When my book club read Crazy Rich Asians, we thought it was interesting, but didn’t put it on our ‘Top 20 Best Books List.’ In our experience, movies are typically not better than the book, but after seeing the trailer for this movie, it looked like a winner, so I invited my book club girls, Carolyn, Kristi, and Tami, and they agreed to join me. Carolyn commented, “Finally, the summer romantic comedy I’ve been waiting for.” It is interesting to note that this was the first acting role for Henry Golding, who plays leading man Nick, as he was a travel show host. He was resistant at first, but Director John Chu was persuasive and Golding was perfect for the role of “the Prince Harry of Asia.” Awkwafina and the actors that play her family are quirky and loveable as supportive friends to leading lady Rachel (played by Constance Wu). We all felt that the casting was perfect.
You get the idea of the family’s vast wealth when Nick’s mom (Michelle Yeoh) buys a London hotel on the spot, after she is treated rudely. Rachel is an NYU economics professor and has been dating Nick for a year before she travels with him to Singapore for a wedding, knowing nothing about his family. She learns quickly in this romantic comedy that highlights the push and pull between love and family, and prejudice at every turn in this ultra-wealthy society.
The movie was filmed in Singapore and Malaysia and we all felt that it was visually stunning. Prepare to be wowed during scenes throughout the $40 million wedding. The water cascading down the aisle was astonishing. Stayed tuned for one of the final scenes which involves the most romantic unromantic proposal I’ve seen.
This is the first major Hollywood film with an exclusively Asian cast movie to hit the big screen in 25 years (think back to Joy Luck Club). It will not disappoint you as it celebrates all things luxury and is filled with class conflict. Like us, you will probably come away wanting to learn the game of mahjong and try some handmade dumplings.
Turns out this is the first book in a trilogy with China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems completing the series. It’ll be interesting to see if they too become movies.
Movie times: click here
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Director: Jon M. Chu
Written By: Peter Chiarelli, Adele Lim, and Kevin Kwan
Actors: Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Michelle Yeoh, Gemma Chan, Lisa Lu, Awkafina, Harry Shum Jr., Ken Jeong
Running Time: 120 minutes