All I knew going into this movie was that a number of my friends and acquaintances (most of whom, it should be said, do not know what “A24” is) instantly called it their new favorite movie ever. I cannot blame them!
This movie reminded me a lot — a lot — of Legion ↗, and it was unsurprising to discover that Daniels were also co-directors of a Legion episode. That show remains criminally underrated; it did things, visually, that I had never seen a television show do nor have seen since.
Whereas Legion had fairly humdrum star performances anchored by an absolutely terrific supporting cast, the acting here was universally strong: the praise of course has been mostly (and deservedly) heaped on Michelle Yeoh but I thought Stephanie Hsu and Ke Huy Quan (and Jamie Lee Curtis’ wonderfully physical performance) were equally wonderful.
The script, like in Legion, was fine but more of an afterthought. The core narrative and message were solid but not exemplary; it was how the film used the medium to explore and exploit them that was exemplary.
This isn’t my favorite movie; I don’t think it’s my favorite movie I watched this year (Drive My Car ↗ still holds that belt). But it certainly was the most memorable, and most fun, and most audacious, and I loved it a lot.
(And of course I cried. I cried during the rocks scene; I cried during the In The Mood For Love homage).)