Sunday, January 22, 2012

Everything Must Go (Film 2011)

by Dionysuspsyche

Nick has what can only be described as one of the worst days of his life. After many years as a salesman, he is let go, given only a trinket as a souvenior as his time with them. To make matters worse, his wife, now ex-wife, has excavated him from their house and has put all his things on the lawn.

He meets a boy down the street, and ends up teaching him the art of salesmanship and connecting/helping his audience. What Nick lacks in real life, he makes up for in mentorship. Kenny, the boy, and Nick teach each other important lessons about life. One of the lessons? The name of this movie.

I hesitate to call this a dark comedy, but at times that is what it mimics. This is a story about coming to grips with your situation and not taking those around you for granted. Nick's current reality unravels for him to pick up the threads and begin reweaving his life.

My feelings on this movie were mixed. It's a Sundance film, so you know it's not going to be your carbon copy Hollywood hit. It has a good lesson, but parts of this movie are extremely screwed up, bizarre, and unfair (which is true of art imitating life). Awkwardness abound, but heartwarming also. Hard to watch at times and off, but also different than many of the other films I watched. It's like American Beauty without all the death, dream sequences, and sexuality. I would like to say that many of the step-by-step situations in this film seem manipulated and not true to life—although maybe these were important metaphors that I missed.

The messages are important: don't let your addictions/failures/lack of effort take over your life. Resolve your problems with your spouse/family members, and when it's time to move on, although there will be sorrow, grief, and reluctance, it must happen sooner or later.

For anyone who's going through a life crisis or trying to move beyond your past or if you're thinking of having a garage sale, this one's for you. If not, it's probably not up your alley.


  1. Oh my god, J and I watched this movie a month or so ago and it was SO DEPRESSING.

    Had to watch Happy Feet right afterwards. :P

    That isn't to say that Everything Must Go is bad, but it isn't as quirky and amusing as, say, Eternal Sunshine. This is darker fare.

  2. I know. It wasn't my favorite. I feel like an older person might appreciate it more.