Friday, March 31, 2017

You must protect the Zeo Crystal

Earth the Paleozoic era, a great battle has ensued because the Power Rangers have been betrayed by one of their own:The Green Ranger. Rita Repulsa has attacked her fellow rangers in an effort to capture the Zeo crystal of Earth and increase her powers, Zordon and his fellow rangers had attempted to stop her, but she was much too strong for them. In an effort to save the planet and the crystal Zordon grabs his fellow Rangers power coins, buries them, and has the dutiful Alpha 5 call down a meteor. This Meteor Knocks Rita into the proto ocean and obliterates all signs of the mighty battle that was fought.

Which brings us to a few weeks ago in Angel Grove, Jason the star Qb, Captain of the football team, and everybody's favorite guy is about to blow it all, for about 15 minutes of fun. That ladies and gentleman brings us to today's detention, Jason is dropped off by his dad, wearing and Ankle Bracelet and a knee brace as he is doing he is stuck paying for his crimes. On his way down to detention he passes Kimberly, a cheerleader and a cutie. When he gets downstairs he sees Billy a young autistic boy being picked on, he doesn't know Billy, really doesn't care he just doesn't truck with bullies. After backing down the young wanna be tough, he sits down not to far from Billy. Kimberly gets a text messages and asks to be excused to the bathroom, there she finds some of her cheerleader pals, who in what can only be described as a poor attempt at a mean girls impression tell her they are done with her and basically taunt her hoping she ends her life. She stairs at the scissors handed to her longingly and then makes a DRASTIC change to her appearance(well, only drastic because everybody saw her walk in with a different hair style). The three teens have nothing in common but detention, but as only fate could have it that was until this very Dark and Starry night

Power Rangers
Powers Rangers 2017 is going to catch a little heat for character building, let me tell you this these rangers can handle it. It's hard to boil a good 20 episodes of a weekly hour long afternoon TV show into a 2 hour movie but they did a very good job of it. They also gave you the Rangers Zordon was asking for way back in the early 90's. Teenagers with an attitude. Jason and Billy end up at the mountain because Billy makes Jason an offer he can't refuse, Jason and Kimberly meet up because well dumb luck and some late night cliff diving. Zack lives not far away and loves to look out over the quarry from the top of a abandoned train car, and as for Trini, that is the quietest place in the valley. First let's get it out of the way, the original power rangers team was:

  • Austin St. John-a white male as Jason Lee Scott
  • David Yost- another white male as Billy Cranston
  • Amy Jo Johnson-a white female as Kimberly Hart
  • Walter Jones- a black male as Zack Taylor
  • Thuy Trang- an Asian female as Trini Kwan
3 white kids, one black kid, one Asian kid. Jason was the red ranger, Billy the blue, Kimberly the pink, Zack the black, and Trini the yellow and all narrow minded jokes aside the auditioned for the parts the got. So lets look at the new team:
  • Dacre Montgomery- white male as Jason
  • RJ Cyler- black male as Billy
  • Naomi Scott- Indian/English female as Kimberly
  • Ludi Lin- Asian male as Zack
  • Becky G- Mexican-American female as Trini
1 white male, one half white female, a black kid, an asian kid, and a hispanic kid. Jason is still the red ranger, Billy still the blue, Kimberly still pink, Zack is back in Black, and Trini is still Yellow. It was hilarious for Zack and Billy to share the "Dude, I'm black" moment because yes it was hanging there, don't dally with it, just get it over with. It was also nice for them to visit each of the rangers personal issues- Jason is buried under a mountain of pressure as the "Natural Leader Type", Kimberly is the "perfect girl" with a dark side that she used to hide behind a sweet demeanor, Billy is on the spectrum(Autism) is he functional yes but his social cues aren't quiet there. Zack has social anxiety issues, and Trini is finding herself she is presumably gay she never said yes when she was asked but she did say she felt like her choices were a burden on her ultra normal family. Yes these kids go to the same school but they aren't INSTA Pals, they don't exactly trust each other and when they get super powers it isn't all, WOOHOO lets all have fun with these GREAT NEW ABILITIES. They were real people with real lives BEFORE they met Billy at the side of the mountain he blew up, yes they found the 5 power coins, and yes they got weird abilities that they wanted to go back to the mountain and figure out. But they had to work towards becoming and team and being friends.

