“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” is a Marvel superhero movie released in 2021.
The film is directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and the actors are Simu Liu, Tony Leung, Awkwafina, and Michelle Yeoh.
The plot tells that “Shang-Chi” received his father’s iron-blood training since childhood and was proficient in various martial arts moves.
When he grew up, he fled his hometown and changed his surname, and met his new best friend Katy, living a peaceful life.
Until the past came to the door again, can “Shang-Chi” face the invincible power of Ten Rings, can he get rid of his father’s influence?
The origin of the most serious storytelling hero
In 2018, “Crazy Rich Asians” achieved box office and word-of-mouth success, showing the audience’s curiosity and interest in Eastern society.
After that, Hollywood began to appear many works about Asian or immigrant culture such as “The Farewell” and “Tigertail”.
And now this trend has also blown into the Marvel universe.
Marvel launched the first superhero movie “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” with Chinese as the protagonist, which also brought a refreshing experience to the audience.
The background of the “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” story
“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” did not introduce the protagonist “Shang-Chi” to the audience at the beginning, but went back to a thousand years ago.
“Wenwu” played by Tony Leung is a conqueror who dominates the Quartet.
Because he has the “Ten Rings” that can bring him immortality and overwhelming power, he led the “Ten Rings organization” to sweep the entire Eurasian continent like Genghis Khan.
Until he reached a pure land “Ta Lo” hidden in the bamboo forest, he met the guardian “Ying Li” who was blocking him.
Ying Li defeated Wenwu with the mysterious power endowed by nature, and the two also sparked the spark of love in the fight.
This made Wenwu choose to let go of the “Ten Rings” and the desire to conquer the world, and start a family with Ying Li.
They gave birth to a pair of children, Shang-Chi and Xialing, and then spent a happy time.
However, the good times did not last long. The former enemies of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” came to seek revenge, and Ying Li died in order to protect the young children.
This made Wenwu devastated, and he decided to start rigorously training Shang-Chi, so that he could practice good kung fu and various killing skills at a young age.
Time comes to modern times, and the protagonist of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”, Shang-Chi, cannot bear the high expectations placed by his father Wenwu.
As a teenager, he fled his hometown and came to San Francisco, where he became a parking boy with his friend Katy.
They lead a carefree life every day, but it is just like the connection between family and blood that the Eastern society emphasizes.
Even though Shang-Chi’s name changed and he was in a distant foreign land, this unforgettable past did not let him go so easily.
Just like “Crazy Rich Asians” and “The Farewell” films contain many cultural conflicts that the protagonists who grew up in the United States have come to the East to face.
“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” is also obviously influenced by works like Ang Lee’s “Pushing Hands” and Wayne Wang’s “The Joy Luck Club”.
Even as a superhero movie, “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” also uses a lot of space to describe the contradictory choice between self and family of Shang-Chi, who has Western independent thinking.
And this has become the main point of the whole movie “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” and the problems the protagonist must face and overcome.
The most serious storytelling Marvel hero movie
Therefore, “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” focuses on the story of Shang-Chi and his sister Xialing, who had been away from home for many years, returning to his father’s Wenwu Ten Rings Gang.
Then they learned that because Wenwu missed his late mother Ying Li too much, he decided to lead his men to attack Ta Lo, his hometown where Ying Li’s soul was suspected to be imprisoned and his family could not be reunited.
“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” not only defected to Ta Lo by unwilling to support his father’s conquest plan, Shang-Chi and his sister Xialing, but also brought out another Marvel universe like “Black Panther” Vagan Da’s “hidden world” also allows the root cause behind this crisis to give the characters flesh and blood that the audience can understand.
There is no doubt that “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” should be the “hero origin movie” with the most serious storytelling in the entire Marvel universe and the most effort to shape the mood and background of the characters in the film.
Whether it is the difference in the living environment, the inheritance of the family blood, the difficult parent-child relationship, or the self-doubt caused by the child’s family pressure.
The directors used the grievances between the father and son Shang-Chi and Wenwu to make the whole story of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” arouse the audience.
