Friday, September 07, 2018

My Weekend Crush

Rarely do you get to say, “I laughed, I cried,” about a movie and mean it. But, kittens, do I mean it about “Crazy Rich Asians.” What a well-crafted, beautifully appointed, wonderfully cast and all-around scrumptious movie. I finally got a chance to go see it last weekend and – despite all the glowing reviews – was not prepared for just how good this movie would make me feel. As an Asian-American woman, as an immigrant, as a person who loves good romantic comedies it was everything I could have hoped for. Funny, romantic, sad, funny some more and just absolutely luscious to look at.

And let’s talk a little more about what it means to have a movie filled with such Asian Attractiveness and Asian Excellence. I was both acutely aware and sometimes completely forgot that the cast was all Asian. There was a universality and specificity to the story that is wonderful to behold. Like, even if you’ve never played mahjong, you understand the import of that scene. And if you do play mahjong, goodness.

Also, did I mention how attractive this cast is? Because this cast is very attractive.

You can count the Asian-led mainstream Hollywood films on two fingers: “The Joy Luck Club” in 1993 and “Memoirs of a Geisha” in 2005. There are 4.5 billion Asian people yet Hollywood can only find time to make a movie about us every 12 or so years? It’s even more outrageous when you consider the entire world only has 7.4 billion people, total. Thanks, guys, appreciate the effort. It’s not like there are a lot of us or anything.

Here’s the thing about representation: It matters. It always matters. No, I’m not talking tokenism, I’m talking representation. It’s hard to aspire when you’ve never been shown what you can truly achieve. It’s a lesson we must continually apply for women, POC, LGBTQ people, immigrants, people with disabilities, and any other marginalized group. We continue to be the other, while the straight white male continues to be the default norm.

And, believe me, everyone shoved into that “other” category notices. When I was little, I used to watch the evening news on TV with my parents every night. Yet, I never dreamed I could possibly do that as a profession until I saw Connie Chung co-anchor the “CBS Sunday Evening News.” Granted, I have no desire to be a TV news anchor. But I do appreciate the option. Happy weekend, all.

p.s. I would also like respect for being a mad Constance Wu stan from the start.

p.p.s. You remember I told you she was just in a lesbian movie, too, right? Right.


Osiris said...

I had no idea you were Asian I always assumed you were white. Is that awful ?

Anonymous said...

“It’s hard to aspire when you’ve never been shown what you can truly achieve”, I love this so much, well said. And I saw the movie last weekend too and absolutely loved it for so many reasons that I’ll never be able to express as eloquently as you:)

Carmen SanDiego said...

I’ve been looking forward to this post. I loved the movie and I’m so glad you did too. And you’re absolutely right as a non-mahjong player I understood the scene.
Can’t wait for the sequel!

Carmen SanDiego said...

Sarah Warn was right, representation matters

Karen said...

Who is Sarah Warn ?