake smile onstage next to Alan (Channing Tatum), the well-meaning but dimwitted (and yes, hot) himbo cover model who portrays the hunky leading man of Loretta’s books, Dash McMahon. While the explosive, action-packed sequences are a lot of fun, and an essential element of the adventure genre, what sets The Lost City apart from recent, more tired blockbuster adventure/comedy fare (looking at you, Uncharted) is the humorously human moments that lead to a genuine connection between Loretta, Alan and the audience. Instead of falling back on the kind of semi-ironic “so, that happened” style of fourth-wall-breaking writing, directors and co-writers Adam and Aaron Nee take familiar adventure/rom-com cornerstones and repurpose them to find previously undiscovered gems through these personal moments. They are certainly aware of the tropes being toyed with here—dumb guy/smart lady romance, the frame story of Loretta’s novels, the treasure-hunting villian—but they approach these tropes with a freshness that gets the audience invested in its characters. The Lost City might follow conventional genre beats, but an expert cast with a stellar sense of humor and fresh writing leads to lots of laughs and a romantic adventure that turns out to be a diamond in the rough.—Katarina Docalovich


7. Petite Maman

petite-maman-poster.jpg Release Date: April 22, 2022
Director: Céline Sciamma
Stars: Joséphine Sanz, Gabrielle Sanz, Stéphane Varupenne, Nina Meurisse, Margo Abascal
Rating: PG
Runtime: 72 minutes

A year or two ago, I asked my mom whether she feels like her age, or if she feels younger. I told her that I still don’t feel like I’m an adult, that I feel like a teenager disguised as a person in their mid-twenties. I wanted to know if my mom had ever felt this feeling, and if she had, if it ever goes away—if people ever reach a point where they know that they’ve finally, officially stepped into adulthood and shed their adolescence. She admitted that sometimes she does feel like she ought to: Like a woman in her early sixties. But most of the time, in every way that isn’t physical, she still feels like a kid. In Petite Maman, Céline Sciamma’s follow-up to 2019’s Portrait of a Lady on Fire, the French director returns with a much smaller affair by comparison: A compact, 73-minute (yet nonetheless affecting) portrait of grief, parenthood and the constant dialogue between our past and present selves. Following the death of her maternal grandmother, eight-year-old Nelly (Joséphine Sanz) travels with her parents (Nina Meurisse and Stéphane Varupenne) to her mother’s childhood home. By all accounts, little Nelly seems to get on well with her mother. During the journey from the nursing home, Nelly attentively feeds her grieving parent cheese puffs and apple juice from behind the driver’s seat, then slides her tiny arms around her mother’s neck in an embrace to comfort her as she steers the wheel. But grief is a concept largely foreign to a child wise beyond her years and eager to play pretend as an adult, yet still distant to the reality of death. In the wake of her grandmother’s passing, as her mother clears out her old family things from the house, Nelly laments with more annoyance than anything that she bid a farewell to her relative that wasn’t the right kind of goodbye. She would have given her a better goodbye if she had known it would be her grandmother’s last. “We can’t know,” her mother tells her, and the two of them fall asleep wrapped in each other’s arms. But when Nelly awakes the next morning, her mother is gone. It’s a discovery less crushingly felt due to an implied absence that Nelly is familiar with. And her spacy yet well-meaning father can’t give Nelly a straight answer as to where her mother has up and left, but he doesn’t seem too concerned about it. The grieving process is something he’s acquainted with, but something he’s reluctant to impart upon a young kid. So, Nelly, an only child, goes off to play in the woods by herself to occupy her time during this confusing interlude. It’s there in the wilderness behind her mother’s old house that Nelly discovers a little girl about her height, about her same hair color and face shape, who lives in a home exactly like the one just beyond the path in the woods where Nelly came from. A little girl named Marion (unsurprisingly, Joséphine’s twin sister, Gabrielle Sanz) who’s building a branch fort in the woods; the same branch fort that Nelly’s mother had once made when she was around Nelly’s age. With a gentle touch, Sciamma crafts a profound, easily digestible film that takes heavy themes and makes them bite-sized. She looks at the way we speak to one another, and to ourselves, at every age, and how these conversations are inevitably dulled in the schism between a child and their parent. Our parents only know one sliver of our own personhood just as time has robbed us of knowing our parents, their proximity to changing our diapers and teaching us to drive stunted by the lives we create as we become our own people, and as we grow to understand that our parents are people, too. Petite Maman is about this dialogue we create with our families that is just as meaningful, if often frustrating, amidst the fractures inherent to our relationship with them.—Brianna Zigler


