Y'all remember when I used to write reviews here? No? Well let's get into it anyways.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is the newest installment in the never-ending Marvel cinematic universe that focuses on an Asian superhero (the titular character) who's powers are that he's really good fighting. First, let me give you guys a quick rundown on my opinion of the MCU. I like the MCU, I really do, I think it's fine and it truly is a momentous accomplishment to have such a large, connected and well established overarching storyline with very few, if any, major hiccups (Thor 2 comes to mind, but even that film isn't TERRIBLE). However, me personally, I prefer films with at least a hint of originality, something that truly sets them apart from other movies like them, and this is where the MCU usually suffers in my eyes. Having said that, Shang-Chi does provide a small breathe of fresh air, even if it does still follow some of the same beats as other films in the franchise. The characters, namely Shang-Chi (played by the charismatic Simu Liu), his best friend Katy (Awkwafina), and his villainous father (Tony Leung), are all very entertaining on screen, and the humor is relatively contained unlike some Marvel films. The action in this movie is what truly sets it apart. Although it slips slowly back into what you'd expect from a superhero movie toward the end of the film, the first act has some very well filmed and choreographed fight sequences. Don't get me wrong, it's got nothing on great (and usually foreign) martial arts films, but it's a step up from what Hollywood usually delivers. All in all, the colorful cast, well shot action, and delightful humor that doesn't stifle the drama all make for a great addition to the Marvel pantheon, even if it still has the same predictable story and big budget climax issues as all the others. I'm going to give it a grade of B.
P.S. I actually put Shang-Chi as #8 and #6 in my list of favorite MCU films and favorite films of 2021 respectively.