Alright, let's just dive right in to the trailer for the adaptation of Kevin Kwan's Crazy Rich Asians:
So this looks… good, right? You've got a pretty great cast here, including Constance Wu, Michelle Yeoh, Gemma Chan, Henry Golding, Ken Jeong, and Awkwafina, all bouncing off one another with various levels of comic charm and vitriolic ire. Furthermore, the production design and costuming looks absolutely gorgeous, making this an escapist fantasy that caters to Asian-American audiences in a way that no film in recent memory has really done.
However, having read Kevin Kwan's novel, I have some reservations about how exactly Crazy Rich Asians will play out on the big screen. You know how Ready Player One fetishizes '80s geek ephemera at the expense of examining how escaping into that fantasy world has deleterious effects on the real world and the impoverished people who reside there? Well, Crazy Rich Asians does much the same thing except with designer clothing and palatial estates, paying lip service to the plights of the disadvantaged and condemning the toxically superior attitudes of the insularly wealthy without having the guts to condemn the expensive Stuff along with them. It's an off-putting implication to the work that seems like it might only be exacerbated by making all the expensive tokens viscerally present, especially with the pop opera sensibilities of director Jon M. Chu (Jem and the Holograms, G.I. Joe: Retaliation).
Mark me down as cautiously optimistic, though, as I have enough faith in this cast to deliver something positive for East Asian and Asian-American audiences, regardless of subtextual messiness. Sound off in the comments about how you think this will turn out, and we'll keep you updated until Crazy Rich Asians comes out on August 17, 2018.