Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings ★★★½

Colour me pleasantly surprised.

Before Marvel announced this movie, I had never heard of Shang-Chi before, despite being a comic nut. I skim his Wiki page and I think:
Huh, how would he tie into everything else in the MCU?
However, I have to say, he’s implemented really well.

It just gives us a different perspective in a different locale on Earth than what we’re used to. And I’m all for it. And Shang-Chi? He’s pretty fun.

It’s visually interesting, and it has some killer direction.

However, I have four major criticisms.

I could not stand Awkwafina. She was kinda funny in the beginning, but she got less and less amusing as it went on.

Shang-Chi’s sister is kinda bland and doesn’t do much. Perhaps if Shaun and his sister went to San Fransisco together and the movie was built around a sibling relationship? Cut Awkwafina out entirely. Or combine the two characters.

The Death Dealer seemed to be hyped up by the marketing as the big bad’s henchman. In the flashbacks, it seems as though he personally trained and overlooked Shang-Chi. I was hoping for some mini boss battle before the final level. But he doesn’t do anything, gets taken out like a punk, and is mostly overshadowed by the dude with the sword hand. High expectations or bad decisions? I mean, they put an action figure out for this guy. Yea, who wants a Death Dealer figure?

Man, this movie really goes all out on tickling your balls with the promise of Mephisto. He’s so blatantly set up and while I didn’t want a full grand entrance, maybe a cheeky hint at himself, my testes turned blue majorly when a giant generic CGI monster shows up at the end. Even more so because the fight between Shang-Chi and his father should’ve been the climax. 

Could’ve done without the soulsuckers as they felt very inconsequential to what else was going on in the story.

Onto good things, it’s a pleasure to see Trevor Slattery once more. And he performs a Chad move. Why don’t more people in fiction pretend to be dead amongst a battlefield with bodies? High IQ move.
Morris was nice, but he’s barely in it and I doubt Morris Plushes would sell. 

And Shang-Chi’s Dad? One the best MCU villains we’ve had in a while. He’s cool, threatening, yet also sympathetic. A triple whammy.

End credits scene is promising. Maybe not the one with Shaun’s sister, perhaps.

Was expecting something really bland, but I found something with a lot of heart. 

The Eternals on the other hand….

ACritic liked these reviews