Movie Review - Power Rangers (that was not what I expected)

Synopsis (IMDB): A group of high school kids, infused with superpowers, harness their abilities in order to save the world.

To borrow a phrase from former President Obama, "Uh, let me be clear", my expectations for this movie were not high going into this. As a matter of fact, the only reason I went to see this in the theater was because I thought it was going to be horrible. I was pleasantly surprised, for the most part. As you know this movie is based on the insanely popular series that began in the 90's and is still going today. This particular movie is based on the original five rangers; Jason, Trini, Kimberly, Zack, and Billy. One of the highlights of the film to me were the actors themselves. They did a very good job showing their comradery and especially the bond between Jason and Billy. The movie does a good job of showing that each of them has their own issues but they do overcome them and you can see them start to become friends. Elizabeth Banks and Bryan Cranston as Rita and Zordon respectively, also do a good job in their roles. I especially enjoyed Banks, as for the majority of the film she played up a very different version of Rita than what people may remember. It's important to note that they did make changes in order to modernize the characters. Being completely honest that show back in the day and even the movie from 1995 was hilariously cheesy and the changes that they made work. The standout in the whole film for me was RJ Cyler as Billy. He did a great job portraying an autistic genius and the actual heart of the team. The majority of this movie is not bad, it's actually pretty decent and well written. The tone that they set up works and there are genuine moments where you feel that the Rangers are in way over their heads.

And then the last 25 minutes of the movie happened. This is where the movie completely flipped and changed the tone that they had been setting up from the beginning to give people the extreme campiness. Yes, people, they turn it into the 90's show in the last act of the movie. Complete with Banks saying the "MAKE MY MONSTER GROW" line. There is product placement for Krispy Kreme that, to me, felt a little out of place. Finally, the last battle which is shown in the trailer mind you just looks bad to me. The Megazord didn't look good. Goldar looked as if he wasn't finished. To me, it feels as if they either ran out of money or didn't have enough time to make Goldar an actual character like he was in the original series. Most of my problems came from that change of tone and just how bad the CG looked in the Goldar/Megazord fight. I understand that they had to put some stuff in there for the fans but the tone that they had started with was working too well in my opinion for them to go the route they did in the last act. If you are looking for cameos from any of the original rangers there is one for Amy Jo Johnson and Jason David Frank but it is in the last minute of the movie that you see them. I didn't see any other cameos from the original cast.

For Parents
The movie is PG-13. It's your basic superhero/action-adventure movie. There is some foul language but nothing too vulgar. They do talk about some mature themes but nothing in depth. The action is pretty good and there are a couple of scenes that have kind of a horror element to it but nothing that I think will keep the kids up. There were kids in my theater and outside of one "jump scare" scene it wasn't bad. Also, the movie is a little over two hours but the pacing is done well so you won't feel it.

Final Verdict
Outside of the last act, it was not a bad movie and it surprised me. I am going to give this a MATINEE. I can forgive that last fight if they fix it in the sequel because more than likely this movie will be getting one. Also, it's a nice little afternoon, get out of the house type movie. There is a mid-credits stinger that is kind of funny but sets up something for the sequel should it ever get greenlit. So, have you seen the movie? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments below and as always thanks for reading.


Images via IMDB

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