An origin movie about the Power Rangers should not be this good. I’m serious. It’s a fun, cheesy, surprisingly emotional ride! Click through to read my full review
‘Power Rangers‘ is the story of five teenagers that come into contact with ancient alien technology and are trained to protect the world. The teens are all misfits in one way or another. There’s Jason (Dacre Montgomery), the football star who wants to be more than just being the small town sports hero; Billy (RJ Cyler), a kid with mild autism who suffers from being bullied; Kimberly (Naomi Scott) a cheerleader who is on the outside of her friend circle; Trini (Becky G), a new girl who feels like she doesn’t fit in; and Zack (Ludi Lin), an adrenaline junkie who also serves as caregiver for his sick mother. After finding their Power Coins they begin to have supernatural abilities which leads them to Alpha 5 (Bill Hader) and Zordon (Bryan Cranston) who begin to train them to become the Power Rangers to protect the world from Rita Repulsa (Elizabeth Banks).
I’m going to start by saying that I am a massive Power Rangers fan. Before I had comics, Star Wars, or sports I had the Power Rangers. It holds a very special place in my heart. So, this movie had an unfair start on my end which works to its’ advantage and disadvantage. And my expectations were met for the most part. Zordon is kind of a dick to the Rangers the whole movie which really bothered me. He’s supposed to be this one that inspires them and gives them guidance, but instead he’s cold and aggressive. And the tone would kind of change from scene to scene at certain points. The first act of the movie is a little slow, but it begins to pick up once all of the Rangers are finally introduced to us. The second is act is easily the strongest part of the movie and actually connected with me on some emotional levels that I was not anticipating in the slightest. And the third act definitely becomes the crazy action and kind of just becomes a slug-fest which I was perfectly fine with because I want to see my Rangers kick some ass.
But, any scene that had the Rangers together was incredible. Where the movie truly succeeds is giving the Rangers more than just their normal title (popular jock, popular cheerleader, nerd, outsider one, wild one). For example, Billy is on the spectrum and Trini is trying to come to terms with her sexuality, but that is not what defines them in the slightest. What truly defines all of the Rangers is what is on the inside. Who they truly are as a person. Which I can’t say that I’ve seen done successfully in a while. They aren’t even allowed to morph until they are all able to put everyone else before themselves. To truly care about others. And RJ Cyler, who plays the Blue Ranger, is an absolute scene stealer! He plays Billy with such sensitivity and heart that he becomes the soul of what a Power Ranger should be. That guy will be a huge star.
Honestly, I hated how good it was. I was thinking it was just going to be a Chronicle ripoff and some soap opera stuff like a CW TV show. But, I’ll be damned if the actors that play our 5 heroes didn’t blow me away. We got a full movie with characters that had depth and I actually cared about and related to. I’ve been like Jason; screwed up big time and got in deep shit with my parents. I’ve been Billy; a little eccentric and picked on. I’ve been Trini; trying to figure out how to be who I am while moving to so many different schools every year. I’ve been Kimberly; done something super shitty and lost a friend or two in the process. And Zack; put on a bit of a front to not show what’s really going on in my head. And I think everyone can relate to all 5 of those on some level.
Maybe it’s just my inner-child? Maybe it’s me tired of the “Dark Knight-esque” reboot of my childhood content? Or maybe it was my theater that was packed with a bunch of 20-somethings like myself that were just as into the movie as I was? But, other than tiny nitpicks and some tonal issues, I can’t find anything that is truly wrong with it to give it a bad review. I hope they make more of these because I legitimately do want to spend more time with these characters. Go-Go see the movie with an open mind and I can guarantee you will have fun!
‘Power Rangers‘ is directed by Dean Israelite and opens in theaters March 24th