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The Beauty of A24

Everything Everywhere All At Once, X and Midsommar. What do all these highly disparate films have in common? If you guessed correctly, you would have said that they are all made by the same film company A24. 

Founded in 2012 by a group of three friends: David Fenkel, Daniel Katz and John Hodges, the company started off as a film distribution organization. Essentially, they would buy the rights to certain films, edit them, and then screen them in theaters. Starting in 2016, A24 became an independent production company, as they produced their first movie “Moonlight,” a film that received eight grammy nominations and won best picture at the 89th Academy Awards. 

Trailing this success, A24 continues to create unique and captivating films by utilizing colorful lighting, social media virality, unconventional storytelling, complex themes and narrative depth through the creative freedom of independent filmmakers. 

Out of all the films A24 have produced, there are three that capture the ultimate essence of the film company: “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” “X” and “Midsommar”. 


Everything Everywhere All At Once: Unpacking Generational Trauma Through a Unique Storyline

In what world would anyone think that talking rocks could pull on the heartstrings of viewers? Well, in the universe of “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” the main character Evelyn is seen literally being everything and everywhere all at once — even a rock. 

After gaining the ability to become every version of herself in the multiverse, Evelyn possesses every imaginable skill possible. From becoming a master at thumb martial arts to practicing magic, she uses her newfound abilities to fight an evil alteration of her daughter, Jobu Tupaki. Although the film sounds like an action packed movie, its thematic messages are rather deep and moving. 

Covering the generational trauma passed on through Asian families, the film depicts what going against the status quo looks like in traditional households. Disappointment, regret and depression. Conveyed by the character Joy, the original daughter of Evelyn, Joy finds it difficult to express herself to her mother, knowing that her mom shuns her queer relationship with her girlfriend. 

As a result, her alter ego Jobu Tupaki, aims to destroy the world by embracing a nihilistic mindset which serves as a major theme to the film, based on the idea that life is meaningless. This idea is highly present throughout the film as a justification behind Tupaki’s destruction of the world, how for her, “nothing matters,” even the universe.  

Aside from that, the expression of love in Asian families is another prominent concept depicted within the movie. The mother and daughter relationship of Joy and Evelyn is shown consistently in the film — as the movie progresses, viewers become aware that Evelyn struggles to communicate herself to her daughter, and vice versa. 

This depiction of generational trauma and love is presented in such an unconventional yet artistic manner that Everything Everywhere All At Once is a film which perfectly embodies the elements of A24.


X: Unconventional Horror Perfect For Social Media Virality

Oftentimes horror movies follow a group of highschool students or adults who end up in a deserted region near the forest where they are hunted by a killer. However, “X” is nothing of the sort. Based around a group of adult filmmakers, actors and actresses, they rent out a barn in which they film explicit content. 

Already from the get-go of the film, viewers are introduced to an extremely unorthodox plot line. By incorporating taboo elements such as the adult film industry with horror, A24 creates a sense of social media virality within the film. A24 further amplifies the film’s social media virality by introducing the main villain Pearl. 

What makes Pearl perfect to go viral is because she is not your typical antagonist. Most killers in horror films are often tall giants who hold menacing weapons and masks, however, Pearl is simply a frail grandma who has severe mental issues. Her dynamic as a villain not only exudes a sense of intense hostility, but it also creates a sense of comedy. 

Resultantly, the film manages to include creepy elements and violent kills, yet maintain a sense of humor via the main killer, an unorthodox strategy that has been yet to be used by any other production company. Hence, the film X went extremely viral on numerous platforms such as TikTok, Twitter, Instagram and more, accumulating over millions of views. 


Midsommar: Employing Videography And Colors To Illustrate Themes

For the majority of horror films, production companies often use dark lighting and eerie settings to capture the essence of terror. However, for “Midsommar,” the majority of the film takes place during the day, where beautiful grass fields of flowers are depicted. 

The film follows a group of adults who take retreat within a community of cult members. This cult participates in highly violent and unethical traditions as well having numerous sketchy aspects to their validity. From brainwashing their members to holding human sacrificial ceremonies, the group of adults struggle to grasp what is truly going on behind them. 

Even though the plot is extremely dark, only extremely beautiful images are shown. With the camera capturing breathtaking imagery of nature, the videography of the film is top-tier. The usage of unique transitions, color theory, and design elements make the film very visually appealing while still managing to make every shot have an overarching theme of anxiety and fear. The visualization of the film is what makes it a perfect representation of A24: using polarizing imagery to depict a certain mood. 



From producing movies related to traveling the multiverse to dealing with a grandma lunatic, A24’s versatility and distinctness makes it unique: they manage to make the unconventional conventional by embracing the unorthodox visions of their filmmakers. 

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Noah Kang
Noah Kang, Writer

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