If you’re like me and always looking for a unique movie, “Crazy Rich Asians” just hit the theater, and it isn’t what you’re looking for, at all. That isn’t a critique. The most unique thing “Crazy Rich Asians” has going for it is an entirely Asian cast, something that we haven’t seen from American media since “The Joy Luck Club” in 1993. However, beyond that novel casting call, the real draw from “Crazy Rich Asians” is the seamless blend between a romance story we’ve all seen and heard a thousand times with a keen look into the Asian culture. Like walking through a familiar forest path but with a new pair of shoes, “Crazy Rich Asians” gives a fresh perspective in something we’ve experienced before.
Given a 93 percent on websites like Rotten Tomatoes and a 7.7 out of 10 on IMDB, “Crazy Rich Asians” is exactly what America didn’t know it wanted. We live our lives from screen to screen, and it is through this particular piece of cinema that we are allowed a peak into the beautiful conflict of high-class society, through the eyes of a common Economics Professor Rachel Chu and how she deals with the push back of her boyfriend’s large family. The throwback to an older style of humor with overblown jokes that seem to make you smile out of nostalgia and pure amusement of some of the wild zany characters seen in this film, will make even an infamous nitpicker, like me, laugh.
Almost even more interesting, is when you take a quick peak underneath the inner workings of what made “Crazy Rich Asians” what we see today. Initially a comedic novel by Kevin Kwan, it was when interest rose for whitewashing the main character, that Kevin Kwan sold the rights for the book for $1, with the caveat that he would have a major role in development and creative rights during the production of the movie. After the rights for adapting the novel into a movie were acquired by producer Nina Jacobson in 2014, “Crazy Rich Asians” went through a passionate development stage before being purchased by Warner Bros., narrowly beating out Netflix in a bidding war.
There was a reason we kept seeing rom-coms, even the bad ones, and “Crazy Rich Asians”, in my opinion, reminded us of it.
Story by Payton Fletcher, Staff Writer. Photo courtesy of Slate.