Diversity. Welcome to Hollywood diversity.
Finally we see a big Asian movie from Hollywood. Crazy Rich Asians is so much yum, you get to see the good and the bad, the mix of East and the West.
Hey we're all humans right? But of course we don't treat each other as equals at all. Not everyone does. In the far future we might be seeing "robot rights" too but that's another story.
Anyway let me just start my movie review. Don't worry, no major spoilers here. 😊
❤️-- The Cast --❤️
Okay, so let me tell you about some of the cast members/characters in this movie.
Constance Wu plays Rachel Chu
She is an Economics professor at NYU. She has been dating Nick for more than a year.
Henry Golding plays Nick Young
He is the rich heir of a Singaporean real estate mogul. Belongs to an old rich family but works in NYU as well.
Michelle Yeoh plays Eleanor Sung-Young
She is Nick's strict mom.
Gemma Chan plays Astrid Leong-Teo
Nick's cousin, one of those friendly to Rachel.
Nico Santos plays Oliver T'sien
He is Nick's homosexual second cousin.
Akwafina plays Goh Peik Lin
She is the lesbian Singaporean college best friend of Rachel Chu.
Ken Jeong plays Goh Wye Mun
He is Peik Lin's wealthy father.
Kris Aquino plays Princess Intan
She is a Malay princess.
❤️-- Synopsis --❤️
A New York University (NYU) professor goes to Singapore, upon her boyfriend's invite, to attend his best friend's wedding. What she didn't know is it's the "Singaporean wedding of the year" and that her boyfriend is actually super rich. What happens next is a string of rich people/middle class Asian and American perspective on life and love.
❤️-- The Trailer --❤️
If you want to see what it's all about, watch the trailer below.
❤️-- My Review --❤️
I. Characters & Story
The story might be seen as one of those typical Korean Drama shows with an American twist. Not that it's completely like a soap opera but it's something we are all familiar with. The rags to riches angle is always such a hit to us common people.
A lot of us want to marry into rich families instead of working hard and smart and honestly building our own finances. No wonder the term gold digger is carelessly thrown everywhere whenever the old or new rich see poor or middle class people in their circles.
I have never read the book/s so watching the movie was refreshing. I can't even think of any movie similar to it. The characters are somewhat familiar though because we have our own Chinese Filipino rich/poor movie series called Mano Po.
Crazy Rich Asians do not have the same kind of drama we see in KDramas or Pinoy movies and soap operas. It's clearly an American Asian film with a Western look into the Eastern life and I'm fine with it.
It still has the Asian vibe down pat - from the gossipy and subdued female cattiness to the respectful but discriminating Asian lifestyle. If Westerners discriminate on Asians, Asians have their own nationality based discrimination too.
The characters are relatable even if most of them are rich. There are funny, sad and lovable scenes too. There's also an unnecessary scene somewhere in there. I don't really get what it was for except to make people drool maybe? 😂 Perhaps that was the point? 😂
Anyway, the best characters in my book are the ones which Akwafina and Nico Santos played. They can be an item too. Hahaha. ❤️ Sorry not sorry but I love their chemistry more than the lead actors.
Also, the best movie line goes to Astrid. What she said to her husband near the end, it's what we Filipinos can call a "Boom panis!" or burn moment. 😂
I couldn't relate with the mahjong scene though... Simply because I don't play it. 😂 I used to randomly/rarely play it on a computer but I never bothered to know more about it at all. The context is well delivered even with the unfamiliarity so it's all good.
Of course I wanted to see what the buzz about this movie was all about. I wouldn't have watched it if not for a local veteran actress' role in it.
Kris Aquino auditioned for a part in the movie and it's amazing that she got one. I didn't even know the book author wanted her to be part of the movie as he was also eyeing the Philippines as a market for the film.
Even with the author's preference for her, I read an article on how she really prepared for the audition etc., and I'm just proud of her being able to get in the film.
The role fit Kris perfectly, and it's like she didn't even need to act the part. Haha. She got her "5 minutes" of Hollywood fame because she is a personality in the movie too.
I'm very happy to see two Filipino actors representing us in the movie. (Nico Santos is the other one.) Yes the maids are also Filipinos but what does it matter? Everyone works where they can find work. We each choose what kind of work we end up doing in life.
The leads and major actors aren't too bad as well. They did their best in terms of the people they portray. The comedians are able to make us laugh without having to resort to excessive slapstick and "Rachel's mom" did a good job too.
III. Cinematography, Production Design and Music (CPM)
What I didn't expect to see in Crazy Rich Asians are how the city night lights make Singapore look amazing! My friend said it really does look like that. (Amazing how other people have been going out of the country except me. Hahaha.)
It also has a fresh and modern vibe. It's not stiff or boring at all. It has the right amount of necessary subtitles too. (Imagine watching a Filipino movie with English subtitles in the Philippines. Ugh. That's annoying and totally unnecessary. But then again aren't we Filipinos super hospitable to the point that we think of foreigners who will watch our movies in our own country more than ourselves?)
I really saw the dedication and attention to detail they did to create the movie. The location, costumes and the props are great. The bachelor and bachelorette parties are what I can only dream of being in one day. 😅 And the wedding, oh my. The wedding entrance scene is the best. It's just wow, like a fantasy wedding.
The houses look fantastic and rich indeed. And the music, ah the wedding song is just ❤️. There are also familiar English songs sung in Chinese interspersed with some scenes.
Man I felt assaulted by Chinese everywhere when even the opening song is in Chinese. Whew. I should have read movie reviews before I watched the movie. I went in there without any expectations except seeing two of our kababayan (countrymen) and Ken Jeong in the movie.
(I just have issues with Chinese people hogging our waters and bullying our countrymen. Now they are even stealing and selling our own fish to us? I mean wtf China, you don't have your own fish ponds you even take fish from our waters? 😣 Not effing funny. Geddemmet. Summady help China, I think they have issues. Then again, the Philippines ain't perfect too.)
Even if it seems like a perfect Asian Hollywood movie, I cannot rate it a perfect 10. As Nico Santos said, "it should be allowed to fail." Of course it's far from being a failure because it is now a box office hit with a sequel in the works.
Even if the movie is fantastic, there is a little something that does not click with me. I haven't figured it out yet so let me just go on with the rating.
• Characters & Story: 9
• Acting: 8
• CPM: 9.5
Total rating: 8.83 out of 10
How about you, have you seen the movie yet? If not I think you will find something to love or hate in it.
Personally I felt much worse than Rachel, thinking about what if I was in her shoes. Hahaha. I prefer to live an uncomplicated and private life. 😊
Anyway, today was a holiday so it was nice to watch a movie and catch up with a friend.
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