I mean, let's be real here: A talking head in a wall(or Cylindrical Tube) and a quirky robot aren't really going to make most of us say "Woohoo sign me up coach, I want whatever you're selling." You are as app to get zonked by Willy Wonka as you are to get a Captain Planet power ring. So yeah they aren't immediately buying(mainly because whats being sold isn't fun but hard work, sacrifice, and potentially DEATH, did I mention DEATH), as a matter of fact the first night you aren't really sure if they are going to come back(okay, it's a movie of course they are coming back) because who are they to each other, and why should they trust a disembodied head? Plus "the Zeo Crystal" what Zeo Crystal? I never heard anybody talk about a Zeo Crystal, and why is it CONVENIENTLY in our little small podunk fishing town? Huh wise guy, can you answer that? Now of course while they are trying to figure out if they even want to accept the responsibility of being Power Rangers Rita Wakes up. Eikichi and I both agree that making Rita the Green Ranger was an awesome way to explain how she got the green power coin, it was her coin of course she still had it. It is also the power source at the center of her staff(for now) with which she creates her Putties, helps heal the damage done to her by the meteor explosion and of course helps her summon Goldar(yes Eikichi it was Goldar, even if he DIDN'T have a face).

Eikichi complained about How the Megazord was formed, I complain about how Mastodon didn't look like anything at all, it took me forever to remember what Zack's Zord was supposed to be. Sabretooth Tiger was also somewhat ambiguous, Pterodactyl was fine, as was Triceratops, and it's hard to mistake a T-rex. Zordon's origin and situation was different but I don't have a problem with that, they handled the "We aren't exactly like the TV show, cartoon, video games, or comic books" situation much better than Logan. Yes Power Rangers is darker, yes it spends more time on the kids who will BECOME the rangers than it does on the powers and suits, but honestly two things make a good hero movie: The villain and the molding of the person/people into the hero(es) they are about to become. Nobody cares about a hero who always has it easy. Especially if SUPPOSEDLY all life on the planet is in danger. And it is Hilarious where the Zeo crystal is supposedly buried(and I can't wait to see the out takes, we are betting on how many takes the lobby scene took). The Putties do look like poor versions of Benjamin J Grimm but I like that, if the rangers aren't going to be in spandex the putties can't be in spandex either. So I believe the payoff is much better because of the time it takes showing WHAT it took to make them a team, to bring them together, and to give them the will to fight Rita, save the town, AND their world. There is also one after credit scene, it's a hat tip if you are a fan of the original show you will enjoy it.

Things you won't see:

  1. The Juice Bar- they are always in detention
  2. anybodies weapon but Jason's cause I have no clue
  3. Bulk and Skull
  4. Ernie the mixologist at the Juice bar
  5. Baboo (no time for henchman)
  6. Squatt(again no time for henchman)
  7. Finster(Rita makes her own monsters, I'm sure Finster feels his would be better)
While there is a serious tone to this movie they do take time to toss in cheesy lines here and there, this is after all a movie that is MOSTLY aimed at kids or at least the kids at heart who fell in love with this show every afternoon once school was out. It has a Decent ways to go(as of 3/29 52 million) to make up it's production budget but I believe that it will have legs for at least a few more weeks. This is about to be the heart of Super Hero Movie season, so I can't see it hanging around for more than 3 or 4 weeks but that should be enough to get it over the finish line. Oh and for those wondering yes they play the theme song AT the mostly appropriate time, if you want to be a stickler you can say ummm that isn't verbatim how that is supposed to happen but I mean that is the scene pretty much.

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