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  • Crazy Rich Asians

    Anyone seen Crazy Rich Asians yet? Was thinking of seeing it this weekend. The IMBD user reviews were really mixed, some loving it, some talking about how superficial these people are with their material loves and such. I'd wonder if it's a blatant (or subtle?) criticism of materialism that the user reviews somehow didn't understand.

  • #2
    Originally posted by DrJay View Post
    Anyone seen Crazy Rich Asians yet? Was thinking of seeing it this weekend. The IMBD user reviews were really mixed, some loving it, some talking about how superficial these people are with their material loves and such. I'd wonder if it's a blatant (or subtle?) criticism of materialism that the user reviews somehow didn't understand.
    This movie production has been so fraught with 'racist' overtones, it's wisest to say nothing about it. On one (good) hand, it gives 'Asians' cultural centrality, on the other (bad) hand, it's Hollywood's take, filled with stereotypes. I have one Asian colleague who hates the book because it pits Asians against each other, and presents their 'otherness', but I have two others who loved it because it shows Asians as just 'real' people with 'real' problems - moreso than other films featuring Asians.

    It's a similar problem to the Black Panther issue. Is it better to portray an all-black (superior) culture, as a unique 'other' sociological phenomenon, or is there a danger in that?

    I have no idea, but suspect that it will be a welcome addition to the cinematic and cultural landscapes, while simultaneously 'telling' some people 'everything they need to know about Asians', obviously a dangerous potentiality.
    Last edited by Atticus; 08-24-2018, 02:51 PM.

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    • #3
      your track & field connection to the movie: across the street from the T&FN offices is a restaurant called Chef Chu where I've eaten a bazillion meals in the last 40 years (and had many an office party there).

      The owner is the father of the director, John M. Chu.

      (and my niece went to a prom with him)

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      • #4
        I have seen it (mainly because romantic comedies is my wifes absolute go to category). I don't remotely try to analyze this stuff like Atticus does. The struggle in the movie is that of the very very rich versus the rest of the world, and to a lesser extent some degree of "cultural purity". For me it was mostly light hearted and reasonably enjoyable.

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        • #5
          "it gives 'Asians' cultural centrality, on the other (bad) hand, it's Hollywood's take, filled with stereotypes. I have one Asian colleague who hates the book because it pits Asians against each other, and presents their 'otherness',"
          I am pretty sure the characters are all Chinese ethnically. Asia is also made up of Indians, Vietnamese, Thais, Laotians, Indonesians, Malays, Burmese, yada , yada. The use of the word Asian is a false flag. It's like calling "La Dolce Vita" "Crazy rich Europeans."

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          • #6
            I expect the remake of La Dolce Vita is in development, now to be titled as you noted.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by jeremyp View Post
              Asia is also made up of Indians, Vietnamese, Thais, Laotians, Indonesians, Malays, Burmese, yada , yada. The use of the word Asian is a false flag. It's like calling "La Dolce Vita" "Crazy rich Europeans."
              That's exactly what I was thinking. Asia extends all the way to the Middle East, so the word "Asian" doesn't describe any specific racial or ethnic group. I work with a Malaysian and a Korean who are comfortable with the word "Oriental", but if that word has gone out of style, a la "Colored", perhaps we should use the term East Asian to describe people from that part of the world.

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              • #8
                On that note about terms for people's ethnicity, a little note about my friend Robin Cummings. Robin was a cardio-thoracic resident at Duke when I was resident in orthopaedics there, and became a top notch cardiac surgeon near Pinehurst until a health problem sidelined and he moved into administration.

                About 4 years ago, Robin was named the President of UNC Pembroke, which is in Pembroke/Lumberton, NC. Robin by ethnicity is a Lumbee Indian, which is a tribe based around Pembroke/Lumberton. After he was named President I called to congratulate him and during the conversation I asked him about UNC Pembroke and what % of the student body was Lumbees. He said, "We're about 40% Indians, about 25% white, about 20% blacks, ... " or #s to that effect.

