Always Be My Maybe (2019)

Always Be My Maybe
Director: Nahnatchka Khan
Writer: Ali Wong, Randall Park, Michael Golamco
Cast: Ali Wong, Randall Park, James Saito, Michelle Buteau, Vivian Bang, Keanu Reeves, Susan Park, Daniel Dae Kim, Karan Soni, Charlyne Yi, Lyrics Born, Casey Wilson
Seen on: 1.6.2019

Plot:
When Sasha (Ali Wong) and Marcus (Randall Park) were kids, they were neighbors and best friends. It seemed like fate that they should fall in love as well, but they had a falling out instead and haven’t spoken in 15 years. After becoming a celebrity chef, Sasha has returns to San Francisco to open a new restaurant, after agreeing on a break from her fiancé Brandon (Daniel Dae Kim) – and runs into Marcus who seems not to have changed at all. The two carefully reconnect and have to ask themselves whether old wounds or old attractions still have a hold on the present.

Always Be My Maybe is sweet and fun, but I didn’t connect emotionally to it that much. Still, it’s very watchable.

The film poster showing Marcus (Randall Park) and Sasha (Ali Wong) standing with some distance between them, but their hands casually reaching for each other.

I heard a lot of enthusiasm about the film before seeing it and maybe my expectations were therefore a little too high for the film to fulfill them. What I can say is that it’s great that we got a RomCom with two Asian-American leads – it feels like the first time a mainstream film actually does that.

Park and Wong were certainly charming leads. I have to admit that I had my doubts about Wong after quitting one of her comedy specials when she made a rape joke, but she acquits herself well here. There are still a few jokes overall that are simply terrible, but there are also quite a few good ones.

Marcus (Randall Park) and Sasha (Ali Wong) walking down a street, deep in discussion.

That being said, Keanu Reeves’ supporting role as himself kind of stole the film from under their noses. It was hilarious and awesome and I can understand why they focused on it, but it just took a little too much away from Sasha and Marcus. (I also really enjoyed James Saito as Marcus’ dad, even though his role was very small.)

In the end, the film is nice, but not more than nice. It is entertaining, has nice costumes and cinematography, and as I said there are very funny moments. But it lacked an emotional connection for me.

Sasha (Ali Wong) on a date with Keanu Reeves (Keanu Reeves).

Summarizing: watchable and fun, but not great.

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