‘Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings’ Review – A Thrilling Martial Arts Odyssey

How the hell do you introduce a new superhero this far into the Marvel game? This is something the MCU has to contend with as the roster gets bigger, and Shang-Chi is the newest member post-Endgame. For one, you stack the right talent: director Destin Daniel Cretton at the helm, a storied action cinematographer in Bill Pope, the late Brad Allan as fight choreographer, along with a dizzying who’s who of a predominantly Asian cast. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings may be burdened with the standard grooves of an origin story, but it blazes past the stumbling block to the tune of a martial arts action romp.

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Hard Boiled, Or How I Met Tony Leung

I’ve been hyped for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings for many reasons: director Destin Daniel Cretton at the helm, Bill Pope as cinematographer (The Matrix trilogy & Scott Pilgrim vs. the World), and former Jackie Chan pupils Andy Cheng and the late Brad Allan serving as the film’s fight choreographers. All this talent on board to help bring Marvel’s first Asian superhero to life, with a proper ensemble that includes OG martial arts ass-kicker Michelle Yeoh.

I was all in before the trailers, baby.

Respectfully, the film’s biggest flex for me came from the casting of Tony Leung as the villain. That’s a hell of a way to get me to root against the hero.

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A Word on Bruce Lee and Asian Superheroes

I have to start off by saying I’m sorry. This is not what I planned to publish at all on the release of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. I’ve been fixing up some fun tie-in pieces on Marvel’s latest, some deep-dives into lingering MCU plot threads and a couple spotlights on the film’s stars—which I’ll roll out shortly. (My Labor Day plans have been cancelled in light of everything going on so I’ve got nothing else to do this weekend 🙃) But all of my Shang-Chi inspired content are on hold at the moment because I saw something on Twitter that combusted my brain.

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Comic-Con 2019: Highlights from the Marvel Studios Panel

I keep thinking Marvel Studios has outdone themselves and, as always, it seems like they’re only just getting started.

Kevin Feige and crew dropped so many bombshells yesterday that I’m still dumbstruck. I can only process such things by way of lists and rankings. I’m aware hype levels are subjective, but this is the only way I can vent my excitement at the moment so bear with me. (Literally shaking as I type this.) Here are my top five favorite Marvel Studios announcements from Comic-Con 2019: Continue reading