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Power Rangers: A fresh, contemporary re-telling of the classic

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions stated in this article DO NOT necessarily reflect those of Jack TV and Solar Entertainment

 

First off, full disclosure; the author is a huge fan of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (MMPR) television series in the (ehem, ehem) early 1990s.

Now that we have that out of the way, on with the review.

Prior to #JackTV’s special advanced screening last March 21 at Glorietta 4 Cinema 2, I really didn’t put much into the Power Rangers movie remake because, you know, do-over films, in my opinion, do not live up to par with the original ones. I also have this knack of not divulging into too much information to upcoming remakes just so it will have that element of surprise once I get to watch it on the big screen.

About an hour before the showing, I had a chat with an officemate regarding how the 2017 movie will stack up compared to the 90’s MMPR , and told him that I will lower my expectations to avoid bigger disappointment.

Right off the bat, I believe one of the strengths of Power Rangers is that it did a great job introducing the main story to both the fans of the original TV series and those who have yet to immerse themselves with the Toei franchise.  The characterization of the main protagonists, namely Jason Scott (Red Ranger), Zack (Black Ranger), Billy Cranston (Blue Ranger), Trini (Yellow Ranger), and Kimberly Hart (Pink Ranger), mainly stick to the original, although with some tweaks to keep up with the changing times.

Take for example, in what I view as the film’s breakout character, Billy, the Blue Ranger. If you were to overanalyse the color he represents, blue stands for purity and wisdom.

In the TV series, he was the “behind the scenes” guy; the one that ties up the loose ends, and being armed with intelligence, you can brand as the “brains of the operation.”

David Yost, the 90’s MMPR Blue Ranger, was, early in the show, portrayed as the stereotypical “nerd.” In the 2017 film however, Mr. Cranston is introduced as, uhm, let’s just say, a much more unpredictable, peculiar individual. And to everyone’s surprise, Billy has a rather unique sense of humor.

(On a sidenote, don’t you think it’s cool that Billy will have the opportunity to interact with Zordon, portrayed by the smooth, badass Bryan Cranston?)

I can go on and compare the rest of the Rangers with their 90s counterparts but I will leave that out since this is a review and not a play-by-play article. LOL.

Anyways, going back to my point of keeping things fresh, the audience, specifically, the 90’s MMPR fans, based on my observation during the premiere night, even though they have a pretty good idea on what the main story arc is and how things will unfold, is still invested in witnessing the story progress (much like another movie released last week, the remake of Beauty and the Beast). You have to give credit to the writers on how Power Rangers’ screenplay was executed.

Perhaps this was most evident in the film’s climactic battle scene; the good versus evil, heroes against all odds to save the day motif. If this was the 1990s, it is almost certain that fans are just waiting for that “Let’s vault in!” moment (shoutout to another heroic quintet out there) where the Rangers (and their always cool Zords) join forces, easily overpower the opposition, all while the theme song is playing in the background (haha) and conquer the day. This was not the case in Power Rangers 2017. It was a good balance of the heroes and villains exchanging blows and momentum in order to impose their will over the other. Clashes weren’t too cartoonish/childish so to speak (akin to Marvel Cinematic Universe movies sequences).

 

As mentioned earlier, I didn’t know much about this film so I especially loved the latter parts of the film when it had some surprises here and there.

And oh, speaking of which, do stay until the mid-credits. Any Power Rangers fan wouldn’t want to miss that tidbit! It will leave you wanting for more!  

 

I was so full of joy with how the movie went, that by the end of it, I shouted “YES!” in approval, much like everyone in attendance at the cinema.

All in all, I’d definitely recommend seeing the movie, both to the 90’s babies (can we still use that word to describe today’s millennials?) and the younger generation. And if you were to ask me, this was certainly a lot better than The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers movie of 1995.

 

RATING: 4 out of 5

 

The #PowerRangersMovie is #NowPlaying in theaters nationwide.