The 95th annual Academy Awards were held this past Sunday, inciting excitement, anger, and lots of tears amongst celebrities and fans alike.
However, the wins that inspired the most conversation was the sweep by A24 hit Everything Everywhere All At Once.
Everything Everywhere All At Once follows the journey of Evelyn Wang as she tries to save humanity by jumping through different dimensions, each holding a different life path for her, her husband Waymond, and their daughter Joy.
Ke Huy Quan, who won Best Supporting Actor for his role as Waymond in the film, gave a touching and inspiring speech about perseverance and discipline.
“My story began on a boat, I spent a year in a refugee camp,” Quan said. “And somehow, I ended up here on Hollywood’s biggest stage.”
For East’s Asian Student Association, the wins mean much more than just a golden statue.
ASA board member senior Nuria Kim said that Quan’s speech made her tear up and think about where she and her family came from.
“A lot of ASA members’ families, like their parents or grandparents, immigrated from countries in Asia,” Kim said. “So seeing [Quan], who has a similar story to people some of us know, win the Oscar made me think we’re taking a step in the right direction.”
The film not only playfully addresses the multiverse theory, made popular in film by the Avengers franchise, but also dives deep into the struggles of a middle-class, Chinese-American family, and the generational trauma that permeates throughout it.
Senior Board member Abigail Galleta said that the win signaled a shift in the conversation about family issues in Asian households.
“I’m glad that a movie about generational trauma has been recognized by one of the largest stages,” Galleta said. “[Everything Everywhere All At Once] executed the topic very well and with respect.”
Michelle Yeoh, 60, who played Evelyn, won the Best Actress award and was the first Asian woman to do so. Her win also comes after decades in the film industry, with her breakout role in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000). Her speech was powerful and emotional, as she talked about breaking the glass ceiling as an Asian woman, and as a woman who has been considered “too old”.
“For all the little boys and girls who look like me, this is a beacon of hope and possibility,” Yeoh said. “And ladies, don’t let anyone ever tell you that you are past your prime.”
Board member Nghi Tran said that Yeoh’s win touched her and her family, and her encouraging words will inspire young Asian actors and actors whose age may have prohibited them from getting work.
“[Yeoh] was one of the only Asian actresses I remember watching growing up,” Tran said. “Seeing her finally get her flowers means a lot to me and I’m sure it means a lot more for those who want to act.”
Everything Everywhere All At Once is now confirmed to be the most awarded film of all time, with 165 accolades. The Best Picture winner is available for streaming on Hulu.
Kelsey Gara is a staff editor for Oswego East’s online news magazine The Howl