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Crazy Rich Asians Review

Crazy Rich Asians is one of the first American made movies that primarily focuses on an eastern culture.

Crazy Rich Asians has grossed over $230 million at the box office world wide.

Sanja Bucko/Warner Bros

Crazy Rich Asians has grossed over $230 million at the box office world wide.

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As Hollywood progresses in the 21st century, it is critical that cinema reflects its diversity. Not only does it increase diversity in media, but it also broadens the understanding of minorities that were once ostracized through stereotypes in film. “Crazy Rich Asians” does exactly that, sweeping the viewers into modern Asian culture while entertaining them with love and humor.

Plot- 8/10

The plot is almost too straightforward and generic upon first glance. Rachel Chu, a New York University professor, is taken to Singapore by her charming boyfriend, Nick Young, when he decides it is finally time for her to meet his family at his brother’s wedding. However, when Rachel arrives, she is shocked to discover the immense wealth and high social status of his family. Upon meeting Rachel for the first time, Nick’s mother disapproves of her and trouble ensues for Rachel as she begins to further interact with Mrs. Young. Mrs. Young’s disapproval of Rachel is more significant imaginable. It represents a traditional way of thinking that has been passed down for generations in Asian aristocracy. Mrs. Young is under the impression that Rachel’s modest background and upbringing will negatively influence what society thinks of Nick and the entire family in general. Though the plot might sound generic at first, it becomes important in understanding the historical context of relationships among elite society in Asia.

Set and Costume Design- 10/10

“Crazy Rich Asians” shines in its ability to fuse modern and traditional elements into the set and costume design, masterfully crafting an image of Singapore while still maintaining an air of cultural authenticity.
According to vanityfair.com, the costuming in the film is a mixture of luxury, western fashion houses and artistry from the haute couture of Southeast Asia. What really epitomizes the extravagance of the setting is the locally sourced fashion. The majority of costuming in the film comes from Southeast Asian designers, which adds to the prominence of Asian talent.
Another key factor in displaying the prosperity of Rachel’s surroundings is the set design. According to architecturaldigest.com, scenes such as the Young family mansion exhibit a mix of Chinese, Victorian, Malaysian and English characteristics through floral ornamentation, decorative inland mother of pearl furniture, lacquered chairs and louvered shutters. The wedding scene is adorned with lush, tropical plants, red lanterns and even features a decorative river that the bride walks barefoot through to the altar. The decorations at the wedding are unforgettable and never fail to deliver the romantic moment to perfection.

Diversity- 8/10

The prime criticism of the film is the casting of the Singaporean characters. Singapore is a primarily a mix of Chinese, Malaysian and Indian immigrants, however, the presence of Malaysian and Indian actors is almost entirely relinquished in the film. Henry Golding, who portrays Nick Young, is of English and Malaysian descent and seems to be the only prominently featured character not of Chinese descent. “Crazy Rich Asians” is the right step towards diversity in Hollywood, considering that the entire cast was Asian. However, the film is not diverse enough to represent the vast cultural variation of Singapore. Nonetheless, there still are cast members that display incredible talent. Awkwafina, a breakout actress of Chinese and Korean descent, portrays Goh Peik Lin, Rachel’s wealthy college friend who delivers an abundance of laughs throughout the film.

Overall rating: 8/10

“Crazy Rich Asians” is a great start towards breaking the norms of Hollywood, even if it still has a few things to change. Overall, it contains assorted elements that make it an outstanding piece of cinema. From plot to styling and set design to noteworthy performances, the film displays interesting insight into the contemporary atmosphere of Asian wealth and dazzles.

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Crazy Rich Asians Review