You can call Marvel movies formulaic all you want, Shang-Chi sure follows its formula to the letter and it’s just fun to watch. It entertains from beginning to end and you happily sit through all the credits for that after credits scene. Some might argue, that you can have it cheaper and watch it at home, sure. However, Shang-Chi is also beautifully choreographed and the stunning fight scenes are all the more impressive on the big screen.
Marvel fans will like all the little nods throughout the movie and also the bigger nods, including the fake “Mandarin”, Trevor Slattery (Ben Kingsley). Needless to say, this is not a serious movie even though once again we are facing the end of the world, but well come on, you really expect the end of the world to happen? Thanos tried and look where that got him.
Shaun (Simu Liu) and Katy (Awkwafina) are just hilarious on screen and I am looking forward to seeing more of them when the Ten Rings return, for return they shall, of course. In fact the whole cast was stellar, from adorable headless pet Morris to Razor Fist “Hey, that’s my car!!” (Florian Munteanu) with Trevor taking the cake for playing dead, could have fooled more than just Morris there.
Let’s talk about the real hero or villain or let’s call him Dad, Wenwu flawlessly portrayed by Tony Chiu-Wai Leung. I am flabbergasted that this is his first role in an American film, incredulous! Wenwu is the conflicted hero consumed by revenge after the tragic loss of his wife, neglecting son Shang-Chi and daughter Xialing (Meng’er Zhang) and becoming obsessed with the idea of bringing the love of his life back, hearing her voice, telling him to free her from her magical prison. Yes, sure! We know what’s really going on but it is also so easy to sympathize with Wenwu in all his grief-stricken blood for blood madness, esp. since Leung’s performance is just beyond reproach.
The exuberating fight performances, the hilarious chemistry between the main actors, the humor and comic relief all just form one neat entertaining package you will enjoy every minute of it.