6. Happening

happening-poster.jpg Release Date: May 6, 2022
Director: Audrey Diwan
Stars: Anamaria Vartolomei, Kacey Mottet Klein, Sandrine Bonnaire, Luàna Bajrami, Pio Marmaï, Anna Mouglalis
Rating: R
Runtime: 100 minutes

For many, the leaked U.S. Supreme Court opinion that foretells the end of Roe v. Wade is a life-shattering revelation. However, for those living in states where abortion access has been gradually limited, this proposed rescinding of the 1973 landmark Supreme Court decision has seemed all but inevitable. Heartbeat bills, enforced parental consent, insurance restrictions and mandatory waiting periods have already been enforced in most “red” states. If Roe is indeed overturned, nearly 20 of these same states would almost certainly (and immediately) ban abortion outright. Though several American films have already chronicled the difficulty and stigma that surrounds legal abortion access—including Palindromes, Obvious Child, If These Walls Could Talk, Citizen Ruth, The Abortion Diaries, Never Rarely Sometimes Always—Audrey Diwan’s ‘60s-set French abortion drama Happening feels terribly, eerily prescient on the heels of this tragic setback. Racked with emotional tension and visceral turmoil, it paints a painful portrait of how women have suffered—and will, sadly, continue to suffer—for the ability to make their own precious choices. Based on the 2000 novel/memoir hybrid of the same name by Annie Ernaux, Happening is a claustrophobic recount of one woman’s dogged quest for an illegal abortion in order to pursue her academic studies. Taking place in 1963’s post-war France, the practice was heavily criminalized—meaning that Anne (Anamaria Vartolomei) risks up to 20 years in prison if she’s caught by authorities. As such, she’s discrete yet determined in her search for a provider. Vartolomei’s performance is rousing, managing to evoke the gnawing sensation of prolonged anxiety through a permanent pursed lip and furrowed brow. Happening portrays a bleak future through the scars of one woman’s past. Futile needle pricks, scratched uterine linings, scissor-severed flesh—these wounds remain fresh and bloody, ready to impart themselves on a new generation born of the same desperation. While Diwan may not have intended for her film to possess such a weighted relevance—after all, it’s set in a comparatively “dark age” for French feminism—American viewers will sweat and suffer through this unfortunate, unintentionally forward-looking tableau.—Natalia Keogan


5. Ambulance

ambulance-poster.jpg Release Date: April 8, 2022
Director: Michael Bay
Stars: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Eiza González, Jake Gyllenhaal, Garret Dillahunt, Keir O’Donnell, Olivia Stambouliah, Jackson White, A Martinez, Cedric Sanders
Rating: R
Runtime: 136 minutes

