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Why the film to beat going into Sunday’s Oscars is “Everything Everywhere Everything at Once”

We never would have predicted that a movie with singing raccoons and hot-dog hands would win best picture a year ago.

Yet with 11 nominations, “Everything Everywhere All at Once” is expected to win the most awards at the Oscars on Sunday (ABC, 8 EDT/5 PDT). The moving sci-fi adventure has dominated the awards season after impressing audiences and reviewers alike, taking home record-breaking prizes at last week’s Screen Actors Guild and Independent Spirit Awards.

Last year, co-director Daniel Kwan told USA TODAY, “We’re proud weirdos. “I’m overjoyed that this narrative is striking a chord with others. We put a lot of effort into making sure it felt authentic.

Everything you should know about the improbable Oscar front-runner is as follows:

The Daniels’ multiverse-jumping family drama “Everything Everywhere Everything at Once”

In “Everything Everywhere,” Michelle Yeoh plays Chinese immigrant and laundry owner Evelyn Wong, who is unhappy with her existence. She tries to talk to her gay daughter Joy (Stephanie Hsu) and estranged husband Waymond (Ke Huy Quan), until one day she is transported to an other universe and given the assignment of destroying an evil entity.

Daniel Scheinert, who co-directs the film with Kwan, adds, “We admire Charlie Kaufman, Douglas Adams, and Kurt Vonnegut – individuals who have a sense of humour about extremely huge, profound themes. Thus, the multiverse was one of the theories that we frequently tossed around because of how absurd they are.

The yearning for real connection is explored, along with mental health issues and generational differences. After encountering numerous different realities and timelines, Evelyn finally discovers how to communicate with her family, which leads to a tearful reunion in a parking lot.

I enjoy making fun of that sequence because it resembles the conclusion of a rom-com, adds Kwan. But it feels extremely profound to just let them say what they want in a movie where they spend the entire time talking past each other and live in different universes.

Perhaps making Oscar history are Michelle Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan.

After turns as a young boy in the 1980s blockbusters “The Goonies” and “Indiana Jones,” Quan, 51, has made a long-awaited comeback. With significant victories and heartwarming speeches at the Golden Globes, Critics’ Choice, and SAG Awards, he has all but swept the best supporting actor category this year. If he wins again at the Oscars, he will join Haing S. Ngor as the only Asian actors to have won the award for the film “The Killing Fields” in 1984.

While Cate Blanchett (“Tár”) and adored industry veteran Yeoh, 60, have been neck and neck for best actress the entire season, Yeoh has recently risen owing to victories at the Spirit Awards and SAG Awards. Yeoh will follow Halle Berry for the 2001 film “Monster’s Ball” as the only other woman of colour to win best actress if she wins the Oscar on Sunday.

Joy and Jobu Tupaki are two characters that Stephanie Hsu takes on.

Although Yeoh and Quan have won the majority of awards, Hsu may have the most difficult task playing Joy, who yearns for her mother’s approval. Evelyn battles Joy’s nihilistic alter ego Jobu Tupaki across parallel universes, who threatens to wipe out everything with the aid of a massive, black-hole-like bagel.

If nothing else counts, why don’t I just blow your head up into confetti, says Jobu. Hsu claims. The 32-year-old actress, who also stars in “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” considers the Daniels’ script to be “one of the best I’ve ever read” because it combines “super-silly physical comedy” with “heartfelt, really sincere storytelling.”

There are these incredibly deep sentiments of compassion and kindness, claims Hsu. “You can try to escape from someone, but they will always follow you no matter where you go or what reality you visit. That philosophy is really Zen and cosmic.

When it comes to “Everything Everywhere,” Curtis, who plays the absurdly named tax auditor Deirdre Beaubeirdre, is the biggest fan. Since the movie’s premiere in the spring of last year, the actress has been a self-described “weapon of mass promotion,” and she gained notoriety for her jubilant response to Yeoh’s Golden Globes victory.

On Sunday, Curtis might also go get her own hardware. She shocked the SAG Awards with a triumph in the supporting actress category, defeating expected front-runners Kerry Condon and Angela Bassett (“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”) (“The Banshees of Inisherin”). The “Halloween” actress made fun of her “nepo baby” moniker while praising her parents, actresses Janet Leigh and Tony Curtis, in her victory speech. I completely understand,” she replied. But the fact is, this is simply remarkable, and I’m 64 years old.

Where to watch “Everywhere All at Once” online

After receiving a record number of Oscar nominations, “Everything Everywhere” went back into theatres and is still showing today. Nevertheless, you can also watch it on demand at home with a Showtime subscription or a free seven-day trial through Amazon Prime Video.

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