The Blood-Curdling Sadness of All of Us Strangers

I took my mom to see All of Us Strangers over the break, after American Fiction had sold out and Poor Things had seemed a bit explicit for a family viewing. She liked the movie but noted that the conclusion had confused her: Why wasn’t Adam sadder in the end? After all, the final “twist” of the film is unambiguously devastating, and he does seem to take it fairly well. I found it less frustrating from a narrative perspective, but nonetheless troubling for the film’s conclusion. Sold as this year’s  “most likely to make you cry” film, All of Us Strangers does not simply tug at the heartstrings or offer a moment of cathartic melancholy, but rather renders in its viewer a sense of unshakeable loneliness, as necessary to the human condition as is its denial to a peaceful existence.