It is finally here!! Opening week for the new rangers we came to know and love in the 90’s and their new spin on the classic. Now I know this scares a lot of people when they hear about things being revamped for the new generation (especially us 90’s enthusiasts) – Ahhh yes! The 90’s, where everything under the sun was normal and all was good in the world – but it’s nice to reminisce about how things were during that time. I will try to keep it on pace here. The Power Rangers movie was excellent in capturing the inner ten year old I’ve had trapped in me since it was announced that the Rangers were making it back to the big screen. Without further anticipation creeping in your veins, I give you a list of my five favorite features of the movie. These are in no order what so ever. I am just happy the Rangers are back!
5.History of the Show
This was a great point the movie set out to make. Understanding the movie and its perspective is something that should always be first and the writers portrayed it very clear. The beginning starts with Zordon fighting as the Red Ranger in what looks like a complete massacre. He has lost all his rangers in the battle and is trying to recover each crystal to keep the power away from the evil Rita Repulsa. He has lost the battle, but is determined to make sure she does not lose the war. Zordon manages to collect all five crystal pieces from each Ranger just before Rita catches up to him. He sets a planned meteor strike to his location so that it takes both Rita and him out and brings us to where we start with the new Rangers. Later on in the movie, it is also explained to the teens the reason why they are becoming Rangers (which was never really expressed in the shows from what I recall). The Rangers are a group of warriors set out to protect the almighty Zeo Crystal from the harms of evil. This is how they layer the base of the setting so now people understand what their true purpose is.
This could be up for debate. I feel as though drama was super important because you are capturing the audience of a movie goer and not a show watcher (there is a difference). The five teens that play the Rangers all had different backgrounds and it was awesome how the writers added modern day issues into the equation. Jason (red) was the all-American teenager who is the pride and joy of Angel Grove. The natural born leader is loved and adored by so many, but can never seem to capture the true approval each son longs for from his father, largely because Jason can’t seem to stay out of trouble with the law. It leads to the star QB of the Angel Grove varsity football team to lose out on all of his scholarships, as scouts come to see him as he gets kicked off of the football team. Zack (black), the drifter who is always distant because of what he hides. Taking care of his ill-mother in their mobile home takes up most of his time and he is appreciative of the chance to make a difference in the world. Then we have Billy (blue) who is the typical genius nerd who has never had a backbone. Ironically, he is the first to stand up and is the reason why the team comes together due to his untimely death. Kimberly (pink) is the once popular girl turned outcast due to an unfortunate picture sent out of her former best friend. She is now shunned by the ones she used to call “sisters” and finds peace being around her new fellow warriors. Last but not least we have Trini (yellow), who doesn’t seem to fit the mold of her “perfect” family. She is the most difficult of the group to get to come around, but when she does, we begin to find that she just needed to see it’s okay to be different. Bringing these five teens together with all different backgrounds was a story line the movie needed to nail.
I know people were expecting the Rangers to come out looking like the 90’s, but for once I really liked the spin they took. CGI is a beautiful thing! First, I’d like to point out that the same shades of each color were used and I was incredibly satisfied with it. Second, I liked the definition of the new armor. Right away I notice the crystals being in place of where the “morphers” of the 90’s used to go and I’m okay with that (somewhat). New age technology gives us the luxury to make things awesome and that’s exactly what they did with the suits. The helmets were kept pretty classic, with a twist of modern. If my office ever did a “helmet day” for whatever reason, you can bet with confidence I’d be wearing the Red Ranger helmet all day. Rita’s new look is absolutely amazing. I would even say it is better than the 90’s witch-themed Rita. In order to make the series work, Saban needed to put the spin on the gear. The only critical piece I have is the way the helmets open. I could have used a little less “Iron Man” in that sense. Goldar was absolutely terrifying and I loved that. It was not needed for Goldar to really have his own commentary in the movie as he did in the shows. I like the spin they took to just have him be a figure of evil essentially coming straight from Rita.
2.Elizabeth Banks as Rita
If you have made it this far… thank you! I feel as though this actress needs her own nod in the new movie seeing how she killed the role. Rita became a new evil villain in my opinion because of how well she was portrayed by Liz Banks. In the show, she is pretty much the mastermind who sends goons to try and defeat the Rangers. Now she is the up front and center point of attack the Rangers have to get through. This was huge for me because I was beginning to wonder how they were going to fill a full movie with Rita just yelling commands to a somewhat lifeless Goldar. This might have been the best performance of Liz Banks that I can recall in recent times. Her evil intentions for universal domination were hit pretty hard. Her evolution throughout the movie was incredible as well. From being a dead “mermaid” found by a fisherman’s boat, to being the almighty sexy mistress Rita who is taking whatever she wants and putting everyone in her path down. You truly get to see her evil in this movie and that was incredible. Did I mention that she looked awesome doing so? She reminds me of the type of girl you dated because of her edge but never told your parents you dated a girl like that. Kudos for making this guy crush hard on Rita Repulsa! I truly never thought I would say this sentence as a kid. The younger me would be ashamed…
1.Action & the Welcome Back!
This had to end (unfortunately) and we have reached my last “like”. This really has not so much to do about a general topic but more so a few different points in the movie where I wanted to scream out in the theatre “IT’S MORPHIN TIME!” and join the Rangers in the endless endeavor to save Angel Grove from the evils it seems to attract. To start, I will point out the first time Jason and his team first come together. This is when Billy cons Jason into pretty much hanging with him in the mountains so that Billy can blow some stuff up (as he used to do with his now passed father). Once the big blow happens, each character comes out and they begin to see the crystals inside the cliff. This begins a huge startled scene where the crew works on their first task together by trying to get away from security, only to fail by getting into a huge car wreck vs. an oncoming train. The Rangers wake up unharmed from the accident and this is where we see they begin to realize they need to go on a journey to actually find out what happened. The second moment for me was when the team finally puts their secrets out there for the first time. We begin to understand where each teenager deals with their problems and see how each can compliment one another in one way or another. The chemistry portrayed by the characters was awesome. One last point is a bit of a nostalgia for me: when the team goes to fight Rita and Goldar in the heart of Angel Grove (and KrispyKreme), the old theme song from the 90’s we have identified with the series comes on with the Zords in synchrony. This was probably my favorite moment of the movie because not only was I grinning from ear to ear, this was the moment I realized the series was back and live. I was truly watching what made my childhood so enjoyable in 2017. As I am hitting a quarter century in this world, it humbled me to take a step back from real life, and to go back to a time where as a kid, there were no cares except for when the next Ranger episode was coming on my hitachi 50 inch box projector screen. Thank you, Saban!
Jack Pullara is your typical 90’s bro who can be found staying in on weekends, crafting up a meme war in a group chat, or just strumming some chords on an acoustic. With his new found “geekness,” he is looking to help the site reach new levels. Writing has always been a passion of his, so this was a match made in heaven. He now admits in public he has either tried to morph into a Ranger or has tried to go “Super Saiyan.”
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