Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE

Living in Asia, geographically specific in the Philippines is such an amazing experience of my life. I grew up to a family with diverse background and among the family members, am the only one who is keen observer. We might not be in a poor family, but I remember how my father’s influence gives a tremendous impact as I grew up. My Mom used to welcome my father’s visitors and friends from different places, unknown to me. She said they are the people from this and that of elite background. For me, it became a mystery – a world I want to explore someday.

Years had passed, I now slowly entering the gates of this world, partly ala Oliver Tien.



Crazy Rich Asians (CRA) is a story of different kinds of love in Asia. Though it was written by a Singaporean-American Kevin Kwan, his trilogy books are somehow his family’s autobiography.

Many opinions came out on how they felt about the movie – some find it relatable, some find it irritable, and some doesn’t understand it at all. But as a huge fan (and a good reader of Asian stories) of the trilogy book and the movie (and soon the sequel!), here are the types of love that you will find at CRA


1. Love for the family

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
This kind of love is so strong in the entire movie. You will understand how Eleanor Young will do anything for the sake of her son’s (Nicholas Young) welfare and future. In the book you will also understand how the old matriarch Su Yi protects her family’s name and eventually, she was treated like royalty by all the people surrounds her. You will also discover how overly protective most Asians parents are, it isn’t for the reason of “just saving face” but because there is an “unspoken reasons” many Asians would understand. In Asian family, the elders’ decision are well-respected for the sake of the whole family.



2. A Romeo-and-Juliet kind of love (sans poison)

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
The love story between and ABC (American-born Chinese) Rachel Chu and Nicholas Young is something that I wouldn’t get tired hearing over and over. In spite of many odds, Nick Young choses his love for Rachel even that means being disinherited by his Ah Ma. His love is so genuine that is more than his family’s portfolio (eventually his as well) but ready to give up. And Rachel, an ABC with a genuine heart (and knows how to play mah-jong, btw) choses to leave Nick for the sake of his family and his future. This love story is so sweet and I couldn’t helped wiping off my tears.

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE

And of course that epic $40 Million dollar wedding of the century (as CRA said), bringing the forest inside the church and seeing the bride walking down aisle of water and hand-held fireflies, their rendition of ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love’ is a reminder to myself that ‘am a woman who also believes in-love’. I might have a modern take on love, but the old tradition of love is still in me.

In Asia, weddings are not just a party for two couple’s in-love. It is a celebration of the union of families, so it is truly a big deal and no judgement if they want to make it an so extra because its for the family (and the future, of course).




3. Motherly-kind of love

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
We can’t blame our Mothers if they are overly protective to their cubs, IMHO we should be feel grateful. If your Mom is like a lioness, she have her own reason why. But every lioness have a soft spots in their hearts. As a new comer in the family, never stops searching for that soft spots. Parenting is a tough job, with no retirement.


4. Love for extended family – friends

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
In the book, you will see how friends of Nicholas Young and Rachel Chu helped each other. These childhood friends are so precious and is part of the family. And of course, if you have friends like the couple Khoo and Peik Lin both in your pockets then you are living your life more colourfully. Surely, you’ll be the one of the hottest toast of the town.


5. Love for your motherland

The story was set in Singapore and some parts of Malaysia where Nicholas Young’s family originated, and it was an amazing treat making this book comes into life as a movie. Who wouldn’t admire the Singapore’s many spectacular places – even the Changi Airport looks like a separate city! Thanks for having Singapore Tourism Board for supporting the low-budgeted film which are now gained a grossed of $130 Million and still on the top chart. In the book, it teaches us to give be patriotic to our motherland and learn to give back in whatever ways we can.
At least now because of the movie, many in the west already knows that Singapore is not part of China.



6. Love for the money

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
Let’s admit it – with substantial wealth, you can easily do everything even the crazy ones. However, many hardworking and blessed HNWIs’ (high net worth individuals) chose to play their wealth with responsibility. One of my friend’s father who owns a yatcht now parked at Manila Bay once told us, “What’s the use of your wealth, if you wouldn’t enjoy it. After all, when you are gone, you won’t carry it with you in the afterlife.”

He worked hard for it and he got to enjoy it as well. Thus, I can’t blame if Eddie Cheng (cousin of Nicholas Young) acts like his first love is money. Maintaining a lavish lifestyle and appearance in a very judgemental society takes a lot of work.