                I was a little surprised he used Indians, so I asked him why not Native Americans. He said, "We hate that term. You're a Native American - you were born here. Most of us prefer Indians despite what the PC folks foist upon us."

                I realize that's not an opinion shared by all, but he's a prominent Indian/Native American voice as the President of a college that caters largely to that ethnicity. Wonder what lonewolf has to say on this.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by bambam1729 View Post
                  I was a little surprised he used Indians, so I asked him why not Native Americans. He said, "We hate that term. You're a Native American - you were born here. Most of us prefer Indians despite what the PC folks foist upon us."

                  I realize that's not an opinion shared by all, but he's a prominent Indian/Native American voice as the President of a college that caters largely to that ethnicity. Wonder what lonewolf has to say on this.
                  I think the term Native American makes no sense if you look at how we refer to indigenous people in other countries. The indigenous people shouldn't have a modifier, it's the non-indigenous people should get the modifier. We wouldn't refer to Roger Bannister as a Native Englishman, we'd call him an Englishman. Therefore we shouldn't refer to Jim Thorpe as a Native American and Bob Mathias as an American, we should refer to Jim Thorpe as an American and Bob Mathias as a European-American. Native American is a Eurocentric term. After all, people of African or Asian descent are commonly referred to as African-Americans and Asian-Americans respectively.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jeremyp View Post
                    "it gives 'Asians' cultural centrality, on the other (bad) hand, it's Hollywood's take, filled with stereotypes. I have one Asian colleague who hates the book because it pits Asians against each other, and presents their 'otherness',"
                    I am pretty sure the characters are all Chinese ethnically. Asia is also made up of Indians, Vietnamese, Thais, Laotians, Indonesians, Malays, Burmese, yada , yada. The use of the word Asian is a false flag. It's like calling "La Dolce Vita" "Crazy rich Europeans."
                    Here in the UK, 'Asian' tends to be used for those who have ancestry from the Indian sub-continent so the title evokes a different group of people than it would for Americans. Those with Chinese ancestry, tend to just be described as Chinese while there are very few of Japanese or Korean descent.

                    I agree that East Asian seems best for the latter group while South Asian is the better name for the former (and does get used a lot by the BBC, quality press etc). This also fits in well with the long-established use of South-East Asia for the area including Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia etc.
                    Last edited by Trickstat; 08-26-2018, 02:45 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Trickstat View Post
                      I agree that East Asian seems best for the latter group while South Asian is the better name for the former (and does get used a lot by the BBC, quality press etc). This also fits in well with the long-established use of South-East Asia for the area including Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia etc.
                      When I'm talking among friends, I use the terms Yellow (East Asian), Brown (South-Central Asian), as well as Red (American), White (European) and Black (sub-Sahara African). As long as you're not offending anyone, it makes a lot more sense to use a one-syllable term than a seven or eight-syllable one IMO.
                      Last edited by jazzcyclist; 08-26-2018, 03:00 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Not getting in to any deep discussion here. I might be in the minority (no pun intended) but the movie is pretty much not worth seeing, sorry!

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                        • #13
                          Give Yellowstone a chance.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by lonewolf View Post
                            Give Yellowstone a chance.
                            I'd be curious about what you'd think of "The Son" if you can watch it. Half of it is about the Patriarch's kidnapping and assimilation into a Choctaw community. It was on AMC, but I saw it through Netflix DVD.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by jeremyp View Post
                              "it gives 'Asians' cultural centrality, on the other (bad) hand, it's Hollywood's take, filled with stereotypes. I have one Asian colleague who hates the book because it pits Asians against each other, and presents their 'otherness',"
                              I am pretty sure the characters are all Chinese ethnically. Asia is also made up of Indians, Vietnamese, Thais, Laotians, Indonesians, Malays, Burmese, yada , yada. The use of the word Asian is a false flag. It's like calling "La Dolce Vita" "Crazy rich Europeans."
                              Singapore itself is a multi-ethnic society, and the movie is not received well by its Malay and Indian population. Here is a review by a Chinese Singaporean which touches on that issue.

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