Mosky reviews the new “Crazy Rich Asians.”
Crazy Rich Asians (aka CRA) has made a boatload of money worldwide. $160
Million plus to be exact. 40% of the audience has been Asians who see CRA as
spot on reflective of their culture. CRA does for Asians what "Black Panther"
did for Black culture. Plus, it's been 25 years since the film "The Joy Luck
Club" came out and any movie had an all Asian cast.
However, if you're NOT Asian, you will find this film trying TOO HARD to
replicate American style humor as the timing is a bit off and somewhat
alinenating assuming you are a fly on the wall observing rich people with
different problem from not so rich people.
The film is a take off based on a 2013 novel by Kevin Kwan, about a NYU
college professor, played by Constance Wu, who goes with her boyfriend, played
by Henry Golding, to attend his BFF's wedding. There she meets a guy's
ultra-traditionalist family and discovers - wait for it - he's really rich.
Now for the good and bad about this attempt by Hollywood to bring cultural
diversity to the screen and be funny at the same time.
It pissed me off those people from Singapore made fun of the Asian-American
woman lead of the film, the Rachel Chu character, played by Constance Wu and
the fact that she was a NYU professor of ECONOMICS and GAME THEORY. It seemed
a little TOO convenient that during a latter film scene when Rachel plays
mahjong with her boyfriend’s stiff and stern mom, and uses some game theory
strategy to win.
The cinematography and the exotic locations showed the audience that Singapore
is a world class location. Plus there were a few moving moments watching
Rachel go through the roller coaster ride of trying to please her boyfriends
mom, but falling short. Constance Wu does a brilliant job making you feel
empathetic towards her trials and tribulations throughout the film. And the
standout - at least to me - when it comes to performances, was the Akwafina
character who’s one of Rachel's boyfriend’s relative.
The best line of the film was said by Rachel at the beginning of the film when
her boyfriend asks her to go to Singapore to attend his BFF’s wedding, and
to meet his family: “You mean the Far East - like Queens?”
What makes me go “ugh.” is word the studio will be making a “CRA”
sequel. However, the book series is a trilogy, so sequels are inevitable if
CRA did well.
Odds in Vegas are the sequel will not be as good. But hey, that's Hollywood
today. The last creative story teller has left and taken the last train to
places unknown. In any case, CRA is entertaining and worth watching. I give
CRA … three Mosky’s.