Contributing opinion writer
Kalos K. Chu
To the writers and journalists and filmmakers of the world: Words matter, and how we tell Asian and Asian American stories matters. Spell names correctly. Do research. Challenge the model minority myth. Hire people to tell their own stories. Call out racism for what it is, and do not mince words. Think about the repercussions of what you put out into the world because — as Tuesday’s events have made abundantly clear — the consequences can be life or death.
“Raya and the Last Dragon” is an uplifting, action-packed, beautifully animated film with a lot of heart, and a worthy addition to the Disney canon. But being a part of that canon inevitably comes with limitations.
“Minari” is a beautiful film. Yes, because of its grounded, lush depiction of rural America, but also because of the story it tells: the immigrant experience — the American experience — and all its idiosyncrasies, its ups and downs, and its unparalleled beauty.
I present to you the Masthead of the 147th Guard of Arts Board of The Harvard Crimson as characters from “Parks and Recreation.”
“Soul” offers a thesis on the meaning of human life — a difficult question to answer in a 200-page philosophy dissertation, much less a 104-minute animated film. And it does so with all the beauty, detail, and imagination that audiences have come to expect from Pixar.
I think a lot about how easily tempted I was. A letter, an envelope, a particularly melodramatic delivery system, and all arguments, statistics, and Crimson exposés vanished from memory. I was a little disappointed in myself, but mostly, I was confused. I consider myself a relatively secure person. I like my life here, sans final clubs. How could I hate everything about what they are and what they represent, yet still be tempted?
But sometimes I wonder, if I’d carried out my summer as planned, if I’d done my internship and went back to Harvard, would I ever have had these thoughts? Would I have realized that journalism wasn’t the field for me? Would I have committed to changing concentrations? Would I have mustered the gusto to commit to an even less employable career path? I can’t help but think the answer would be no.