One True Loves

For six years, Emma Blair (Phillipa Soo) and Jesse Learner (Luke Bracey) were the perfect couple, traveling the world together and falling deeper in love with every passing day. But when Jesse goes away on the trip of a lifetime and his helicopter goes down, Emma believes that he’s dead. Moving on seems impossible, but with the help of her family, she manages to get back on her feet. She even gets a second shot at love with childhood friend Sam (Simu Liu). As life gets back on track, Emma receives a call that changes everything – Jesse is alive after all. Suddenly she is faced with making an impossible choice for her future.

I have literally been trying to watch this movie for a month so you could imagine how happy I was when it finally hit Prime this weekend. Considering the fact that I was a big fan of the book by Taylor Jenkins Reid, I was curious to see how the adaption would hold up. There were some good parts, but there were, unfortunately, some not so good ones as well and overall it could have been much better.

Let me start with the good. I thought the casting choices were spot on. Soo as Emma was excellent. She first stole our hearts as Eliza Hamilton in the stage production of Hamilton and I am so glad that she’s breaking out into more projects now. Her performance was genuine and filled with earnest. I also loved Liu as the leading man here! Give this man more romance roles because he absolutely smashed this. Bracey was fine as Jesse, exactly as I imagined he’d be and it was hard to choose who I wanted Emma to be with.

Where I think this film suffered was in its marketing. Produced by Buzzfeed Studios, not a lot of people knew about it and it shows. With a bigger budget, I think it could have made for a decent enough. And as for the changes that were made, while I understand this is normal, I felt like the constant flashbacks came off as confusing and the way in which the scenes were cut together seemed choppy and uneven.

Am I still happy that I finally had the chance to check out One True Loves? Of course I am! It made for some easy Friday night viewing after a hectic work week. While this film may have missed the mark, it wasn’t all bad.

Rating: ♥️♥️.5

Shang Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings

The much anticipated Shang Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings premiered in cinemas this Friday. Shang Chi, or Shaun (Simu Liu) as he goes by most of the time, is a seemingly normal guy who works as a valet driver with his best friend Katy (Awkwafina). But when his past comes back to haunt him, he is forced to confront it as well as his father who just so happens to be notorious villain Mandarin (Tony Chiu-Wai Leung). Being the master of unarmed weaponry in Kung Fu, Shang Chi hopes his skills will help him in combating the Ten Rings organization all while saving the world at the same time.

I had such high hopes for this movie. Origin stories for superheroes can be very hit or miss and they hyped this one up like crazy. I am happy to say that it completely and totally exceeded my expectations! I can’t get over how good it was or how much I liked it. I was transfixed the whole way through and at times I found myself shaking my head at what I was seeing unfold in front of me.

The casting for Shang Chi himself was always on point for me. Simu Liu seems like such a down to earth guy and I couldn’t imagine anybody else in this role. He’s become a little Toronto treasure and I am proud to live in the city from where he hails. Awkwafina brought the much needed comedic relief and I just loved watching her friendship with Shang. I really hope they don’t make them go down the romantic route because it’s so refreshing to see a healthy boy girl friendship for once. Mandarin is possibly one of the most heartbreaking villains to ever come out of the MCU. Learning about his backstory and what his motives were really made you feel for him. A highlight for me was Shang’s sister Xialing (Meng’er Zhang) who I knew nothing about beforehand. Not only was she a complete badass, but she had a lot of depth too and I hope we see more of her in future films. And to have Michelle Yeoh in this as well was just a treat. She’s such a queen and her role here was no exception.

I cannot get over the special effects that were used. It seemed to be on a whole other level this time around and I don’t know how Marvel does it. The fight sequences were also impressive. In particular, the final one in Ta-Lo was like nothing I had ever seen before. Everything about it was A+ and deserves awards.

Shang Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings was the first superhero movie to have proper Asian representation. It really was beautiful to be able to witness that. Everything about it was flawlessly executed that I can’t say anything to fault it. It’s no secret that I’m more of a DC girl but even I have to say that Marvel smashed it here. I think it’s my favorite one to date.

Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