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Shang-Chi: Marvel’s Newest (and Greatest) Masterpiece

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

It’s hard to believe that we’ve gone so long without seeing Marvel content in general, let alone in theaters. There have been so many Marvel projects released this year that it seems like there’s never a dull moment when you’re a Marvel fan. With so many new releases, I wasn’t sure if they could outdo some of the shows from earlier this year or best the experience of watching a Marvel movie on the big screen, like with Black Widow. It’s safe to say, I have never been more wrong. 

On September 3, Marvel released the now-blockbuster Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. Going into this, I knew that I would love this movie — and I loved it a little too much. I’ve seen it twice, both of those showings being within a few days of each other. And I would pay to watch it weekly if my wallet would allow it. 

Shang-Chi is Marvel’s first Asian superhero and he gives us a hopeful look into the future of diversity and culture in the Marvel Universe. With its first Asian lead and primarily Asian cast, there was a lot at stake for Marvel to do this right and they did just that (and better)!

The characters, major and minor, all stole the show in their own way. Shang-Chi himself was everything that I personally could’ve wanted in a Marvel hero — and Simu Liu is the perfect casting for this character. Meng’er Zhang, who plays Shang-Chi’s sister, Xialing, stars in her breakout role and portrays her character beautifully. The family dynamic in this story is rough and broken, but it’s done so well. Even though Shang-Chi, Xialing and their father Wenwu haven’t seen each other in years and, for a lack of better words, hate each other, you can still sense the connection between them that had once been there before it was broken. 

We also see this family bond with Katy, Shang-Chi’s best friend, who is thrown into this world without notice. She never once abandons her friend and instead works with him, which makes her more of a family member than he’s had in the last decade. 

Honestly, there’s only one word to describe this movie: breathtaking. From the visuals to the storyline itself to every single character. The CGI of this movie is almost too well done, to the point where I sat in the theater thinking, “Yes. Dragons are real.” Every shot in this movie grabs your attention and even though I’ve seen it twice now, I still feel like I hadn’t seen everything this movie has to offer. It’s definitely one of those movies that you can watch time and time again and still find new things that you missed. 

And the soundtrack! The reviews are right in saying that this is one of the best Marvel soundtracks since Black Panther. My Spotify Wrapped will definitely be full of tracks from this movie and everyone will know “Run It” and “Fire in the Sky” for years to come. 

Do whatever you can to support this movie and its cast. Not only do they deserve it for all of their hard work but so does the Asian community as a whole, which has been unrepresented for so long. But not anymore. In the words of Simu Liu “[they] are the underdog; the underestimated.” This is the start of a new age for the MCU, not only for phase 4 but for so many viewers and fans who feel seen by this movie and the other upcoming projects. This isn’t the end for movies like Shang-Chi, but just part of the journey. I can’t wait to see what Marvel gives us next, but if you need me you can probably find me screaming over Shang-Chi for the foreseeable future. 

Hi, I’m Lexi. I’m a creative writing major at UCF who loves books, lifestyle, Disney.
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