Shang-Chi and Legend of the Review of ‘Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings’

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Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (CREDIT: Marvel Entertainment/Screenshot)

Starring: Simu Liu, Awkwafina, Meng’er Zhang, Tony Leung, Michelle Yeoh, Fala Chen, Ben Kingsley, Florian Munteanu, Benedict Wong

Director: Destin Daniel Cretton

Running Time: 132 Minutes

Rating: PG-13

Release Date: September 3, 2021 (Theaters)

Most Marvel Cinematic Universe movies have me feeling some variation of “That was okay, I guess I enjoyed that.” But with Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, it was a little different. I saw it with my dad, who asked me multiple times how familiar I was with the character, which made me realize that I don’t think I’ve ever read a single comic book issue that featured Shang-Chi in any capacity. That freshness didn’t necessarily translate into meaning that Legend of the Ten Rings was any better than other recent MCU movies; rather, it just felt like less of a chore. And in fact, despite the presence of MCU vets like Benedict Wong and Ben Kingsley, it reminded me more of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon than anything Marvel-certified. Although I should note that I’ve never actually seen Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. But it did have such a huge impact on the culture that it kinda feels like I at least absorbed it. Will Shang-Chi have a similarly huge cultural impact? Probably not, but at least everyone appeared to be having a good time.

Grade: 7 Souls out of 10 Soul-Stealing Dragons

‘Just Mercy’ One Month After It Came Out Review

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CREDIT: Warner Bros.

There is a moment late in Just Mercy when death row inmate Walter McMillan’s (Jamie Foxx) conviction is suddenly overturned because the prosecuting representatives of Alabama suddenly decide to agree with the defense. It sounds pretty unbelievable, considering how the state has hitherto stubbornly refused to acknowledge the total lack of evidence against him, but apparently that’s how it actually went down. And that’s Just Mercy in a nutshell: agonizingly frustrating miscarriage of justice that keeps persisting, and then from out of nowhere sudden satisfaction in the form of a full exoneration. In simple terms, that makes this true life story successful, but in deeper terms, I would’ve liked it to explore what motivated that reversal a little more. That element is a big deal and quite unique compared to other stories of the wrongfully convicted. But while Just Mercy could have been a little more risk-taking, it’s still a net good to see the work of the Equal Justice Initiative on screen.

I give Just Mercy 3 Testimonies out of 5 Phony Deals.