Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Movie Review

(L-R): Wenwu (Tony Leung), Xialing (Meng’er Zhang), Shang-Chi (Simu Liu) and Katy (Awkwafina) in Marvel Studios' SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS. Photo by Jasin Boland. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Takes Fans into the Mystic and Folklore

As the Marvel Cinematic Universe continues to grow fans have been taken on adventures through space, met alien races, and even dabbled in the mystic arts. But Shang-Chi is taking fans in a direction that the MCU hasn’t gone yet – into century-old folklore and mythology. As Marvel continues through their second wave of stories and movies, they’re taking us through new adventures and Shang-Chi is nothing short of beautiful as well as a fun action film all at once.

Xialing (Meng’er Zhang) in Marvel Studios’ SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS. Photo by Jasin Boland. ©Marvel Studios 2021. All Rights Reserved.

Shang-Chi follows the story of Shaun/Shang-Chi as the army of the Ten Rings come after him. We’re first introduced to him as a valet with his friend Katy (played by Awkwafina) and are quickly thrown into martial art style fights as he not only tries to defend his life but tries to stop being forced back into a life he ran away from. The son of a millennium-old leader of a dark underground network – Shang-Chi will do what he can to not become his father and to protect what is dear to him.

The movie crosses into the land of other dimensions, Chinese folk lore, mythical creatures and of course – evil beings. It builds it’s own worlds, and bad guys and doesn’t rely on any of the worlds previously built by the MCU to create its own story. While there are nods to some of the original stories and even characters coming back – they are only on the sidelines of the story, and Shang-Chi stands firmly on its own. Packed with action, Shang-Chi is an entertaining movie and the type we’ve missed seeing in theaters.

Marvel Studios’ SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021.

Going into Shang-Chi, I wasn’t really sold on the introduction of Awkwafina into the MCU. Her characters so far have been pretty much her playing herself on screen – not that they weren’t enjoyable, but her addition was the first time I questioned some of the casting of characters in the franchise. And while, at the beginning of the film, she’s the goofy character she always seems to play – as the story unfolds she comes into herself and the character. Making her character one that we’ll welcome to see again. This could have been a combination of her acting or the writing, but Katy’s development should be interesting as the franchise goes on and she grows more comfortable in the role.

Wenwu (Tony Leung) and Shang-Chi (Simu Liu) in Marvel Studios’ SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2021.

While Shang-Chi happens after the snappening, it’s interesting to see how this story will continue to develop. There are nods to the first wave of the MCU, characters we haven’t seen in decades reprising their roles and other locations brought back into the story. Yes, this ties things up neatly and connects them together but it also means the movie is full of Easter eggs for fans and they will enjoy that part of the movie alone. Pull in the mythology, the beautiful cultural references and of course the fight scenes – Shang-Chi enters the MCU strongly for this new wave of stories.

Shang-Chi will be in select theaters on September 3rd – and is a movie that you’re not going to want to miss.

Overall Rating

Five Star Review

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About SHANG CHI

Marvel Studios’ “Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings” stars Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, who must confront the past he thought he left behind when he is drawn into the web of the mysterious Ten Rings organization. The film also stars Tony Leung as Wenwu, Awkwafina as Shang-Chi’s friend Katy and Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan, as well as Fala Chen, Meng’er Zhang, Florian Munteanu and Ronny Chieng. “Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings” is directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and produced by Kevin Feige and Jonathan Schwartz, with Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso and Charles Newirth serving as executive producers. David Callaham & Destin Daniel Cretton & Andrew Lanham wrote the screenplay for the film, which opens in theaters on September 3, 2021.     

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