Unlike other movies Disney released during the pandemic, Shang-Chi wasn’t available to stream on Disney Plus. While it surely helped bolster Shang-Chi‘s box office take, the strategy crimps options for fans who got used to streaming same-day movies or for anyone nervous about packing into cinemas as the delta variant stokes a resurgence of COVID-19.
When Does Shang-Chi Come Out (Release Date)?
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings releases on Friday, September 3, 2021.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is expected to be released globally on different dates. Here’s the schedule for the release of Shang-Chi:
- September 1: France, Indonesia, Italy, South Korea, Netherlands, Sweden, and Singapore
- September 2: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Czechia, Germany, Denmark, Hong Kong, Hungary, Mexico, Cambodia, Portugal, Serbia, Russia, Slovakia, Taiwan, and Ukraine.
- September 3: Bulgaria, Canada, Spain, Finland, UK, Ireland, India, Iceland, Latvia, Poland, Turkey, Lithuania, Saudi Arabia, and the USA.
- September 9: Greece
- September 16: Thailand
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Who is Shang-Chi?
Shang-Chi is a martial arts master and superhero from Marvel comics.
The character hasn’t had much crossover with other notable Marvel heroes throughout his comic history, occasionally showing up to help the Avengers or appearing in the Secret Wars storyline, but he’s about to become huge in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings will tell the superhero origin story of Shang-Chi. He was trained from a young age to be an assassin by his father but eventually defected and left his family to seek a new life in the USA.
As his past starts to catch up with him Shang-Chi must face the mysterious Ten Rings organisation.
Shang-Chi‘s superpowers mainly lie in his incredible fighting skills. He excels at a range of hand-to-hand combat and weapon fighting styles. The character has also gained superhuman abilities from his use of the ten rings which each gift him a different elemental or psionic power.
We’ll have to wait and see how Shang-Chi‘s powers are translated to the film adaptation.
Is Shang-Chi streaming on Disney Plus?
No. It became available only in theaters Sept. 3.
The theatrical exclusive is a big change from Disney’s new normal during the pandemic. As cinemas shuttered or slashed capacity, Disney Plus became an outlet for the company to make movies available to wider audiences, especially as the stockpile of delayed films swelled.
Some Disney movies — typically mid budget live-action movies and its latest Pixar films, Luca and Soul — skipped theaters entirely and were available to stream on Disney Plus at no extra cost. For the biggest films, Disney Plus introduced its Premier Access model to sell streaming access to new, big-screen movies.
Disney Plus members could stream brand-new movies at home for a $30 fee on top of their subscription price, a model called Premier Access. Disney has released five movies this way, notably Marvel’s Black Widow in July.
Can I watch Shang-Chi in 4K, HDR and Dolby Atmos?
Short answer: yes. Providing you have a TV or home cinema set-up that is compatible with 4K, Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos, you’ll be able to watch Shang-Chi in the best possible quality.
Disney+ titles are displayed and play in the maximum quality available through your hardware, so if, for example, your TV supports all three technologies you’ll see the logos for each within the title’s description on the Disney+ interface.
Is Shang-Chi On HBO MAX?
No. Shang-Chi is not on HBO MAX. Shang-Chi is a Marvel’s movie, not a Warner Bros. movie, and therefore will not be streaming on HBO Max when it opens in theaters. While HBO Max—which is owned by Warner Media—has been the streaming home for Warner Bros. movies like The Suicide Squad, it will not be the streaming home for Disney movies like Shang-Chi.
Is. Shang-Chi on NETFLIX?
No. Shang-Chi (2021) is not on Netflix, and likely will not be on Netflix any time soon.
How to watch Shang-Chi online
Shang-Chi can be seen in theaters. Tickets are now available so use sites like Fandango and Movie Tickets to view times and buy tickets in either standard or IMAX.
However, the film will not have a simultaneous release on Disney+ Premier Access. It will have a theatrical window of around 45 days, which is shorter than the standard 90 days. After that, it will head to Disney+ can be seen by subscribers at no additional cost sometime in mid-October.
Reviews and reactions
CNET film critic Richard Trenholm writes, “Shang-Chi comes with Marvel strengths and weaknesses while also feeling like something winningly new.”
He goes on to say that the film is “visually and narratively distinct from the rest of the franchise. Shang-Chi is Marvel’s first Asian lead, and the style of the film draws on the rich history of Asian cinema, from martial arts movies to gangster films to romance, and in particular the lush visual and emotional style of wuxia epics.”
It’s full of action, engaging characters, and Marvel’s trademark humor, Trenholm says.
CNET’s Joan E. Solsman also praised the film: “Built on a framework telling the story of one family’s reckoning with grief, it layers on action and humor while playfully blending genres, for the best kind of summer popcorn flick.”
But as both Solsman and Trenholm point out, it’s hard to celebrate this groundbreaking movie when its initial launch is theaters-only at a time when coronavirus numbers are rising. The movie may be great, but its distribution seems questionable at best.