Impressions about Singapore from movie may stick

I agree with the views of Mr Michael Lum and Mr Manoraj Rajathurai on the movie Crazy Rich Asians (Wrong to support work of person who broke the law, and Movie accentuates social divide, stereotypes; both on Aug 29).

The film commission's support of the movie not only sends a signal about condoning wrong moral values, but it will also set a precedent.

Who is to say there will not be more like author Kevin Kwan in the future, who may have great achievements but are short of values?

It may appear to be a trivial matter to have our societal values disparaged in a movie that is internationally well received.

But the impression unwittingly created in the minds of these moviegoers will be indelible as it is not often that movies based in Singapore become famous.

Their first impressions may thus stick.

Social divide is already an issue in Singapore, though it is not as wide as in other major cities due to government intervention. This movie negates the good work done.

However, some may say that the movie, or for that matter any movie, would not make a mark without exaggerating a certain theme. In this case, it is about how rich Asians flaunt their wealth and are blind to their waywardness.

This may not have been a great fault, if not for the fact that Mr Kwan, whose book the movie is based on, had defaulted on his national service obligations.

Phillip Tan Fong Lip

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 31, 2018, with the headline 'Impressions about S'pore from movie may stick'. Print Edition | Subscribe