This may be too early to call but...best MCU villain:
1) The complexity of this character. Never have I felt so conflicted over a villain since even though you know he’s a bad man, you just feel sorry for him.
2) The movie did the “romance redeemed the villain” trope, but effectively.
3) His fall from grace was well-done. You just feel he’s making the wrong choices, such as putting the ten rings back on again, breaking his promise to leave the warlord life. At the same time, you completely understand why he’s making these choices.
4) Everything about this character was so human. Tony Leung really brought in a certain sadness with Wenwu, that you could feel his anguish and grief even as he commits acts of violence. Since Tony’s made a career out of playing complicated men dealing with loneliness, this comes as no surprise.
5) The final showdown between Wenwu and Shang-Chi was enough to put this movie in my top 5. The way that Simu Liu and Tony Leung kept switching from rage to despair, from wanting to kill each other to hoping the other will stand down because there’s still love there...that’s what really made this movie work. They really nailed the dynamic of a father and son reluctantly battling each other, both wanting to win but not wanting to seriously hurt the other.
I’m sorry Killmonger...you’re still amazing, but I gotta give the Best MCU Villain crown to Wenwu/The Mandarin.
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