Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie is a 1995 American superhero film. It stars the ensemble cast of Karan Ashley, Johnny Yong Bosch, Steve Cardenas, Jason David Frank, Amy Jo Johnson, and David Yost alongside the villains cast from the original series and Paul Freeman as Ivan Ooze. Much like the television season that followed the release, it used concepts from the Japanese Super Sentai series Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger, Gosei Sentai Dairanger and Ninja Sentai Kakuranger. It is the first Power Rangers production from Saban Entertainment not to feature any archived footage from Super Sentai. It is the first installment in the Power Rangers film series. The film was released in between the second and third seasons of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, but is incompatible with season three, which provides a different explanation for the Rangers gaining their Ninja Ranger powers and Ninjazords, indicating they are set in different continuities.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie
Theatrical release poster
Directed byBryan Spicer
Screenplay byArne Olsen
Story by
  • John Kamps
  • Arne Olsen
Based onKyōryū Sentai Zyuranger
Gosei Sentai Dairanger
Ninja Sentai Kakuranger
by Toei Company
Power Rangers
by Haim Saban
Shuki Levy
Produced by
Starring
CinematographyPaul Murphy
Edited byWayne Wahrman
Music byGraeme Revell
Production
companies
Distributed by20th Century Fox
Release date
  • June 30, 1995 (1995-06-30)
Running time
96 minutes[2]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$15 million[citation needed]
Box office$66.4 million[3]

Filming took place in and around Bombo Quarry and Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. This film was released June 30, 1995 and grossed $66.43 million worldwide,[3] but received mixed reviews from critics. The critics praised its action sequences and performances, but felt that the film was nothing more than a longer episode of the series with better special effects, pointing to the plot and screenplay as the main faults.

Plot edit

The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers participate with Bulk and Skull in a charity skydive for the Angel Grove observatory, in anticipation of Ryan's Comet which is scheduled to pass by in two days. Bulk and Skull miss the target landing zone and accidentally land at a construction site where a giant purple egg has been unearthed. Zordon then summons the Rangers, and tells them of Ivan Ooze, an evil morphological being who ruled Earth 6,000 years ago, before he was lured into a hyper-lock chamber and buried deep underground by Zordon and a group of young warriors. Zordon sends the Rangers to the construction site to return the egg to its chamber, before it is opened. However, Lord Zedd, Rita Repulsa, Goldar and Mordant arrive at the construction site first, and crack open the egg, releasing Ivan Ooze. The Rangers confront Ivan, who unleashes Oozemen on them. While the Rangers defeat the Oozemen, Ivan escapes and lays siege to the Command Center, incapacitating Zordon, and robbing the Rangers of their powers. At the destroyed Command Center, Zordon, being outside his time warp, starts aging and dying.

Zordon's assistant Alpha 5 sends the Rangers on a quest to the planet Phaedos to obtain the Great Power and save Zordon. On the Moon, Rita is initially dismayed that the Rangers escaped Ivan unharmed. However, Ivan usurps her and Zedd, shrinking and trapping them in a snow globe, and forces Goldar and Mordant to be his servants. He then sends his Tengu warriors to Phaedos and begins building an army. He uses children to bring his ooze to their parents, and it hypnotizes them into becoming his workforce to dig up his Ecto-Morphicons, twin war machines built during his reign. After finding his father working at the construction site, Fred Kelman, a friend of the Rangers, figures out Ivan's plans.

On Phaedos, the Rangers are almost killed by the Tengu but are rescued by Dulcea, the planet's Master Warrior. Dulcea initially tells the Rangers to leave for their safety, but after hearing of Zordon's plight, she agrees to help and takes them to an ancient temple where they will have to overcome obstacles to acquire the power of the Ninjetti. Dulcea awakens each Rangers' animal spirit; Aisha is the bear, Rocky is the ape, Billy is the wolf, Kimberly is the crane, Adam is the frog, and Tommy is the falcon. Upon being asked if she could join them, Dulcea reveals that she would begin to age as rapidly as Zordon is if she leaves the temple. She then shapeshifts into an owl to preserve her age. The Rangers make their way to the Monolith housing the Great Power, using their wits to defeat a live fossilized dinosaur skeleton and the temple's Stone Gargoyle guardians. They retrieve the Great Power, restoring their Ranger suits.

