'Power Rangers' Is A Wonderful Retelling of the Original Series
To start off I'm a fan of the original Power Rangers series. I have enjoyed many of its various seasons. Especially during my childhood. I went into this movie thinking that I was going to hate it (the photos and trailers did nothing for me.) I thought for sure I was going to write a negative review here on Cultjer.
I was wrong.
I was way wrong. This adaption of the Power Rangers was brilliant. They took key elements and improved them. They basically modernized the Power Rangers. The movie was sharp and witty. Yet the film boasted impressive action sequences. The action sequences were perfectly timed.
The opening scene really helped the audience understand Zordon. Most people who even watched Power Rangers never understood his significance. Also the twist of Rita Repulsa being the first green ranger!
The five heroes we meet are essentially Breakfast Club characters on steroids. I'm just glad the film didn't go in the direction like the Breakfast Club. Yet the writers did a fantastic job with the character development. Often in Hollywood they make high school seem like this "perfect world" where we have all these groups but most of the time that's not the case. All the issues the characters were dealing with are real life issues that happen in high schools. Like Jason losing his chance to play football over a dumb prank, Kimberly for being a mean girl and sexting a photo of a girl, and we got Billy Cranston blowing up his lunch box. A issue that happens in high schools more often then not.
The other two rangers have to deal with issues. Zack has to take care of his dying mother. Trini feels like an outcast as she moves all the time. I give the writers props for using real life issues.
Fans of the original series were probably worried about the Breakfast Club twist. I know I was afraid of it. Also that Zordon was secretly scheming in the background. A development that could be used in the sequels. Zordon doesn't even have any evil in him. So that's why that scene caught me off guard. They did change up some classic Power Rangers points but for the most part they got it right.
There were plenty of exciting moments in this film. I would like to take some time to talk about some of the creative moments. How the team discovered the morphers. Ironically by Billy Cranston playing in the restricted mine area. This leads the group of five on an adventure. They all get super powers basically and they decide the next day to check out the area again. I liked how they had to swim down to the command chamber to get inside. That was a neat touch. Also the fake death of Billy Cranston was great creative writing. The writers didn't take the cliche or easy way out. Zordon had to sacrifice coming back to life to save Billy's.
The casting for the Rangers were great. Naomi Scott was a fantastic Pink Ranger. Dacre Montgomery played a good Jason. Becky G played Trini. I enjoyed her incarnation of the character. Ludi Lin plays Zack Taylor, the daredevil of the group. Then finally we got the Blue Ranger RJ Cyler who had great comedic lines throughout the film. Cyler for me stole the show.
Elizabeth Banks was fine as Rita Repulsa. There is room for improvement in my opinion. Maybe it was because we didn't get to see a lot of Rita.
The costuming of the rangers was really cool. I liked how the suits looked on them. They were futuristic yet still reminded me of the original show. The megazord was really well done. Dean Israelite really made this film enjoyable. This is the one unexpected blockbuster you have to see.
Before the film even released it was reported that Lionsgate was planning several sequels to the Power Rangers. I hope they still move forward with the sequel plans. They definitely teased a sequel at the end of the film. It was a wonderful mid-credit scene. Where the teacher was calling the name "Tommy Oliver", for all of you that don't know. Tommy Oliver is the Green Ranger. His career as ranger starts off by being controlled by Rita Repulsa (possible sequel plot). He finally abandons Rita's control and joins the real Rangers, Soon his Green Ranger powers run dry and he becomes the White Ranger. The introduction of Tommy Oliver will be cool. It also introduces another plot into the fold. In the series Tommy Oliver and Kimberly Hart are a thing. While during this film, Jason Scott has flirtations with Kimberly. Then we have Trini (who is the first LGBT Power Ranger) who definitely and subtly had flirtations with Kimberly.
YEAH WE'RE GETTING A FREAKING POWER RANGERS LOVE SQUARE.
I'm honestly all for it. In more recent news, Comicbook is reporting that the cast wants Tommy Oliver to be a female. "So they could be even." I don't think that would be the smartest idea. As Tommy Oliver is already a beloved character in Power Rangers history. No need to get the cult Power Rangers fans mad.
I was also glad that they mentioned the Zeo crystal. (The second season of Power Rangers is called Power Rangers: ZEO and they get even cooler costumes. )
The film didn't ruin my childhood. This should be a prime example for Hollywood when doing adaptions. Also hearing "Go Go Power Rangers" was a nice touch. This was a retelling gone right. This film has me intrigued and I can't wait to see what the future holds for this group of rangers.
Lionsgate bring on the sequels!