With a promising cast led by Emma Stone and Bradley Cooper, how could “Aloha” not succeed?
The romantic comedy chronicles washed-out veteran turned contractor Brian Gilcrest’s (Cooper) return to Hawaii. Amid helping billionaire Carson Welch (Bill Murray) with a satellite launch, the former soldier reconnects with ex-girlfriend Tracey (Rachel McAdams) and ultimately falls in love with the hard-charging Allison Ng (Stone).
The plot seems simple enough, but watching the film will leave you just as clueless as watching the trailer. The highly-anticipated film with starry leads and equally great supporting talent proves that a phenomenal cast can save the day….except when talking about “Aloha.”
“Aloha” lacks any of the chronological structure it so desperately needed. But hey, as a result, the audience is able to exercise its creative freedom. The viewer is able to fill in the many gaps with whatever anecdotes they want. Because that’s what every viewer looks for in a movie: to feel confused and bored and make up for it with their own imagination.
The characters also take everyone back to freshman orientation where you met a bunch of boring people and never remembered any of their names. Gilcrest could be named Royce Bobby-Bob Saffron and no one would know the difference.
Stone portrays a bi-racial character who is part Asian, part Hawaiian and part Swedish. Since Hollywood is never under fire for misrepresenting minorities, having a blonde haired, blue eyed white actress portray someone with Asian ancestry in an already 100 percent white cast was the right choice…
Honestly, Stone plays a banana: yellow on the outside, white on the inside.
But “Aloha” is by no means the first film to have minority erasure. Jake Gyllenhaal played a Persian prince and Ben Kingsley played Gandhi in the ’80s. Angelina Jolie adopted the role of real-life person Mariane Pearl – a woman with Cuban and African ancestry, in “A Mighty Heart”. It’s everywhere and “Aloha” is the newest member of the whitewashing club.
With that said, Mashable reported that director Cameron Crowe recently issue an apology, saying Stone’s character is based on a “real-life red-headed local.”
The motion picture prides itself in making references to Hawaiian legends and myths, which is undoubtedly a redeeming quality…except that the audience probably can’t understand any of it. Unless you are an expert in all things Hawaii, the lack of explanation once again will allow you to substitute the confusions with whatever.
The cherry on top is that Crowe had all the puzzle pieces to create a substantial work of art. All he needed to do was follow the straight path in front of him. Instead he traded his cow for magic beans, except there weren’t magical. They were just beans.