First airing in 1993, spawning 24 seasons and two spin-off movies before the current release. Countless generations of kids falling in love with the characters and the zords. Bringing millions of dollars in merch sales, with each changing rerelease. Even I watched it growing up, mostly because the first season had dinosaur zords and I was a pretty dinosaur crazy kid. It is hardly a surprise with the current trend of rebooting pretty much everything as Hollywood has zero fresh intelligent ideas (which will be spawning another soapbox article later on) that we would return Power Rangers to the big screen.
As always, Rita Repulser has destroyed the last power ranger team and Zordon gives his life to send the crystals (or power centres) to find the fresh rangers. We find a group of the most unlikely friends. The jock, who blew his career on a prank and now is in Saturday makeup classes just to pass high school. With an ankle bracelet that tracks his every movement. The autistic kid that gets picked on for his habits, and knowledge. The preppy mean girl who made a mistake and turned her friends against her. The new kid that's always on the move, with a perfect family she doesn't quite fit in with as she struggles with her sexuality. The self-destructive kid who dropped out of school to take care of his sick mother.
The old abandioned gold mine at the top of town should be avoided by townsfolk. All gated off, no entry, the usual stuff. Where else would five screwed up teenagers spend their time? Exactly where they shouldn't be. Which is good for this storyline as after blowing up part of the mine, they find five strange crystals they take with them when they have to run from security. A massive car/train crash and all five wake up at home safe and well with no idea how they got there. With 'changes' to how they are, strength, speed and so on. Looking for answers, the five head back to the mine discovering an underground spaceship. Piloted by a slightly crazy very gay sounding robot called Alpha. A face in a wall called Zordon as well as a higher purpose.
Called to be the next team of Power Rangers, to go up against Rita to save the zeo crystal buried in the planet's core and save mankind. Yeah, you got it. It's the end of the world again!
This movie keeps a lot of the tackier side of the fan-verse alive, terrible monsters, tacky effects and pretty lame scripting in places. Which, let's face it, is exactly how the originals were and we still watched them! I do like that they are not just a case of OH! We are rangers now, and we know everything there is about it! They bleed, they train, they make mistakes, they crash a zord! It's 'realistic' of what you would expect from a group of people who don't know each other or how to use their powers. Fights, arguments, distrust. Before eventually coming together. I also like the fact they are not all just 'white normal kids', yet their diversity isn't shoved in your face. No, I'm the black kid or I'm the gay kid so deal with it! They are just seen as people, how it should be.
Rita is pretty amazing as well as clearly modelled after Loki in Avengers. Enough slight changes to costume, staff and attitude to see her very much as a female Loki. However, it works well. For all the fact of the cheesy storyline, you have to respect the fact that the source of all power is hidden under a Krispy Creme. Makes perfect sense to me! As does a villainess who stops mid-battle for a doughnut break. Respect girl! Villian's are always much better characters than heroes, or maybe I am just a tad weird.
Seriously though, does no one know what CPR is??!!!
And why is the green ranger ALWAYS evil?!
For all the fact I seriously didn't want to see this movie, I did find it a lot more enjoyable than I expected. Sometimes you just need a light hearted film to cheer you up. Dinosaur zords, always a plus.
Sarah Beth James