Overview: Following a car accident, a writer reflects on the after effects of the tragedy years later. IFC Films; 2015; Not Rated; 118 minutes.
Fading and Clarit: The story of Every Thing Will Be Fine spans twelve years, starting with a life-altering incident that sees Tomas Eldan (James Franco) at the center. By the end of the film, one of two things can be assumed: First, Wenders intends to obsessively utilize the technique of fading in and out of scenes, second, the fading in and out represents some sort of clarity desired by the characters. The problem is the former technique grows tiresome before the latter symbolism takes effect.
Storytelling Through Omission: Wenders’s late-life method of storytelling through omission can easily be argued as a weakness, particularly against his earlier legendary efforts. His style invokes an internal conversation, one driven by curiosity, to challenge all the what-ifs that linger after vieweing. In this approach, Wenders and his film Every Thing Will Be Fine illustrate a type of reality without minute details and with the overwhelming, fearful sense of unknowing.
The Relativity of Being Fine: The word “fine” typically stands in as a cordial response during new introductions, commonly referenced to a state of not being fine communicated through a passive aggressive tone, and a term of reassurance. Both Tomas and Kate (Charlotte Gainsbourg) cope, their lives parallel in many ways. Tomas steadily gains success as a writer, his success chronologically attributable to the fatal accident involving Kate’s son. The film leans heavily on Tomas, providing a temporary source of comfort in his fragile belief everything is and will be fine. Only Wender’s carefully arranged glimpses does that comfort dissipates. Kate, a commissioned artist, continues to struggle emotionally. Tomas remains unwavering, solid, and stoic, even when a freak accident at the fairgrounds should have caused some sort of response triggering unease or discomfort. Kate appears haphazard and on the brink of a breakdown. Their emotional statuses illustrate the various degrees of being fine, how each individual endures in their own manner, and how it should be universally accepted that a person does not have to share a collective state in order to truly be fine.
Overall: The infinitely looping score downplays narrative progression, and at times the soundtrack seems to almost unintentionally glitch on repeat mode, and Franco, Gainsbourg, and McAdams somehow escape the effects of time, appearing the same throughout twelve years. It is through these minute cinematic gestures that Every Thing Will Be Fine narrates a realistic timeline of healing.