Power Rangers Is A Mighty Morphin Nostalgia Trip
Ever since its US debut back in 1994, Power Rangers has been an international phenomenon that has captivated children young and old. I am sure that many, like me, remember waking up on Saturday morning to watch the latest episode of Power Rangers.
That is why many of the TV show’s original fans are both excited and cautious about the latest Power Rangers movie that is now in theaters. No one wants to see a reboot that ruins their childhood or is such a rewrite that it is nothing like the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Well, rest assured, the 2017 Power Rangers movie is a respectful homage to the original series with welcome additions to the mythos.
Power Rangers tells the story of five teenagers with attitude and their journey to become super powered heroes.
Jason (Dacre Montgomery) is the high school quarterback who does not want to be the sports star that his father wants him to be. Kimberly (Naomi Scott) is an ex-popular girl who has lost all of her friends. Billy (RJ Cyler) is a genius who is the victim of bullying and does not know how to make friends. Trini (Becky G) is the new girl and a loner whose family does not understand who she is. And Zack (Ludi Lin) is a truant high school student who spends his time hanging out in restricted areas and taking care of his sick mother. Together, these five teenagers will discover an ancient power and be chosen to protect the world from the evil Rita Repulsa (Elizabeth Banks).
Basically, Power Rangers is a typical superhero origin story, complete with training montages and an epic battle in the third act. Even though origin stories can be bit boring, especially after sitting through so many in just the past year, Power Rangers makes up for it with its endearing characters, epic battles and nostalgia.
Perhaps the most endearing characters in the movie is Billy – the Blue Ranger. Billy is smart and kind, but often bullied because he is seen as strange and awkward. The film makes it a point to show that Billy is autistic, providing representation for those with mental disabilities that is not common in superhero movies. RJ Cyler plays the character of Billy with respect and dignity, and does not make him to be some kind of jester. Billy is probably the most excited to be a Power Ranger, reflecting the desires that many fans had as children.
On the topic of representation, Power Rangers is also the first superhero movie with an openly gay superhero. Although many superheroes in comic books do represent the LGBTQIA+ community, this is the first time such a character has made an appearance in a live action movie.
Though I do applaud the movie’s cast and characters, including Bryan Cranston as Zordon, and Bill Hader as a surprisingly exceptional Alpha 5, I do have to make one criticism. Besides a training montage, the second act is very slow for a superhero movie and would have really benefited from some kind of battle. I know that the second act is used to show the characters overcome their struggles and grow closer, but for a movie based on a TV show known for action, the second act is lacking.
However, that final act with the Power Rangers battling against Rita Repulsa and her army was pure and epic nostalgia. Watching the Rangers in their Zords fighting the giant monster, Goldar, will hit everyone with memories of watching Power Rangers as kids.
If you are a student looking for a break from studying and wanting to enjoy a fun time down memory lane, definitely consider checking out Power Rangers. Already, fans are looking forward to a sequel to this “Mighty Morphin” adventure.