Based on the 1993 television series Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, this big screen update sees a group of teenager outsiders taught to work together in order to become the Power Rangers – a colour-coded super group with incredible powers, strength, and equipped with their own armour and mechanical companions called Zords.
Keeping with tradition, the film recruits relatively unknown actors to play the fantastic five: Dacre Montgomery as Jason the Red Ranger, Naomi Scott as Kimberly the Pink Ranger, RJ Cyler as Billy the Blue Ranger, Ludi Lin as Zack the Blue Ranger, and singer Becky G. as Trini the Yellow Ranger.
Long ago, when dinosaurs walked the earth, a team of Power Rangers – led by Bryan Cranston’s Red Ranger Zordon – protected a crystal that contained the life force of the planet. The Green Ranger, Rita Repulsa, was a member of Zordon’s team until she betrayed them, coveting the crystal for personal gain. Zordon hid his team’s gems, which allowed them to morph into the Power Rangers, in the hope that they would one day be rediscovered by a new and worthy team.
It’s the aforementioned teens from Angel Grove that rise to the challenge. Under the guidance of Zordon and his trusty robot assistant Alpha 5 (Bill Hader), these fledgling Rangers must train to protect the Earth from Elizabeth Banks’s terrifying Rita Repulsa and her golden minion, Goldar, who have returned to claim the crystal. It’s morphin’ time!
Power Rangers dutifully captures the essence of the show many will fondly remember from their childhood. But that’s not necessarily a good thing, given the series was rather average and cheesy to begin with (but still kind of loveable).
While the movie succeeds in upping the quality of the visual effects and the Ranger suit designs (and equally as important, the robotic Zords), it doesn’t do much to enhance the story, which worked better in the 20-minute episode format.
Reimagined as a coming-of-age tale in superhero clothing, Power Rangers should satisfy newcomers, however longtime series fans will be left feeling a little shortchanged.
In cinemas: March 23, 2017
Starring: Dacre Montgomery, Bryan Cranston, Becky G.
Directed by: Dean Israelite