It’s been the better part of twenty-four years since Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers first popped up on our screen, and despite the franchise taking a bit of a dip in quality, it still has a massive fan following. So when it was first announced back in 2014 that Lionsgate would be joining producer Haim Saban in bringing us a modern revamp of this classic show, you can bet that fans were left with a sense of both excitement and scepticism. Well now that the film is finally here, we can take away all preconceptions and fears as the cast and crew deliver a movie that, despite not being perfect, will captivate fans both new and old.
Dean Israelite is the director that’s given the task of reinventing this classic franchise, and working off a script written by John Gatins he doesn’t do a bad job. Opening things in a bold, explosive way that explains Zordon (Bryan Cranston) and Rita Repulsa’s (Elizabeth Banks) history, the creative team quickly slow things down, introducing the Rangers in a methodical manner. Now ultimately this proves to be a good decision, but at the same time it doesn’t half slow the movie down. That said, when the Rangers were in their full glory, zords and all, it didn’t half make up for this methodical pace.
The standout feature of this movie, for me, was the talent of our cast, with both the seasoned cast members and young Rangers doing a sensational job in their respective roles. Naturally it was the latter that stole the show, with the rebellious, yet leader like qualities of Jason (Dacre Montgomery), socially awkward, yet extremely intelligent nature of Billy (RJ Cyler), atoning ways of Kimberly (Naomi Scott), initial loner like attitude of Trini (Becky G) and craziness of Zack (Ludi Lin) bringing a diverse tone to this team. What makes all this work so beautifully, however, is the chemistry that forms between these relative strangers, with their eventual friendship and loyalty adding depth to the action sequences later in the film. In addition to this, we get a solid, yet stern performance from Bryan Cranston as Zordon, with the more serious like nature of his character being complimented perfectly by the comic timing of Bill Hader as Alpha 5.
One of the main concerns I had going into this film was Rita Repulsa, as despite Elizabeth Banks being a good actress, the look just didn’t feel right. Well I have to admit that I couldn’t be more wrong with that, as despite being vastly different from the TV series, the actress brought a unique blend of crazy with it suiting the overall tone and style of this reboot. Despite this there was one villain that disappointed me, Goldar. Though the idea of him being made of gold was intriguing, the design was ultimately too plain with there being little character to this classic henchman. That said the fight between Goldar and the Power Rangers did make up for this, with the use of the zords adding tons of nostalgia.
Power Rangers is far from perfect, but it’s certainly a movie that fans both old and new will enjoy. Giving us some tremendous action, beautiful CGI and a fantastic cast, this movie lays the foundation for the future of this franchise, being well deserving of a sequel.
(7 / 10)