But sometimes, even money can’t buy you genuine influence and Kitty Pong learned that lesson.


7. Love for the family's culture and traditions.

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
Many of us in Asia are still keen on keeping the family’s culture and tradition. These cultures and traditions are the means that keep us grounded, bounded, and humble. And even sans monetary wealth, many Asians are very rich in maintaining this old ways, the only treasures that we can only pass on to our next generation. Do you all sit down and make dumplings using the decade old family recipe?


8. Self-love

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
It is not a selfish act to love ourselves first. Sometimes, self-love is the great way for us to give and share love to others. But never forget to spare love for yourself once you give some to others. Just like Astrid Leong, giving love to your partner and accepting his flaws are given however, if that causes you to forget who you are and your self-worth, then that isn’t love at all. Partnership means working together, and respecting each other and it isn’t an excuse that someone ‘can provide much bigger’ because in partnership, you two are equal.

And when things go wrong and you think can’t save it anymore, then leave before it fully destroys you as a person.

****

The whole movie and the book teaches us about women empowerment – women can stand and fight on what they believe and love most. Even Kitty Pong, a striving actress did what she have to do to rise up and achieve her ambition, even that means marrying Bernard Tai, and eventually became Mrs. Jack Bing. There are also women like Rachel’s Mom who chose to escape, and moved to America for the sake of their safety from his abusive husband. Bullying is also unacceptable and you have to defend yourself on your own without losing yourself, and have a good fight just like what Rachel did.

There are also some part of the movie that might raise your brows such us the pivotal mahjong scene. This is something that doesn’t need a movie explanation, but becomes very symbolic – fighting who will win in the table having Nicholas’ future as the winning prize. You’ve better watch the movie, and feel the heat in order for you to understand what I mean.

Trust me, this mahjong showdown made me in tears, good thing my Ah Moh boyfriend wasn’t with me.

Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE

Crazy Rich Asians is a family-friendly movie and I recommend you to bring along your own family when you watch this, even bring along your extended families if you can. And I hope that this movie would make you realized more the value of family, and hopefully discover your own family history, culture and old traditions.


And after watching the movie, I recommend that you read the trilogy books: Crazy Rich Asians, China Rich Girlfriend, and Rich Peoples Problem. Trust me, it is a more exciting experience.
Hang-on for the upcoming sequel – I heard it is already in the works, the Shanghai Rich Girlfriend.


Review: Crazy Rich Asians Movie + Book + Story about LOVE
Never rely one free tickets. And I chose to support this remarkable movie.


Have you watched CRA? Do you find it YAY or NAY? I would love to read your comments below!


xoxo, Blair




68 LOVES AND COMMENTS:

  1. I’m so happy I read this! I have been off and on about wanting to see it, but you just definitely swayed me!

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    1. Oh Shannon you might enjoy this movie. Also a helpful guide especially if you are planning to visit Asia (especially Singapore) in the future. Watch the movie first, then the books :D

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  2. I haven't read the book or seen the movie, but I want to do both! I think I want to read the book first and then see the movie after.

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    1. There are few changes and pivotal moments they did in the movie that is not in the book. Either way, they are both fantastic.

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  3. This looks like an amazing movie! I think Western culture doesn't take marriage seriously enough, and honestly, I've decided to be 'single for life' at this point because of past experiences. But, I'm raising my sons like the lioness, and am about to welcome my first daughter-in-law into our family!

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    1. Oh you are very protective to your family and that's okay.
      In Asia, many countries values marriages and family (even though there is a divorce, but doesn't jump too quick on that idea). Parents holds a huge part between the couple, they keep themselves grounded including the grandchildren.

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  4. I have never head of this movie before, nor have I heard of the books. I will definitely look into it though. I enjoy reading and watching movies about other cultures.

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    1. Oh add this to your next weekend movie. It will be a helpful guide to get to know Singaporeans, and Chinese cultures

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  5. I'll have to watch the movie when it comes out on DVD. It sounds like one I'd enjoy. I couldn't really get into the book though.

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  6. Actually I haven't watched any. But they look good. I might download and watch them later.

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  7. It's great to have such a diverse background like you! I haven't seen so many Asian movies, but this one looks like one I should really check out. I love the way you presented different kinds of love. Can't wait to watch this movie! :)

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  8. I can't wait to go see this movie. Hopefully in a few days. I heard it was good.

