Mini Review: Crazy Rich Asians
Ever gone to your kid’s, or your babysitter’s, nephew’s, whatever, highschool production of… pretty much anything grownup, maybe Cabaret or South Pacific, and while registering it as nonsense in the grand scheme of theatre, admire the show for all of its hardwork and charms? Thats how I felt about Crazy Rich Asians.
Everyone, every scene, is trying so, so hard to nail this class-difference rom com (box office says they succeeded) but the result is a shiny opulent mess. We are asked to suspend disbelief in the silly Romeo and Juliet plot, even though we are given the grounded and lovely Constance Wu as our lead, somehow the smart girl who never asked about her billionaire beloved’s family background. Great to dive into Singapore, and cheer for our heroine as she fights for love, but the tone of judgey Bourgeoisie versus?err, or taking over from?? or expecting?? culturally traditional values is all over the place. The baddies are old-world bad, including Michelle Yeoh as the not-so-nice matriach, the sets are lavish (the “Rich” part, as promised), and, aside from the hard working Awkwafina as a conveniently placed buddy for the duck-out-of-water Wu, almost everyone is soap opera acting.
But, somehow, fun.
A former ABC National, Dallas and Atlanta radio personality, Martina O'Boyle is now making movies and covering culture in London, Dublin, and as far in Europe as the cheapie flights will take her, for Pop Culture Beast.