The movie Everything, Everywhere All at once is about our lives online

Under the pretext of exploring parallel universes, this excellent sci-fi film describes this “funny feeling” of derealization that comes over us when we live a large part of our lives online.

A 50-year-old woman consumed by laundry, her passions, her family, her daughter who is coming out and her husband who is seeking a divorce, Evelyn Wang discovers overnight that parallel universes exist and, by visiting them, she has the power to save the world from imminent extinction. Here is a brief summary of Everything Everywhere At Oncean extremely dense and insane film from directors Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert (Daniels).

Although it was released two months ago on our screens (and more than 6 months in the United States), this film that can be described as hypermodern continues to fascinate viewers. On YouTube, this fable in the multiverse has generated dozens of video analyzes interpreting the smallest scene under various prisms such as Buddhist spirituality, mental illness and in particular ADHD disorders or suicidal thoughts. But there is one essential aspect that is at the heart of this cosmic adventure and that interests us in particular: Everything Everywhere At Once it’s a movie about what the internet has produced in our minds.

Welcome to the world of the internet

To understand this analysis, we will have to do some spoilers. The big bad of the film that Evelyn must fight against is Jobu Tupaki, a young girl who lived through the traumatic experience of the multiverse in all its vastness. Able to perceive all parallel dimensions at once, she found herself plunged into a profound existential crisis. Indeed, how can we give it importance or meaning when we have seen it all, experienced it all, and it all seems worth it? This nihilistic character who wants to sink reality into a black hole (symbolized in the film by a donut) comes from the Alpha dimension. This name has its importance as it defines as the first dimension where humanity discovered the journey between parallel universes, but also the Alpha generation, that is, the children who were born at the beginning of 2010, in a world where the Internet is ubiquitous. and has revolutionized our way of life. In a way, Jobu Tupaki is the representation of this new hyper-connected generation, able as shifters, to live a multitude of lives by proxybut finding no meaning anywhere.

“Wubba Lubba dub-dub”

This figure of the man who has become a nihilist after living a thousand and one realities is not entirely new. This is also the topic of rik and morti, another great series centered on parallel realities. In this 2013 cartoon created by Dan Harmon, Rick Sanchez’s character is a jaded scientist who has been through so many unbelievable or disastrous things that he finds it hard to care about anything outside of his ego giant. He includes his nephew Morty in his adventures and thus allows the audience to experience, through the eyes of this naive character, the effect of the multiverse on the mind. In an episode of the first season, Rick and Morty are forced to leave their home universe to take refuge in a reality where they both died in an explosion. After burying their mates at the bottom of the garden, Morty will experience his first existential crisis declaring to his sister “nobody exists on purpose, nobody belongs anywhere, everybody’s gonna die. Come see TV. »

In the same way as Everything Everywhere At Once considered as Matrix of the 2020s, Rick and Morty is perceived by its fans as The Simpsons in their time, that is, as a work that resonates in an almost perfect way what resides in our collective psyche. These two works explore this exaltation, but also this existential emptiness that can be felt when you spend your life connected to other worlds. But to understand this feeling and relate it to our online lives, we need a third work that can serve as a key. And this key is called within by Bo Burnham.

“That funny feeling”

For those who don’t know, Bo Burnam is a musician and stand-up comedian who started his career on YouTube in 2006. A true internet veteran, Bo marked the post-Covid era by releasing in 2021 within, a show shot entirely at home alone during the shutdown and streamed on Netflix. Its parts like Welcome to the Internet (whose lyrics read “can I care about everything all the time”), Jeff Bezos, The white woman’s Instagram or even All eyes on mee, have become classics for young Americans who have spent almost a year confined to the networks. If the whole album within explores the collective madness we experience as a connected species, this is definitely his track It felt funny which best sums up the existential void caused by the Internet multiverse.

In the lyrics, Bo lists Clashes on Twitterthe videos of mass shootingsbooks ordered on Amazon delivered by drone, of resume live action from the movie King Leon and all that other unrelated information that we can experience in less than an hour of surfing the Internet. This “funny feeling” that Bo Burnam speaks of may be that of overwhelm or derealization that grips us when we are faced with an endless loop of new images and parallel lives that we practically constantly face until it all blends together in so that it no longer has any importance. If it is accepted that the Web changes our cognitive functioning and in particular our ability to pay attention and reflect, it can also exhaust what allows us, deep inside, to give meaning to our existence. But the internet has now become everyone’s refuge a generation aware that the end of our civilization may be imminent due to climate change. Caught between the adult world that pretends not to see the wall coming and a hypermedia environment that drives you crazy, alphas live alone and collectively in cognitive dissonance. This is the last warningEverything Everywhere At Once. If we do nothing, then a whole generation will turn into Jobu Tupaki.

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