Sunday, September 5, 2021

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

My family went to see Shang Chi this afternoon. I'm definitely going to have a second viewing (or more) of this, both because of the things I loved about it, but also because there were a few things I missed (the trouble with taking a 7 year old to a movie like this is he can't focus when things aren't action packed or funny, so I can't focus). There may also be a few plot holes. Pretty much, though, it's a solid movie. 

Also, mandatory warning on language (since my blog has "curse" in the title and Google directs parents here): There are quite a few minor curse words. My 7 year old loves that. Mostly from Awkwafina's character Katy. No F-bombs, but similar levels to those in Black Widow and The Falcon & the Winter Soldier. 

My initial, and spoiler free, impression of the movie is that I liked it. A LOT! If you know my RPG work, you won't be surprised. I was looking forward to a super-powered kung fu movie. I figured, since it's involving a villain mostly from Iron Man comics (although with alien tech "magic" rings), that it would be relatively grounded in the "real world" of the MCU. Nope! Don't want to spoil things, but it's more akin to Thor or Dr. Strange than Iron Man or Captain America

Also, the second half of the movie was very much like a game of Flying Swordsmen! So yeah, you can guess I'd dig it from that. 

It's Marvel Studios, so of course the production values were great, the action scenes well done (most of them were easy to follow, but one was a bit confusing for me -- but again that may have been because I had to constantly stop my younger son from kicking the seat in front of him or climbing on the back of his own seat). The casting was good. Nice to see Tony Leung and Michelle Yeoh. Makes me want to rewatch Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Jet Li's Hero. I haven't seen either of them in a while. 

Also, there are two helpings of shawarma. I was expecting one to tie in to The Eternals due to (spoiler) and because it's the next MCU movie to come out, but it didn't directly. The mid-credit scene was pretty funny, while the after-credit scene was just a short set-up for a future film. 

Are you an MCU fan like me? This one will wet your whistle. Are you a martial arts/wuxia fan like me? This one will deliver. Are you an Asian-themed fantasy buff like me? You'll be happily surprised at a few little things here and there. If you don't really like any of these things, why are you bothering to read this review?

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