Director: Jon M. Chu

Starring: Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Michelle Yeoh

Year: 2018

Crazy Rich Asians is about as good as My Best Friend’s Wedding, and that’s not a compliment.  Wait, I take that back; at least My Best Friend’s Wedding was made in the 90s when we didn’t know any better, while Crazy Rich Asians was out in theatres this year, when we really ought to have learned.  Rom/coms of this sort are stupid by definition, and it takes real talent to elevate them out of the syrup onto something somewhat stable.  It’s hard, barely anyone can did it, and just because this film is a step in the right direction for the inclusion of other races in the Hollywood mainstream, that doesn’t mean that anyone on board was prepared to fix a broken genre.  In fact, this story is dumber than most that we’ve been subjected to over the last few decades, with less humor, worse acting, and almost no reason to watch.

Rachel and Nick have been dating for some time in New York City, both are children of Chinese parents, things are going really well, and they’re already thinking about next steps.  For Nick, that means introducing Rachel to his family at a big wedding coming up in Singapore.  That’s a lot of pressure, because he’s not just anyone, he’s Nick Young the heir to the Young Empire, and his family is richer than rich, super rich; crazy rich.  Rachel will have to impress Nick’s mother, who wants her boy to move home and take over the family business, something he has no interest in doing.  Cultures will clash and lessons will be learned, but not before our heroes’ hearts and nerves will by tested and perhaps found much too weak.

John Chu is a director of terrible movies, and he doesn’t change his MO this year: was anyone ever confident that he could?  What made anyone think that the guy behind some of the worst films of the last 10 years could make an original, watchable rom/com?  Seriously; have critics lost their minds?  This movie is a poorer version of too many we’ve seen too often, without an original bone in its body other than its racial vantage point.  This is a movie that was made proudly because it was made Asian, and for that it will be applauded and rightly so.  But that fact has nothing to do with the quality of its acting or of its story, which were both terrible.  The ending was simply awful, the middle was dreadfully boring, and the beginning was a set up we’ve watched a million times. Other than Awkwafina, who I thought was funny, and the attempt to show audiences that it’s OK to cast Asian leads, which is laudable, everything else about this film was abysmal and not worth a second of our time.

My rating: ☆ ☆



By ochippie

Writer, Critic, Dad Columbus, Ohio, USA Denver Broncos, St. Louis Cardinals Colorado Avalanche, Duke Blue Devils