If Ambulance, Michael Bay’s 15th feature currently basking in a gleeful critical reappraisal of Bay’s canon, feels as entelechial as Bad Boys II, it can only be because Bay has found himself in the absolute best time to be Bay. Though an ensemble of Angelenos fills out the film as it barrels to pretty much the only conclusion it could have, Ambulance is about as tidy as a Michael Bay film can get. Within ten minutes we’re deep in Ambulance: Strapped for money to pay his wife’s escalating medical bills, let alone care for their infant son, Will Sharp (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) agrees to join his adoptive brother Danny (Jake Gyllenhaal, always a joy to behold) on one last big score, a bank heist that goes inevitably wrong. Subsequently, they shoot a cop (Jackson White) and commandeer the cop’s ambulance, also occupied by the “best” EMT in L.A., Cam Thompson (Eiza González)—just one more embittered soul in the grand gray tapestry that is the City of Angels. As Danny loses control and Will more and more accepts his fate as the offspring of a fabled bank-robbing psychopath, their bank robber father spoken of in hushed tones and unbelievable stories, the entire militarized might of the LAPD descends upon the stolen ambulance, led by Captain Monroe (Garret Dillahunt), a man who festishizes the police enough that Bay doesn’t have to. Even when FBI Agent Clark (Keir O’Donnell) gets involved, he’s only invited into Monroe’s inner circle because he went to college with Danny. Bad Boys and the fever dream of Bad Boys II are about how Michael Bay thinks that cops must be psychopaths in order to confront a modern psychopathic world. In Ambulance, as much as his vision of the LAPD comprises sophisticated surveillance and world-killing artillery to rival the most elite military power of the U.S. government—making sure it all looks really fucking cool—he also makes sure to interrupt an especially destructive chase sequence (as he once had Martin Lawrence declare the events happening on screen obligatory and nothing else) among so many especially destructive chase sequences, to have Monroe’s left hand, Lieutenant Dhazghig (Olivia Stambouliah), tell him how many tax dollars they’re annihilating. Later, many, many police officers die in explosions and hails of gunfire, bodies indiscriminately everywhere. One detects glee in these scenes, as if Bay’s countering Monroe’s dismissal of so many flagrantly abused tax dollars by blowing up half the LAPD in a spectacle that practically demands applause. Maybe Michael Bay no longer sees the utility in unleashing psychopathic cops on a psychopathic world, but maybe he never did. In Bay’s L.A., there are no sides, no good guys and bad guys, just a person who “saves my life” or doesn’t—just people with holes punched into their bodies and people without. This is Bay’s distinction between the “haves” and “have nots”: People who have mortal trauma and people who don’t. The film’s disposable blue collar Italian lump, Randazzo (Randazzo Marc), puts it simply: “L.A. drivers! They’re all mamalukes.” Behold this urban wasteland of struggling mamalukes—it teems with more style than we’ll ever deserve.—Dom Sinacola


4. Pleasure

pleasure-poster.jpg Release Date: May 13, 2022
Director: Ninja Thyberg
Stars: Sofia Kappel, Revike Reustle, Chris Cock, Evelyn Claire, Dana DeArmond, Kendra Spade, Mark Spiegler, John Strong, Lance Har, Aiden Starr, Aaron Thompson
Rating: NR
Runtime: 108 minutes

Swedish director Ninja Thyberg’s Pleasure isn’t afraid to delve into the behind-the-scenes reality of creating mass-marketed porn—all without pivoting into a long-winded metaphor or cautionary screed. As such, the writer/director’s observations are unvarnished and exact, detailing the nuances of one of America’s greatest cultural tenets while adhering to an admittedly familiar cinematic premise of a rising star in a tumultuous career. What’s so original about the film, though, is its assertion that performing on a porn set isn’t an idealized fantasy or a one-way ticket to self-abasement—it’s simply work. And like all workplaces under capitalism, these workers are under-paid, under-valued and under-protected. Pleasure follows Bella Cherry (an astounding breakout performance from Sofia Kappel), a 19-year-old Swede who arrives in L.A. with the sole intention of becoming a porn star. But first, she has to gradually wade into the murky waters of the industry she’s entering as a total outsider. It’s vital to note the tremendous research and personal immersion that Thyberg undertook, making Pleasure a warts-and-all depiction of porn that still retains the humanity of all the players involved. While Kappel delivers an incredible debut performance, her co-stars are all actual porn performers, agents and industry workers. Much of their inclusion in the film is predicated on the real-life rapport forged with Thyberg during her foray into the adult film world. The filmmaker resided in a “model house,” became a regular fixture on porn sets and developed genuine friendships with several actors as a result. While comparisons to Paul Verhoeven’s Showgirls, Janicza Bravo’s Zola, and even Tsai Ming-liang’s The Wayward Cloud all hold water (particularly in regards to Verhoeven’s cult classic NC-17 satire), it’s safe to say that Pleasure has considerably more in common with Lizzie Borden’s Working Girls. Both films radically demystify separate sects of the sex industry, focusing on the everyday existence of the average worker as opposed to relishing in sensationalism. Of course, if Pleasure preaches anything, it’s that our preconceived notions of the industry aren’t as black and white as we might like to believe.—Natalia Keogan