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    1. It was. From a very low budgeted movie, now gaining more than $130Million!

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  9. Looks like such a fun movie. Thank you for sharing this perspective. You have really generated a renewed interest in seeing the movie

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  10. Seems like a movie I might enjoy. I didn't know there was a book. And I love visiting other Asian countries too. Thanks for putting this out there. :)

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    1. I read the trilogy books for I think for than 5 times now and still can't get over it.

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  11. I honestly have not watched this movie and you have given me a glimpse of what I expect. TY

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    1. Better watch it and laugh (or in my case I cried a bit!).

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  12. Thank you for sharing! We've heard a lot of good things bout this move and have been wanting to watch it just haven't made time. After reading this I think ill be making time to watch it this weekend.

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  13. Aw, that sounds really good! I haven't seen it yet but I do know a couple of the actors and love them! I'll have to check this one out!!

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  14. My friend was reading this book and I always used to see it in her bag. I did peep through and read the summary. Did seem intriguing. Movie ..I'm waiting to watch!

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  15. Thanks for the review. I have yet to see Crazy Rich Asians - but I definitely love your analysis.

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  16. I have not heard of this of movie, I like that this movie teaches about women empowerment. It definitely sounds like a movie I want to see. I will also have to read the book.

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    1. Asian Moms are always misunderstood. This movie helps to understand why.

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  17. I am eagerly waiting to watch this movie. My friend already watched and he said its an worth to watch

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    1. This morning I woke up and learned that Crazy Rich Asians is the highest grossing movie of the decade earning $213million worldwide!

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  18. I thought the trailer looked good but never knew it was based on a series. You say its autobiographical? That makes it more interesting since the trailer makes it seem fairly over the top.

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    1. Yes it was an autobiography, some of the storylines are based on the true story of the author's family.

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  19. We went to this movie as a family with adult children and it was amazing. It was a great story that also allowed sharing of culural information.

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    1. Oh I am glad that you enjoyed the movie! I wish many movies like this well follow :D

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  20. I looks like it'll be a tear jerker with the mix of good and bad love. I hope to see it in the theater.

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  21. I need to read the book, then see the movie! I heard an interview on NPR about it and it sounds GREAT!!!

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    1. You will enjoy it and learn a lot about Chinese Family.

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  22. I have seen a lot about this movie. It sounds like it will be really good!

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  23. Thank you for the review. I have seen this advertised but wanted a better idea of the story!

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    1. Try to watch it and maybe you'll like the storyline :D

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  24. What a wonderful post! A lot of my friends have seen this and they loved! I can't wait to get a chance to watch. Thanks for sharing! :)

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  25. I have heard the news about this movie but have yet to watch it myself. Hopefully soon!

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    1. You should not miss it. It is the highest earning movie of the decade!

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  26. Thanks for taking the time to do the review. Glad to know there is also a book.

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    1. Yeah, its nice to read the book as well because not all in the book are included in the movie.

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  27. I might have to watch the movie now. I hear so many things about the books and the movie but was never really sold on it. Great post!

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  28. I totally agree that Asian, especially the Chinese families, are very filial. However, when choosing the person to marry, it's tradition. Although the modern families have already veered away from that, allowing their children to "fall in love", but most of the time, the parents choose the mate in order to preserve the wealth. Well, that's what happens in China. In the PHilippines, it's not so much already.

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    1. Preserving the wealth and family tradition and culture. We can't blame them because of many hardship and time they spend in order to build what they have now, and being enjoyed by their new generation.

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  29. We have not watched television in ages and I could not recognize the names of those in my country...not to mention those in a different country.

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    1. This is in movie theater and hope you can watch it :D

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  30. Oh my gosh Blair, you have a signed copy of the book. Wow!

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    1. Yes! Kevin Kwan visited Manila for his book signing twice, and I attended both! He remembers me :D

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  31. I think it's a nice movie and I'm Asian so I can totally relate to this. I hope I can watch it soon.

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    1. Yeah it is phenomenal! Now it is available in Mandarin :D

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  32. Good review, I like the movie so much.

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  33. i honestly didn't watch the movie because i kinda knew what would go on. after reading your post i can say my expectations were right haha. but these points are all important, like some of them id even go for it

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  34. let love lead indeed

    Some Asian cultures are beautiful and institutionalized and i think this play a role in their difference in some modern trends and this is highly remarkable.

    I need to get this movie and thanks for sharing Blair

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