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Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie - Film Review

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by Marisa Quinn-Haisu (subscribe)
My name is Marisa. I am a fiction writer, a blogger, and a freelance journalist.
Published December 12th 2018
I revisit the original Power Rangers movie from 1995
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie
The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers make their movie debut. Hasbro

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie was a 1995 film based off the wildly successful children's television show Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. It was directed by Bryan Spicer, written by Ame Olsen and featured an ensemble cast starring Jason David Frank (as Tommy the White Ranger), Amy Jo Johnson (as Kimberley the Pink Ranger), Karan Ashley (as Aisha the Yellow Ranger), Johnny Yong Bosch (as Adam the Black Ranger), David Yost (as Billy the Blue Ranger), Nicholas Bell (as Zordon), Julia Cortz (as Rita), Mark Ginther (as Lord Zedd), Paul Schrier (as Bulk), Jason Narvy (as Skull) and Paul Freeman (as the villain Ivan Ooze).

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie
I had a copy of this poster hanging in my house as a kid. Hasbro

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers tells the story of five teenagers with attitude who are chosen by a wise, powerful being called Zordon to defend the Earth. The teens are given the power to transform into a fighting force called the Power Rangers and are given mechanical assault machines called Zords to fight in. The Zords have the ability to combine into a giant humanoid machine called the Mega Zord. The kids use their new powers and abilities to fight against the evil sorceress Rita Repulsa. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was based off the Japanese TV series Super Sentai franchise. The series used a mixture of original footage shot on location in Santa Clarita and Los Angeles, California and footage and elements adapted from Sentai Zyuranger, Gosei Sentai Dairanger and Ninja Sentai Kakuranger. The Power Rangers Movie was filmed in Sydney and in Queensland Australia. Just like the television show, it was heavily influenced by Super Sentai but in a first for the franchise, it did not feature any adapted footage from the Japanese TV series.

My daughter is four and recently discovered Power Rangers on Netflix. Did you know they have over 800 episodes on there? She has been slowly making her way through all the series starting off with Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. I can remember clear as day when the Power Rangers movie came out in 1995. My siblings and I were all huge fans of the show and we were very excited. Like many young people our age at the time, we loved the movie. It's been interesting watching my daughter discover Power Rangers. The show has not aged well. The other day I had a thought… what about the movie from 1995? How has that aged and what would I think of it now as an adult? And what would my daughter think of it?

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie
The evil Ivan Oooze is a delight. Hasbro

The film starts off with the Power Rangers participating in a charity skydive over the city of Angel Grove. Later that night, workers in a construction site unearth a giant mysterious purple egg. Villains Lord Zedd, Rita Repulsa, Goldar and Mordant come down to Earth to crack the egg, releasing the charismatic Ivan Ooze. Ivan Ooze is a 6,000 year old morphological being who used to rule Earth before he was defeated by Zordon. Ivan overpowers Zedd and Rita and breaks into the Power Rangers Command centre and attacks Zordon robbing the Rangers of their powers. The Rangers teleport to an alien world called Phaedos in search of new powers and allies to help them save Zordon and the Earth from the evil Ivan Ooze. While there, they meet a Warrior Woman and an ally of Zordon called Dulcea. Dulcea grants them the power of the Ninjetti and the Rangers return to Earth with new powers and new Zords ready to do battle against Ivan.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie
Dulcea grants the rangers power of the Ninjetti. Hasbro.

Maybe it was nostalgia but I enjoyed re-watching the Power Rangers movie. It's been decades since I last saw it. It seems to have aged reasonably well. There were a few things I liked about it. The production values were not that bad and an improvement over the television show. The costumes were great. The Rangers wear armoured suits in the film. I can remember those as a kid. I thought they were awesome then and they still look good now. I would even go as far as to say as I think they look better than the re-imagined suits that appeared in the 2017 Power Rangers film.

The music was fun and very 90s. My favourite track is Devo's 'Are You Ready?' which has the line "Action Boy, Now. Action Girl, Now…" and plays during a fight scene between the Rangers and some monsters. The fight scenes were very, very silly. The Rangers perform moves that are impossible and blur the line between real karate and stuff out of Looney Tunes.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie
I love the new armoured suits the rangers wear in this film. Hasbro.

The special effects in the film were mixed. I thought the Ranger's transformations were great but their Zords looked terrible. In the show, the Zords were always little puppets that jumped and hobbled around and never looked very realistic. In the film, they animated them with computers but being 1995 the technology wasn't there yet. In 2018, the Zords look very cartoonish and very bad. It probably would have been better if they'd stuck with puppets. That saying, the designs of the new Zords weren't half bad, like Tommy's Falcon Zord which could fire bullets from the tips of its wings.

So what did my daughter think of the Power Rangers Movie?

She loved it. She gushed about it for about two days afterward non-stop. I suspect I'll probably be buying her a copy of it on DVD soon so she can watch it again. Hopefully, I'll get the theme song out of my head before she starts university.
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Why? Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie is a 1995 American super hero film based off the children’s television series Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. It was the first feature film in the Power Rangers franchise.
Where: Available for purchase on DVD and on digital download
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