Always be my Maybe is laugh-out-loud funny at times and will make you cry at others. A very welcome entry to Netflix’s growing Romantic Comedy library.
When news of Always be my Maybe hit the internet, there was strong support for the film. The trailer was released after the success of To all the Boys I’ve Loved Before and support for Asian American Rom Coms was at an all time high.
With Always hitting Netflix this weekend, fans flocked to the movie and thus far people are in love with the film. It has almost everything you could ask for in a Rom Com and then some. There are hilarious moments, painful moments, awkward moments, and steamy moments. The casting is amazing from the stars to the minor roles and the story keeps you on your toes all the way to the end.
Always be my Maybe follows the lives of Sasha Tran (Ali Wong) and Marcus Kim (Randall Park). They grew up as neighbors and best friends but grew apart after an awkward encounter when they were teenagers.
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Now adults, Sasha is wealthy and famous while Marcus has never left home and has never tried to. They run into each other thanks to a setup by a mutual childhood friend Veronica (Michelle Buteau) who is now Sasha’s assistant. They have not been keeping in touch and this encounter brings back a lot of old memories.
From there we follow how things develop and unlike many movies from the genre, the developments are in no way a clear transition towards happiness together.
Not being from the Asian American community, all of the details that point to the amazing cultural sensitivity and representation were not immediately clear to me. I do encourage anyone who wants a better understanding to seek out reviews from Asian American writers who can do a better job of pointing out those details.
With that said, food is at the core of the movie and Always be my Maybe does a great job of letting you see the importance of food in Asian culture without it feeling forced. From the arguments about what is and what isn’t authentic to the time Sasha spent learning how to make soup with Marcus’ mom. Again, from an outside perspective this is subtle but for those within the culture these details were very important.
I really can’t say enough about the cast of the movie but it was great to see so many familiar faces throughout. Seeing Ali and Randall together was always going to be a recipe for success but then surrounding them with so many great actors and actresses only takes the movie to a much higher level.
James Saito (Altered Carbon) was great as Randall’s dad and Vivian Bang was great as his girlfriend Jenny but my favorite side character was played by Karan Soni (Deadpool). Karan plays another childhood friend named Tony who is in a band with Marcus. His lines and moments were scene-stealers for me much like his lines in Deadpool.
However, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Keanu Reeves. Fresh off of the incredible third entry in the John Wick series, Keanu shows up for a comedic turn in Always be my Maybe. He’s actually playing himself (if he were an asshole) and from the moment he appears on the screen it’s pure comedy.
This scene has been posted online by the official Netflix account and at the time of this post already has 1 million views and 64 thousand likes. His magical role also inspired the song that plays during the end credits. Normally, at the end of movies, Netflix has a preview for the next movie pop up but because of this song they let the credits roll. It’s definitely worth it to listen through.
While Always be my Maybe is not the constant laugh-fest that I was expecting going in, it has plenty of laugh-out-loud moments. It’s actually a more serious entry in the genre and I actually appreciated this about the movie. Even the overtly comedic girlfriend/boyfriends that show up add something to the film. I was surprised by how heavy it got by the end but it is a very real and relatable movie for a lot of people. Always be my Maybe is worth a watch for all of these reasons.
You can watch Always be my Maybe now on Netflix.