The anticipation surrounding Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is high, especially considering that this is Marvel's first foray into the realm of martial arts.
Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, the upcoming solo MCU movie follows the origin story of Shang-Chi who will be played by Kim's Convenience star Simu Liu. The actor will be joined by a slew of Asian stars such as Awkwafina, Fala Chen, and Tony Leung who will portray the real Mandarin of the Ten Rings organization.
Exact plot details are still being kept under wraps, but marketing already provided a glimpse of how the narrative will shape out. The trailers showed that Shang-Chi would be involved in a bittersweet reunion with the Mandarin to possibly take over the Ten Rings organization, but it seems that the titular kung fu expert is not on board with the idea.
Aside from that, a martial arts tournament was also confirmed to be featured, showcasing several returning favorites like Abomination and Wong. The presence of this competition could hint that this will be the home of unexpected MCU cameos in the film.
The thrilling action and stunning death-defying sequences were already previewed in the trailers of Shang-Chi, and the film's official rating could essentially confirm that there will be more in the final cut.
SHANG-CHI'S FILM RATING
A listing from the Classification and Rating Administration of the Motion Picture Association confirmed that Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is rated PG-13 for "sequences of violence and action, and language."
In comparison, Black Widow has a similar PG-13 rating due to "intense sequences of violence/action, some language and thematic material."
SHANG-CHI WILL DIAL UP THE ACTION
Many would agree that this rating for Shang-Chi is expected because it is still under the Marvel Studios banner.
A PG-13 rating fits the thrilling action sequences that Shang-Chi will deliver while also keeping the lighthearted tone of the MCU. The trailers showed a preview of the balance between the violent action and comedic dynamic of the characters, and these elements are expected to carry over into the final cut of the film.
Simu Liu promised that Shang-Chi is going to showcase action sequences “in a way that MCU fans, or any fans, have never seen before.” This was further amplified by the comments of Shang-Chi writer Dave Callaham about the unprecedented action scenes of the film that he described as "very visceral and very practical."
Based on the combined comments from the cast and crew and the trailers, it's reasonable to assume that Shang-Chi will deliver in the action department. As for keeping up with the usual comedic tone and heartfelt moments of the MCU, the fact that the film will explore themes of family and redemption is proof that it will likely live up to expectations.
The PG-13 rating has been the common staple of the MCU, and so far, it's safe to say that it is working. Shang-Chi's rating could serve as a reminder that the hero belongs to the pitch-perfect tone of the franchise.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will premiere in theaters on September 3, 2021.