You don’t have to be crazy, rich, or Asian to enjoy the the movie Crazy Rich Asians.
It showed the world all the familiar beauties of my country- the dazzling futuristic skyline, street-stall delicacies, multicultural slangs. It even featured many local stars I grew up watching!
Romanticizing Singapore aside, this film really resonated with me on a much deeper level. I’m a Singaporean- though I’m not rich, but some would say crazy- raised with Chinese values in America. .
Since young, it was always tough navigating the intergenerational anxieties between my Eastern upbringing and Western environment. But in recent years the struggle has morphed into a different one. I no longer feel amidst an identity crisis; I am extremely thankful to have integrated values from both cultures into my life. The struggle now is juggling between traditionalism and individualism; between familial duty, filial piety and chasing my own happiness.
Just like Nick’s mother, my mother sacrificed her life, her career to keep our family together. Now, 28 years later, herself, my dad, and 2 brothers are all together in Singapore. Then there’s me- on the other side of the world fighting to attain a Green Card. There’s a part of me that feels the need to fulfill my duty as a good daughter, a good sister and move back to Singapore to build a life there. The other part of me- the current track I’m on- is telling me to chase my own happiness. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve felt guilt for putting my own selfish needs first.
All in all, I hope that Crazy Rich Asians serves as a love-letter between Asian parents and their Americanizing children.