I really like that “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” does not only put the story on the protagonist of “Shang-Chi”, but in the middle of the plot, it focuses more on the design of the father Wenwu played by Tony Leung.
Although Wenwu is set to be the villain of this movie, the audience can clearly see the other side of him as a husband and father behind the typical villain image of the conqueror.
Whether it is the gentleness of holding his own flesh and blood, bandaging his injured son in martial arts training, or the regret and paranoia after losing his wife, Tow Wai Leung’s nearly perfect interpretation of the role makes him a relatively rare man in Marvel movies, enough to support it. Affordable the villain of the “Legend of Ten Rings” in the title.
As the leader of the Ten Rings Gang and the owner of the “Ten Rings” artifact, Wenwu advocates absolute power.
Especially after putting down the ten rings indirectly led to the death of his wife, this idea was also deeply ingrained in Wenwu’s mind.
Therefore, he carried out rigorous training for Shang-Chi, hoping that his children could become stronger and shoulder the responsibility of protecting his family and inheriting his career in the future.
It’s just such a high level of expectations, but it also makes “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” just a child, Shang-Chi has the idea of escaping.
The theme of the “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” plot
The most exciting part of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” lies in the dilemma and contradiction within the character.
Having watched his mother die in order to protect herself, Shang-Chi can actually agree with his father to some extent.
But on the other hand, he flinched because he doubted his own abilities and worried that he could not become a strong man like his father.
Therefore, it was not until Shang-Chi retrieved the memory of his late mother and saw the aunt Ying Nan played by Michelle Yeoh that this predicament had an opportunity to change.
The change in mentality of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” is also largely reflected in Shang-Chi’s fighting style.
From the original clenched fist that can cause huge damage, he later learned to open his palm to block the offensive and counterattack.
The father’s tough “rigidity” and the mother’s tolerant “softness” are combined in Shangqi.
It also allowed him to finally overcome his demons during the confrontation with his father.
While breaking the shadow of his father’s generation, he also assumed the responsibility of protecting his family and home.
He finally became a hero who can be alone.
The meaning of the ending of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”
“Ten Rings” in “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” can be said to be a symbol of strength.
But this power is not only whether it can cause harm to the enemy, but also more self-confidence and spiritual growth that knows one’s own goals.
It allows people to bravely face and overcome the oncoming challenges in a situation full of unknowns.
This is what a superhero should have.
I like the many ingenuities and metaphors in the whole movie “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”.
“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”, except that there is not much awkwardness that touches Eastern culture from a Western perspective.
Under the similar but completely different perspectives of Liang Chaowei and Simu Liu, the film brings out the problems that every family may encounter through various elements.
In the ending of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”, the conflicts between each other are resolved by blood and family relationships that will never disappear.
It can be said that the film breaks through the established framework of superhero films with literary drama, and brings a new atmosphere to the Marvel Cinematic Universe that I hope other works can emulate.
“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” film review conclusion
Overall, “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” is not only a great but also very approachable heroic journey, he is also an excellent action movie.
From the sudden battle for necklaces on the bus, to the underground fighting arena in Macau, to Ta Lo, hidden in the bamboo forest.
Combining Jackie Chan’s Hong Kong-style martial arts and action scenes like “Crouching Tiger” martial arts, both in the film’s mood of the characters, the motivation behind their actions, and the excellent performances of Tony Leung and Michelle Yeoh, let “Shang-Chi and the “Legend of the Ten Rings” became a rather special work in the Marvel universe.
The stinger of “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”
The movie “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” has two ending stinger at the end.
In the first paragraph, after the crisis was resolved, Wong approached Shang-Chi and Katy who were telling friends about their heroic deeds in the restaurant.
After investigation and identification by Captain Marvel and Dr. Banner, they said that the history of the “Ten Rings” treasure is much longer than a thousand years.
This also directly lifted the follow-up development of the “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” story to the pattern of the universe.
In the second paragraph, stinger took over his father’s Ten Ring Gang and became the new leader for his sister Xialing.
What she will do in the future is also worth looking forward to.