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August 31, 2018

Crazy Rich Asians (2018) --- "The Only Thing Crazier Than Love Is Family."

Plot Summary
Rachel Chu is happy to accompany her longtime boyfriend, Nick, to his best friend's wedding in Singapore. She's also surprised to learn that Nick's family is extremely wealthy and he's considered one of the country's most eligible bachelors. Thrust into the spotlight, Rachel must now contend with jealous socialites, quirky relatives and something far, far worse -- Nick's disapproving mother. (1).

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Hello, Movie Buffs!
     Directed by Jon Chu (Now You See Me 2), screenplay written by Peter Chiarelli and Adele Lim, and based on Kevin Kwan’s bestseller – Crazy Rich Asians (2018) is a hilarious romantic-comedy (rom-com) with an ostentatious style and a visual opulence. In recent years there have not been many good rom-coms. Sure some have been sweet and others have been borderline vulgar but the fact of the matter is that over the last decade rom-coms have been on a decline. However, Crazy Rich Asians not only restores the genre but also adds to it.

     I am truly ecstatic that Crazy Rich Asians has attracted so much positive attention and that it has sparked a lot of conversations for its representation of Asian cultures. Considering that the term ‘Asian’ encompasses so many diverse cultures, it is ironic that this light romantic-comedy is carrying this much weight. This wide representation of an all Asian cast from a Hollywood film has not been done in over 25 years, not since The Joy Luck Club (1993). In addition, this is also a major milestone as a cultural phenomenon of the Asian culture, similar to Wonder Woman (2017) for its major representation for women and Black Panther (2018) for its major representation for blacks.
      In my opinion, Crazy Rich Asians is one of the best rom-coms since Roxanne (1987), The Princess Bride (1987) Sleepless in Seattle (1993), Father of the Bride 1 & 2 (1991 & 1995), The Bachelor (1999), Maid in Manhattan (2002) 50 First Dates (2004), Bridesmaids (2011), and Table 19 (2017). With Chu’s direction, writers Peter Chiarelli (Now You See Me 2) and Adele Lim (Reign and Dynasty) are able to bring Kevin Kwan’s book to life. The screenplay is brilliant and fascinating with some romantic elements from Richard Curtis' Love Actually (2003) and some comedic elements from Bridesmaids.
     This is a story where a normal girl meets prince charming and is thrown into a world she's never even dreamed of, where she must fight for what she believes in through some funny and some not so funny encounters. It’s a sort of Cinderella meets Sex in the City type of movie. The story reminds us to follow our hearts but not to forget to remain true to ourselves and have some fun along the way. There is always a way to improve your circumstance even if it seems like everyone is against you. The fashion is gorgeous and the sets are stunning featuring a wedding that is beyond my wildest imaginations
     The cast was amazing in their respective roles and even the one that you don’t like at first, you have to admit are still pretty good. Constance Wu (Fresh off the Boat) is radiantly beautiful and authentically funny as Rachel Cu. Henry Golding (A Simple Favor) has vast charm and inner strength as Nick Young. It is clear when he looks at Rachel how much he loves her and vice versa. Michelle Yeoh (Star Trek: Discovery) is powerful and eloquent as Eleanor Young, and even though you may not like her at first she starts to grow on you before the end. You can see how she only wants the best for her son and doesn’t want him to throw away his family legacy or face similar hardships she faced when she married into the family. Awkwafina (Oceans 8) is great as Rachel bleached blonde free-spirited former college roommate, Peik Lin. She is masterfully whimsical, hilarious, and is one of the perfect people to help guide Rachel in this new and glamorous world of the rich. The rest of the cast is beautiful, funny, and have interesting character arcs that add to the film entirely.

     Overall, Crazy Rich Asians (2018) is a long-awaited rom-com that takes audiences on fun and colorful ride for 2 hours. I am truly ecstatic that Crazy Rich Asians has attracted so much positive attention and that it has sparked a lot of conversations for its representation of Asian cultures. The story is a Cinderella meets Sex in the City with romantic elements from Love Actually (2003 and some comedic elements from Bridesmaids (2011). The cast is funny and honest in their performances, the visuals are stunningly colorful, and the fashion is beautiful. I highly recommend that you see this while it is still in theaters.

"I'm so Chinese. I'm an econ professor that's lactose intolerant."
- Rachel Chu

Final Vote
Worth Seeing:  9 of 10 star
Worth Buying:  9 of 10 stars

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