Friday, June 10, 2016

My Concerns For The Upcoming MMPR Movie

Yeah, I know I'm retreading some old ground here. We are in an era where Hollywood has been capitalizing more and more on nostalgic properties. Most people know how Hollywood and Michael Bay have treated Transformers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. What exactly could this mean for the MMPR movie? Bear in mind that I have been avoiding any plot-related news so as to not influence my opinion before it even comes out.
Let me just begin by saying that Power Rangers nostalgia is a little different for me. My nostalgic attachment has to do more with the franchise as a whole than a single season. I started watching when MMPR first aired and I was two years old at the time. I grew up with the franchise and in a sense, it has been a part of me my entire life. Even now I get this sense of child-like wonderment and excitement when a season of Power Rangers gets announced. Its sort of why Megaforce and Super Megaforce were such a big blow for me. Its why it made me question my place in the fandom. That is to give you a decent idea of where I'm coming from with this post.

With that being said, lets get into the real meat of this. In my opinion, there are two main hurdles in adapting a nostalgic property. One is modernizing it for the current audience. The other is which audience do you try the most to appeal to: The mainstream audience or the fans? Mighty Morphin Power Rangers is a very 90's show. I don't think it would've honestly worked if it hadn't been made then. They definitely need to change up some stuff to appeal to a modern audience. There is also a high chance that they'll try to appeal more to the mainstream audience as well because that is where the big money is. This is unfortunately where my fears start to creep in. I'm sort of worried that they'll try to water down an already basic show like MMPR to be consumed by a more mainstream audience.

Ok so once you've got the audience in your sights, what do you do now? You find ways to reel in some of the fans which in this case is probably going to be anyone who was born or grew up in the 90's. Reportedly, the tone of the movie is going to be "mature yet playful". That worries me because I know Hollywood's definition of mature, I know the mainstream's definition of it, and I've got a gut feeling what the definition of it is for some of the fans they'll try to pull in. The fans I'm referring to make up a decent amount of those who stopped watching after MMPR. In other words, a good chunk of the fans that Power/Rangers appealed to. The ones who want to see the show become dark and gritty. Yeah that is kind of an extreme example but I sort of get the feeling that it will be similar. Its that place where I think there is a little bit of overlap between the two audiences. It worries me because well, I don't think Power Rangers is that suited to going that route. I loved RPM but even it had enough light-hearted moments to balance out the backdrop of the show.
Now for the visuals that have been released so far. I'm particularly referring to the new Rita design and the movie ranger suits. I'll talk about Rita's costume first. I think they over modernized it to the point where I'd see it in a generic fantasy movie. Yeah I get that the reasoning behind it is probably to tie it into the green ranger stuff but it feels off to me. Though I do like the finger-blades and the make-up around the eyes. They really sell the "evil witch" idea.
This was the best image I could find.
The ranger suits however, I think they missed the mark a bit. They looked a little too Ironman-ish for my tastes at first. The set photos however look a lot better because you can actually see the detailing but its a shame that the white portions will probably be over-layed with CGI. Overall, I still think they are a little too detailed and they look too much power armor-y but its not as bad as that first photo to me. Though I am sort of dreading what an updated Alpha will look like, assuming they don't cut Alpha from the movie altogether.

With all that being said, the worst case scenario I can see for this is that it ends up like Bay's Transformers. In other words, a bland or boring dark-ish action movie with lots of explosions. I don't think Bulk and Skull as we know them will be in the movie as their style of comedy doesn't fit the tone the movie is going for. If they are in the movie, the worst-case scenario is Michael Bay style comedic relief. They will probably be using some nostalgia bait to bring in the actual fans. Though another cause for concern I have is that Lionsgate is already considering 5 to 7 sequels. The movie isn't even close to being out yet. They should probably have waited to see how it does before this. Power Rangers is a niche tv show that hasn't had a movie in over 20 years. I don't exactly see this movie failing at the box office because nostalgia is a big seller and targeting the mainstream is a good way to make the budget back. However, if it does somehow fail, it could sink their current plans and maybe sink the idea of a Power Rangers movie franchise in general. Even though I'm going into this with so many reservations, I really hope the movie isn't bad because well, I'd honestly like to see more Power Rangers movies down the road.


  1. The suits feel like something I'd see in a Guyver movie. Plus you'd think they go with a similar suit like Ant-Man's.

    But Zordon's casting might help this movie be bearable a bit.

    On another note, what are your opinions on the upcoming Shin Gojira movie?

    1. I don't really have any opinions on the new Gojira movie. I'm not that big a Gojira fan.