Movie Review: Power Rangers
If you spend any time listening to our weekly podcast, The Shotlist, then it’s no secret that I was not looking forward to the newest Power Rangers movie. I grew up in the 90’s where the Power Rangers were popular figures and frequent Halloween costumes, but admittedly, I never bought in to the hype. Even as a kid, I apparently found the franchise to be too cheesy; I became a tough critic fairly early in life. Shows like Wishbone had set my expectations pretty high apparently. Nevertheless, I still found myself in a seat in the theater on Friday for this film franchise I cared nothing about.
As the first few minutes of the movie started, though, I quickly found myself sucked in as Zordon buried what are apparently called power coins in the ground and sacrificed himself in an attempt to save the planet and take out Rita Repulsa. From there they move into present times where the coins are rediscovered by a group of teenagers who seem to be an unlikely bunch. They quickly realize that they are different and much stronger after their encounter with the coins, and it takes little time for them to meet up with Alpha 5 and Zordon, who are able to explain what they are and their purpose. From there, they must journey together to became a team and prepare to face a villain that they are woefully unprepared to battle.
I’m sure for the average Power Rangers fan they are probably balking at my quaint synopsis. I’ve been told there are a lot of callbacks to the original material, but to be honest, I wouldn’t know about that. What I do know is that I found this to be a fun, entertaining movie. I thought the chemistry between the kids was fantastic, and the five of them truly made the movie. They quickly captured the plight of every character, and it was sweet to watch them push past their own issues to come together as a team. Also, if you’re not in love with the blue ranger by the end of the story, I’ll be genuinely shocked.
Of course, I did have some complaints. I did not love Elizabeth Banks as the titular villain, Rita Repulsa. Every time she came on screen, I felt a little pulled out of the story. I also felt like her look and costuming harkened back to the cheesy beginnings of the material that I did not love as a kid. I also had a few issues with some of the developments at the end of the film, and I personally could have done without all the 90's “mighty morphin’” comments. However, once again, this comes from someone who is not a fan of the source material. Overall, I found this film to be fun and heartwarming at times. They had a steady thread of humor throughout the film, which added even more to my enjoyment. It’s not often that I’m pleasantly surprised by a film, but I must say I was with Power Rangers. If you haven’t seen it yet, I encourage you to help make their upcoming week at the box office a success.