An impressive charming picture with a great heart. Harkening back to the awesome martial arts epics of the past. Filled to the brim in cinematic quality Shang-Chi and The Legend Of The Ten Rings tells a story about a family and their struggles to become one once more, the picture reminds us of what we’ve missed while and rewarding our patience with something new.
Director Daniel Destin Cretton (Short Term 12, Just Mercy), hones in on the story of a family whilst introducing a grander world at scale. Even with the acknowledgement of the greater Marvel Cinematic Universe, the picture doesn’t get bogged down by its larger world but embraces it instead. Alongside the marvelous visuals laid down throughout the film, Cretton also interjects some serious conversation that’ll make the picture even more enjoyable.
Leading this gem of a cast is Simu Lu (Kim’s Convienence, Women Is Losers, Orphan Black) as Shang-Chi, who plays the character with this sense of fun, humbleness and stoicism to him while still playing to dormant factor of a man whose running and finally comes to that decision to stop. His transformation and growth through this film makes him one to watch in future installments both in and out of the MCU. Awakafina (The Farewell, Crazy Rich Asians, Oceans Eight) is as good as ever with her role in the film bringing her sharp wit and impressive comedic chops to the film. Meng’er Zhang brings a great sense of passion to the role making her character just as important as Shang-Chi was to the story. To round out my praise is to mention the amazing Tony Leung (Infernal Affairs, Happy Together) who completely steals the show with a character to we have yet to see like him in the MCU, bringing his subdued tempered nature is just the tip of the iceberg of the gravitas he brings to the role of the mandarin here. Making his purpose not about what he wants with the power but to regain what he’s lost and hoping it brings back what he once had…. family. There’s another welcomed guest in the film in Michelle Yeoh (Crazy Rich Asians, Tomorrow Never Dies) who although isn’t in the whole film but when she arrives completely owns every scene she’s in. The last person I want to heap praise on is Florian Munteanu (Creed II) who after a long stint away I’m so glad to see him back here in a big studio picture bringing a tone which he hadn’t seen previous in the small work he’s been able to do but all I want to say is that he better be in the next one.
Overall this is picture is one I highly recommend usually marvel movies have this run of the mill type. Keep in mind I say that while being a huge fan of these of all super hero movies. However Shang-Chi, just hits different in a way that made me so happy with what I was watching as I went to see it on the biggest screen I could and recommend you do the same. Let me know your thoughts on the film below.