‘Shang Chi’ sets up many connections to MCU, captivates with mesmerizing digital effects


Quite possibly one of the best Marvel origin films, “Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” proved wrong numerous forecasts of a flop, breaking Labor Day box office records. “Shang Chi” provides with not only an entertaining and original origin film, but also includes numerous connections to MCU events and possible future story lines.

The film tells the story of how Shang Chi’s father, who is the real Mandarin from Iron Man, came to wield the power of the rings. The father runs the Ten Rings organization which was responsible for kidnapping Tony Stark in the first Iron Man movie. Most Marvel origin films focus on the superhero themselves, and minimally connect them to the MCU early on. “Shang Chi” changes this with numerous appearances from Wong, and two surprise Avengers making an appearance in one of the post credits scenes (yes, one of the post credits scenes). These connections lead many fans to believe that Shang Chi will have a major role in phase four of Marvel going forward.

For a film about a hero not many knew about going into theaters, the film did an exceptional job introducing the character and telling the story about the ten rings, as well as connecting the characters to broader events. The film displays a well rounded theme of the value of family, even with the numerous conflicts between Shang Chi, his sister Xialing and their father. This would be a great film for younger viewers, as the digital effects are quite mesmerizing, and fight sequences entertaining as the actors completed martial arts courses for the film. The soundtrack is also very enjoyable throughout the film.

The comedic elements throughout the film help viewers understand these characters, especially Shang Chi’s friend Katy, are normal human beings, having normal jobs, eating out with friends and having karaoke nights. The speculation of the film failing in theaters led many to believe Marvel would end up delaying upcoming film “The Eternals,” but “Shang Chi” proved critics wrong. Marvel fans will find even more set up for them in the MCU with this film, and will leave theaters fulfilled after watching this film.

Grade: A