3. In Front of Your Face

in-front-of-your-face-poster.jpg Release Date: May 6, 2022
Director: Hong Sang-soo
Stars: Lee Hye-young, Cho Yunhee, Kwon Hae-hyo, Shin Seok-ho
Rating: NR
Runtime: 85 minutes

In Front of Your Face, the latest film from master South Korean director Hong Sang-soo, finds Sangok (Lee Hye-young) returning to Korea after a prolonged absence. Temporarily sleeping on her sister Jeongok’s (Cho Yunhee) couch, the siblings seem content and comfortable in their reunion. Immediately upon waking up, the sisters decide to make the most of their morning—after all, they only have so much time together before Sangok’s “late lunch” meeting with a filmmaker to discuss her potential return to the screen. Once a somewhat successful actress in Korea, Songok ditched the profession in favor of moving to the U.S. with some guy she “barely knew” to open a liquor store. The duo sip coffee, smoke cigarettes by a babbling brook and visit Jeongok’s son’s rice cake shop. They spend their morning savoring each other’s company, even if some past conflicts can’t help but crop up. Largely taking place over the course of a single day, In Front of Your Face lingers on life’s little details. A bee pollinating a flower, a marvelous cup of coffee and the momentary salve of a cigarette add as much to the story as the film’s more intense emotional revelations. It’s true that the sisters don’t necessarily possess the fullest pictures of each other—but Jeongok’s perception, even for an out-of-touch sibling who hasn’t responded to her sister’s recent letters, is often scarily spot-on. The beauty of the sparse film is that Hong manages to preserve the daily inconsequence of these one-off remarks and interactions, though they hold so much significance. The significance of time—namely remaining tethered to the tangible moment at hand—is exemplified in one specific scene: A nearly 12-minute, uninterrupted take captures a drunken conversation between Sangok and director Jaewon (Kwon Hae-hyo), undoubtedly the film’s most emotional exchange. They discuss their respective careers, views on mortality, and even take a break to play some guitar. At once sloppy, endearing and just a tad too intimate to handle, the scene is a hyper-realistic feat from Lee and Kwon. To convey that sentimental range during an extended take is always impressive to watch, and the actors certainly benefit from Hong’s careful guidance. In Front of Your Face beautifully maximizes the minute details of daily life—a short-lived reunion between aunt and nephew, a spicy (and messy) bowl of tteokbokki, a sister deep in early morning slumber. In most other filmmaker’s hands, these seemingly inconsequential observations wouldn’t seamlessly create a tender and alluring narrative. Yet Hong Sang-soo seems to have it all down to a science.—Natalia Keogan


2. The Northman

the-northman-poster.jpg Release Date: April 22, 2022
Director: Robert Eggers
Stars: Alexander Skarsgård, Nicole Kidman, Claes Bang, Anya Taylor-Joy, Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe, Björk
Rating: R
Runtime: 140 minutes

