The city state is the setting for the movie – an adaptation of a best-selling novel that explores the insatiable consumerism of new money and old-world opulence in a continent producing more billionaires than anywhere else. It premiered in Singapore on Tuesday (August 21).
The romantic comedy about an Asian-American New Yorker who goes to Singapore to meet her boyfriend’s wealthy and tradition-bound family of Chinese descent is based on the 2013 best-selling book of the same name by Kevin Kwan.
Luxury brands and fine dining serve as a backdrop for the movie, and many Singaporeans were keen to point out they were not necessary to have a good time.
There are plenty of stores selling clothes at a fraction of those sold at Chanel and Dior boutiques on Orchard Road, the main shopping belt, they say. Stalls at Maxwell Food Centre, an open-air dining spot with hawkers specialising in local dishes costing an average of S$5 (US$3.65), even boast vendors who have received a Michelin star.
Warner Bros.’ highly anticipated romantic comedy launched above expectations with a five-day tally of $34 million when it opened in 3,384 locations. Jon M. Chu’s acclaimed movie — the first studio film in over 25 years since 1993’s “Joy Luck Club” to feature a nearly all Asian-American cast — carries a modest $30 million budget.
Enthusiasm has been strong for “Crazy Rich Asians,” which arrives as Hollywood is being pressured to feature greater diversity on screen. It holds a strong 93 percent certified fresh rating on review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes, along with an A CinemaScore.