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Crazy Rich Asians – Film review

“It’s films like this that motivates aspiring Asian filmmakers to get more involved in the film industry"...

2018 has been known as the year of diversity in regards to Hollywood films. With the success of titles such as Love Simon, Black Panther, and Wonder Woman, receiving rave reviews on sites such as Rotten Tomatoes and earning millions in the box office. It’s clear that Hollywood is now slowly transitioning to diverse storytelling using diverse cast and crew. So when the trailer for Crazy Rich Asians was shown in cinemas, I knew this was something I would be interested to watch as it’s a typical rom-com… but with Asian characters.

Crazy Rich Asians is a film adaptation of the novel written by Kevin Kwan, directed by Jon Chu, who also directed G.I. Joe: Retaliation and Now You See Me 2. The film is centred around Rachel Chu who goes to Singapore to meet Nicholas Young’s family who are extremely wealthy and well-known in the country. From there, Rachel needs to try to impress his mother who thinks she isn’t worthy of being part of the family, as well as trying to understand or get used to Nicholas’ celebrity status.

As an Asian myself, I found this film very relatable in some degree as well as entertaining. I rarely see films and shows made in Hollywood that depict the Asian lifestyle in an accurate way as most of the time, the Asian characters are usually the sidekick or martial arts experts. The story and how the film is put together was able to depict an accurate picture of the contrast between two Asian lifestyles – the immigrant and the social elite.

Aside from the story, the use of both English and Cantonese in the dialogue makes the characters and the story more authentic. An example is when the grandmother is the only character that only speaks Cantonese, no English. Meanwhile, we see Rachel attempting to speak the language despite her being born and raised in America.

Some say that having a whole group of characters who are filthy rich and snobby makes the film unrelatable, but it’s the fantasy of being extremely rich in an Asian country that also appeals to audiences.

Also, according to Junkee, having such extremely rich characters helps fulfil the fantasy of “being white”, especially for those who were born and raised in a third world country.

Following Rachel’s journey through this trip, audiences are able to relate to her more since they know what it’s like to be questioned by Asians who have been fully immersed in Asian cultures, in contrast to the first world lifestyle they’ve been raised in.

I asked a few of my classmates who are from an Asian descent if they’ve watched it or why they want to watch it and the common answer that I’ve received is that they want to support Asian characters and the community.

Alice Dong, a third-year communications student, said “It’s films like this that motivates aspiring Asian filmmakers to get more involved in the film industry, proving if films like this make big in the box office, there is a chance for more Asian representation on the big screen.”

Crazy Rich Asians may not be the first film to show authentic Asian representation but the story and characters in the film depict an accurate picture of the contrasting lifestyles of the different Asian lifestyles.  A good teen/young adult film and well worth watching. Currently showing in cinemas across Sydney.

 

Author: Erielle Sudario

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Looking to the stars

On May 23, 2018, hundreds of people gathered at three of Western Sydney University’s campuses to help break the world record for the most amount of ...

On May 23, 2018, hundreds of people gathered at three of Western Sydney University’s campuses to help break the world record for the most amount of people stargazing at the same time.

Organised by the ABC in partnership with the Australian National University, the event featured 285 star parties across Australia and saw an estimated 40,000 people across Australia simultaneously observe the moon through a telescope for 10 minutes.

All up, 14 universities, more than 100 schools, and eight observatories took part in the event, including WSU’s Penrith observatory.

WSU’s participants varied from university students, staff, families with kids, and amateur astronomers, who came to the observatory to take part in the event.

“I find it cool that more people are getting into astronomy. It’s a really interesting thing to learn about,” said David Butler, a WSU Bachelor of International Studies who is studying astrology as an elective.

People who came to the event either brought their own telescopes or bought one in the venue provided. Members of the Western Sydney Amateur Astronomy Group, a private club that’s partnered with the university, also came to the event and brought their own personal telescopes for the kids to view the moon with. The telescopes show high-depth images of the moon and possibly the viewable planets around us.

“Events like this help bring the community together, it’s fantastic,” said David. “There are so many unknowns and a lot of things we still don’t know about our universe.”

The event concluded with everyone gathered around in front of the observatory for a group photo to commemorate the event.

“I hope we can get more people into astronomy and into stargazing on a daily basis,” said Peter Nosworthy, the secretary of the Western Sydney Amateur Astronomy Group.

But no astronomy event is over without asking the final question – IS THE EARTH FLAT?

“The way the stars move prove to me that the earth is not flat. I can’t prove that the Earth is flat as all the proofs seem illogical,” said Peter.

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New international student? Try the Bondi to Coogee coastal walk

Ever gone to the beach and thought to yourself  “Where would I go if I kept following the shoreline?” Or maybe you’ve visited Bondi and...

Ever gone to the beach and thought to yourself  “Where would I go if I kept following the shoreline?”
Or maybe you’ve visited Bondi and wondered what other areas you could explore in Sydney.

For those interested, the coastal walk starting from Coogee Beach to the famous Bondi Beach (or vice versa) allows you to not only to see other landmarks here in Sydney, but also lets you  explore it all on your own.

Due to a landslide, this area is closed off and still going through re-construction. This is also the halfway point of our walk

Be aware though, that once you start this journey, there is no going back – unless you know the city bus routes. It is however, worth it … just a 50 minute treck between beach to beach, point A to point B. You will be able to see wonderful cliffside views of the ocean, waves crashing through the rocky walls of the country, and just see there is more to Sydney beaches than just Bondi.

Doggies aren’t allowed to be in this area of Clovelly beach

One of the interesting spots to see during this walk is the waiting point for dogs  near Clovelly Bay as the area doesn’t permit pets to enter. All the dogs that can’t  come with their owner just know this is the spot they need to stay in until their masters’ return.

The best time to go is during the early hours of the day when it’s not too hot and you’d get to feel the cool ocean breeze.

If you live in the western suburbs and want to use public transport to get there, take the train the Central, then a connecting train to Bondi Junction, and at Bondi Junction hop on to the 380 bus, which takes you directly to the beach.

Author: Erielle Sudario