Review: Fighting Spirit: Shang-Chi, the Legend of the Ten Rings
It’s difficult to imagine how Marvel can top Phase 3 with Avengers: Endgame. But Shang-Chi & the Legend of the Ten Rings feels like a real start. This new element helps to energize the universe. It includes new mythology that is amazing to the lore. This film is the first Asian-led superhero film in the MCU. Audiences seem to be excited for this movie as it’s breaking box office records this weekend. This is a wonderful picture that blends charm and incredible fighting to make it an entertaining watch.
Story: Newfound Origins
It is always exciting to see the hero’s journey and where they are now. Shang-Chi left everything behind when he was young to start afresh and escape his past. This story is filled with the theme of family, and it really lifts the emotions. His internal scars from his childhood are well portrayed. Flashbacks that show the brutal training and the horrors he saw are a stark reminder of how hard he endured. They do a lot more telling than showing during one critical reveal. This would have been shocking and would have been a great risk, but it would have been worth it.
With the Ten Rings and Ta Lo, this movie does a great job showing a new side to the vast world. Although The Ten Rings were featured in the Iron Man series of movies, it makes them feel like legitimate threats. These warriors are led by someone who has been fighting for thousands of years. It is fascinating to see how this organization will continue to have an impact on the world. We also get this mysticism from Ta Lo, which feels like an iconic landmark for the series. In a similar vein as Wakanda in Black Panther, we’ll discuss Ta Lo. Their culture is fascinating, and their weapons made of dragon scales are extraordinary.
Characters & Performance: A Fresh New Ensemble
Simu Liu’s first movie in MCU makes an impression. His presence is natural. He makes Shang-Chi relatable and allows his flaws to shine. He isn’t perfect, but he is trying to find his way in life. He has a charm that draws you to him and makes it easy to root for him. Even though this is his first movie, fans will be excited to see Simu Liu’s role in the MCU. It will be exciting to see where Shang Chi goes next and think about his future encounters with other heroes.
His chemistry is amazing with Awkwafina (who plays Shang-Chi’s best friend Katy), and I am so pleased that they are portrayed as platonic close friends. This is a unique route you won’t see in movies, as most main leads are in romantic plots. This is a common theme in movies, such as Doctor Strange, which shows our leads getting together despite not spending much time building it. We see two best friends, both confined to one another and have each other’s backs. Their banter is some of the hilarious scenes in the movie.