*SPOILERS for Always Be My Maybe*
Last Friday, ABMM began streaming on Netflix. I think I made it until 9AM my time before I kicked everyone out so I could watch it in peace. It’s really cute. I’ll admit it actually got too cheesy for me at the end, and that’s saying something from this RomCom schmaltz-lover. Overall it made me warm and fuzzy and I was willing to swallow the saccharine for a happy ending. The cast is great. I knew I would love Ali Wong and Randall Park but truly, everyone showed up to work in this film. Even with the really entertaining performances by Michelle Buteau, Vivian Bang, James Saito and Karan Soni, the standout among the supporting cast is Keanu Reeves. And it’s not even a talent or a “OMG Keanu!” thing, it’s how far he went to make fun of himself. His part could’ve easily been written into an episode for Extras, it was that level of self-deprecation. And – because we need more reason to love Keanu, right? – most of his bit in the movie was his idea.
One of the best scenes in “Always Be My Maybe,” the Netflix rom-com starring Ali Wong and Randall Park, features a cameo by Keanu Reeves.
Reeves plays himself as a love interest of Wong’s character, Sasha. In a scene the internet has GIFed countless times already, he makes a dramatic entrance at a restaurant where Sasha is on a double date with Marcus, played by Park. And he delivers some great one-liners.
Reeves also improvised some of his scenes, she said.
“At the Chateau Marmont, he pitched a couple of things that made it in. Like wearing glasses that had no lens,” Wong told Rolling Stone. “And the part in the game night scene where he lists all of these Chinese dignitaries, that was all his idea. And when he says, ‘I don’t have a problem, Sasha. What’s your problem?’ and starts air-fighting. It’s hard to describe just how shockingly funny he is.”
The scene that is getting the most air time is his entrance in the film. And it is a great entrance, specifically for me because I did not realize he was playing himself. I thought he was this mythical character, bue he is playing Keanu Reeves to the hilt and it’s so much fun. He and Randall bounce off each other really well and his chemistry with Ali’s Sasha is electric. And Ali does deserve the credit here because Randall thought it would be funny to get Paul Giamatti in the role. Ali said that wasn’t the way she wanted to go, specifically because she wanted Sasha’s second love interest to be, “someone who was Asian-American who would also be Marcus’s worst nightmare.” Love Paul G as I do, I think Ali was right. Considering it was Keanu’s love of Ali’s comedy that made him say yes to the role, it’s neat that they let him flex his own improvisational chops. It worked so, so well.
Us just published one of their “What’s in My Bag” features with Ali. The first thing she listed was floss. Between Ali and Shailene Woodley’s thoughts on flossing, I think the dentist gods are trying to tell me something. Ali also carries sunblock that, as she said, is vital when living in LA. Other items include her red Moschino sunglasses, but we already know Ali’s glasses game is on point, Michelle Obama’s Becoming, a lot of balms, salves and moisturizers (which explains her gorgeous skin), various kid necessities like a bib, Neosporin, Q-Tips and Band-Aids (Hello Kitty variety) and a gold iPhone X. This all sounds like the purse of a mom with small kids. I wonder how many times people ask Ali to bring out her phone just to show them Keanu in her contacts? I’d ask her to show me every time.
And just for fun, Marcus’ closing song:
Photo credit: WENN Photos, Netflix and YouTube