Header Ads

Shang-Chi’s Bus Fight Echoed A Classic Spider-Man 2 Fight

Warning! Spoilers ahead for Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings delivers a thrilling first act fight in a runaway bus, that echoes back to a similar skirmish between Spider-Man and Doc Ock aboard an elevated train in Spider-Man 2Shang-Chi has firmly established itself as another hit for Marvel, delighting MCU fans and general audiences in equal measure. Part of its success can be attributed to its dynamic fight scenes. Actor Simu Liu extensively trained with the stunt crew in order to convincingly portray Shang-Chi onscreen and was able to perform his own stunts in the movie.

Simu Liu's skills are adeptly displayed in the fight that closes the first act. Traveling on a bus on their way to work, Shang-Chi is attacked by the Ten Rings, led by Razor-Fist, attempting to obtain a pendant once belonging to his mother. Amidst an assortment of commuters, Shang-Chi reveals his hidden talents for the first time to his best friend Katy (Awkwafina), as well as the audience. Utilizing his wits, environment and whatever else is to hand, Shang-Chi is able to take down his attackers, while Katy is forced to steer the bus down San Francisco’s precipitous streets.

Related: Shang-Chi's Spider-Man: Homecoming Cameo Explained

The scene itself is well directed, offering balletic fight moves that have been expertly choreographed, and presented as continuous takes (rather the quick-cut editing style that has hampered many action movies since the turn of the century). However, the fight is also reminiscent of Spider-Man's train battle with Doc Ock in Spider-Man 2The stakes are similar as both modes of transport threaten to crash as a direct result of the fighting, and both are filled with innocent bystanders. As the bus careens out of control Shang-Chi has the double task of continuing to fight while also protecting the passengers, mirroring Spider-Man's efforts to catch people thrown indiscriminately out of the train by Doc Ock.

The train fight is arguably the highlight of Spider-Man 2 from an action perspective, though as impressive it is, it's the consequences of the fight that give the sequence such dramatic weight. The runaway train careening towards the end of the line, with Peter giving it everything he's got to stop it in time is as thrilling today as it was back in 2004. Meanwhile, the passengers agreeing to keep Spider-Man’s secret identity safe when he passes out from the exertion, even putting themselves in further harm's way in an (ill-advised) attempt to protect him from Doc Ock, is touching and gratifying after everything that Peter's given up to be Spider-Man. Shang-Chi's fight doesn't really have those communal human moments, but that's not the drive of the film this early in the story. Rather it's the exhilaration of seeing Shang-Chi in action for the first time that makes it such a memorable scene.

The bus scene also uses another staple of action films; the flight within a confined space. The MCU has embraced this troupe well in the past (Captain America vs Hydra agents in an elevator, or Daredevil's stairwell fight), and Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings' version of it raises the bar further through Simu Liu's speed and movement. While it may not have the dramatic weight of Spider-Man 2's train sequence, Shang-Chi’s bus fight still has the potential to become equally iconic over time as the moment a new cinematic hero was born.

Next: Shang-Chi Dunks On Hawkeye's "Powers"

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.