Forged in flame and fury, Robert Eggers’ The Northman is an exquisite tale of violent vengeance that takes no prisoners. Co-written by Eggers and Icelandic poet Sjón (who also recently co-wrote A24’s Icelandic creature feature Lamb), the film is ever-arresting and steeped in the director’s long-standing penchant for period accuracy. Visually stunning and painstakingly choreographed, The Northman perfectly measures up to its epic expectations. The legend chronicled in The Northman feels totally fresh, and at the same time quite familiar. King Aurvandill (Ethan Hawke) is slain by his brother Fjölnir (Claes Bang), who in turn takes the deceased ruler’s throne and Queen Gudrún (Nicole Kidman) for his own. Before succumbing to fratricide, Aurvandill names his young son Amleth (Oscar Novak) as his successor, making him an immediate next target for his uncle’s blade. Narrowly evading capture, Amleth rows a wooden boat over the choppy waters of coastal Ireland, tearfully chanting his new life’s mission: “I will avenge you, father. I will save you, mother. I will kill you, Fjölnir.” Years later, Amleth (played by a muscular yet uniquely unassuming Alexander Skarsgård) has distinguished himself as a ruthless warrior among a clan of Viking berserkers, donning bear pelts and pillaging a series of villages in a furious stupor. The Northman is an accessible, captivating Viking epic teeming with the discordant, tandem force of human brutality and fated connection. Nevertheless, it’s worth mentioning that the film feels noticeably less Eggers-like in execution compared to his preceding works. It boasts a much bigger ensemble, seemingly at the expense of fewer unbroken takes and less atmospheric dread. In the same vein, it eschews the filmmaker’s interest in New England folktales, though The Northman does incorporate Eggers’ fascination with forestry and ocean tides. However, The Northman melds the best of Eggers’ established style—impressive performances, precise historical touchstones, hypnotizing folklore—with the newfound promise of rousing, extended action sequences. The result is consistently entertaining, often shocking and imbued with a scholarly focus. It would be totally unsurprising if this were deemed by audiences as Eggers’ definitive opus. For those already enamored with the director’s previous efforts, The Northman might not feel as revelatory as The Witch or as dynamic at The Lighthouse. What the film lacks in Eggers’ filmic ideals, though, it more than makes up for in its untouchable status as a fast-paced yet fastidious Viking revenge tale. The Northman is totally unrivaled by existing epics—and perhaps even by those that are undoubtedly still to come, likely inspired by the scrupulous vision of a filmmaker in his prime.—Natalia Keogan


1. Everything Everywhere All At Once

everything-everywhere-all-at-once-poster.jpg Release Date: March 25, 2022
Director: Daniel Kwan, Daniel Scheinert
Stars: Michelle Yeoh, Stephanie Hsu, Ke Huy Quan, James Hong, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jenny Slate, Harry Shum Jr.
Rating: R
Runtime: 146 minutes

Everything Everywhere All At Once follows Evelyn Wang (Michelle Yeoh), a jaded, middle-aged laundromat owner who may or may not be involved in some minor tax fraud. Her tedious, repetitive life is thrown into total pandemonium, however, when her husband, Waymond (Ke Huy Quan)—or at least a version of him—alerts her to the existence of the multiverse on the elevator ride to an IRS meeting. He then explains that a powerful villain named Jobu Tupaki is in the process of constructing a universe-destroying force that only Evelyn has the ability to stop. And so Evelyn reluctantly plunges headfirst into the multiverse. The facts: There are an infinite number of universes that exist simultaneously, containing just about anything you could possibly imagine. The rules: To acquire different skills, you must picture a universe in which you inhabit that skill, whether it be inhumanly strong pinky fingers or a mastery of knife-fighting. (If you can think it up, it exists.) What follows, then, are roughly 140 frenetic minutes filled to the brim with dense, complex science, colorful setpieces and scenes that feel like they’ve been pulled straight out of dreams far too abstract to describe. As you can probably gather, Everything is not dissimilar to its title—and a lot to wrap your head around. If all this sounds intimidating (which, let’s be honest, how could it not?), rest assured that Everything is grounded by an effortlessly simple emotional throughline. Indeed, the film contains as much emotional maturity as it does cool concepts and ostentatious images (yes, including a giant butt plug and raccoon chef). At its core, it is a story about love and family, carried by the dazzling Yeoh in a subtle and unsentimental performance. Where Everything’s emotional throughline is Evelyn’s relationship with her family, its visual thread manifests as a series of hypnotic, vertiginous action sequences, choreographed like a ballet by Andy and Brian Le. As a bonus, these sequences recall Yeoh’s iconic role in Ang Lee’s wuxia film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. The directors do not shy away from the use of dizzying flashing lights, or rapidly shifting light sources that disorient the viewer. They also aren’t afraid to implement over-the-top images, like a person’s head exploding into confetti or a butt-naked man flying in slow-motion toward the camera. At the same time, movement between ‘verses feels seamless through Paul Rogers’ meticulous editing, as does the effortless fashion in which different aspect ratios melt into one another. If Everything Everywhere All at Once can be boiled down to one, simple question, it would be reflexive of its own title: Can you really have everything everywhere all at once? Whatever the characters’ answers end up being (I’ll let you discover that on your own), I am certain that the Daniels would say yes, of course you can.—Aurora Amidon