Saban’s Power Rangers is a weird nostalgic callback for kids of the early 90s, but as with most modern reboots of older properties everything is dark and gritty. Apparently the rest of Hollywood hasn’t heard that Marvel has made it possible to have color and brightness while also being “adult.” The darkness of it all might also put off some younger viewers and was somewhat unexpected.
The best thing about this movie is the characters. While they aren't all as equally fleshed out, they are mostly all well done. Billy Cranston (played by RJ Cyler) is definitely the standout. Billy, in the version, is an autistic genius, but never feels like a caricature of either one of those traits. He acts with subtlety and boldness that is incredibly likable. You also get to see some of the motivations for all the characters. Not all to the same degree but enough to see and understand their personal stake in it all. They even do the cliché campfire bonding scene, but you get just enough to feel them understanding each other and adding to the group dynamic. The group had a lot of chemistry and fit very well together. Everyone made sense and had a purpose so their team felt real. When the movie finally let them morph it brought back a lot of the nostalgia for the show. They did an awesome job of culminating the final battle with the forming of the megazord (an inevitability for anyone familiar with the show) and it felt good. Most of the updates felt on par with similar things done in other movies in regards to revamped properties. Everything was more “techie” (Zordon, zords, and the ranger’s armor) or more sexy (Rita's costume) but didn't feel completely out of place in the world they created. It must also be said that it's incredibly fun to see Alpha 5 beat down a mini hologram putty warrior.
This movie isn't without its flaws though. It took way too long for them to actually morph into the rangers. For a movie that is just a bit over two hours you only see them suited up for about twenty minutes. It's like having a Hulk movie and he only hulks out at the very end. No one wants to walk into this movie wanting to see the minimum amount of them actually being rangers. The dialogue can also be jarring. As much as they modernized Elizabeth Banks as Rita, she has some of the weirdest and cheesiest dialogue of all time. It is very out place and fits more of the old show than this new universe. It's also worth mentioning that the film obviously received massive amounts of money from Krispy Kreme because it's said no less than five thousand times toward the end of the movie. That might be an exaggeration but could also be on the low side.
Power Rangers is a fun film with plenty of good parts, but when it is bad, it is down right awful. The upside is that the sequels won't have the problem of them not morphing since it is now established. Plus the end hint of Tommy as the Green Ranger made my inner eight-year-old scream with delight.
31 Alpha 5 hologram putty fights out of 50. (62%)