On Earth, Ivan's Ecto-Morphicons are completely unearthed, and he unleashes them on Angel Grove, ordering the parents to walk off a cliff at the construction site. Fred recruits Bulk, Skull, and the other kids, who head to the construction site to save their parents. The Rangers return with their new animal-themed Ninja Zords and, after a struggle, destroy one of Ivan's Ecto-Morphicons, Scorpitron. Ivan takes control of Hornitor and battles the Rangers, who combine their Zords to form the Ninja Megazord and later the Ninja Mega Falconzord. Meanwhile, the kids push the parents back while Fred, with help from Bulk and Skull, sprays them with water. The Rangers lure Ivan into space and knock him into the path of Ryan's Comet, which destroys him. Ivan's death breaks his spell on the parents, who are reunited with their children. At the Command Center, the Rangers are distraught to find Zordon has died. Without giving up hope, they use the Great Power to restore the Command Center and resurrect Zordon, returning him to his time warp. Everything returns to normal as a celebration is held at Angel Grove's Harbor in honor of the Power Rangers.

In a mid-credits scene, Goldar lounges on Zedd's throne, being served by Mordant, only to panic when Zedd and Rita appear, having been released after Ivan's death.

Cast edit

Voices

Soundtrack edit

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie: Original Soundtrack Album
 
Soundtrack album by
Various Artists
ReleasedJune 8, 1995 (1995-06-08)
Recorded1994-1995
Length49:53
Label
Producer
  • Happy Walters (exec)
  • Pilar McCurry (exec)
Singles from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie: Original Soundtrack Album
  1. "Go Go Power Rangers"
    Released: May 30, 1995
  2. "Trouble"
    Released: July 18, 1994

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie: Original Soundtrack Album is the licensed soundtrack to the film. It was released by Fox Records and Saban Records on June 8, 1995, on Audio CD and Compact Cassette.[5]

Despite several of the songs heard in the movie being well known and older, the album featured the highest profile musical talent the series had been associated with up until that point. The music of Van Halen, They Might Be Giants, Devo, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Roxette, Dan Hartman, and Buckethead was used throughout the film. The single released to promote the soundtrack was Shampoo's Trouble, although the commercials for the film used both this and Snap's hit "The Power".

Track list edit

  1. The Power Rangers Orchestra – "Go Go Power Rangers"
  2. Red Hot Chili Peppers – "Higher Ground"
  3. Shampoo – "Trouble"
  4. Devo – "Are You Ready?!"
  5. Snap! – "The Power" produced by Snap!
  6. Fun Tomas (featuring Carl Douglas) – "Kung Fu Dancing"
  7. Van Halen – "Dreams"
  8. Dan Hartman – "Free Ride"
  9. They Might Be Giants – "SenSurround"
  10. Power Jet – "Ayeyaiyai" (Alpha Song)
  11. Graeme Revell – "Firebird"
  12. Aaron Waters (The Mighty Raw) – "Cross My Line" (Bonus Track)

Additional artists edit

"The Power Rangers Orchestra" consisted of Eric Martin of Mr. Big, renowned studio guitarist Tim Pierce, John Pierce of Pablo Cruise on bass, singer-pianist Kim Bullard, and Matt Sorum of Guns N' Roses and Velvet Revolver on drums.[note 1] The solo on the track "Firebird" is performed by Buckethead.[note 1]

Original score edit

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie: Original Motion Picture Score
 
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedJune 6, 1995 (1995-06-06)[6]
Recorded1994-1995
Length35:24
LabelVarèse Sarabande
ProducerGraeme Revell
Robert Townson (exec)

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie: Original Motion Picture Score is the soundtrack of the score to the movie, released by Varèse Sarabande on June 6, 1995, on Audio CD and Compact Cassette. This release features most of the film score by composer Graeme Revell, except for the track called Firebird which he performed along with guitarists Carl Verheyen and Buckethead; this was included in the film's previous soundtrack. The score was performed by the West Australian Symphony Orchestra with orchestrator Tim Simonec conducting.

Track list edit

  1. Prologue
  2. Ivan Ooze
  3. The Great Power/Ninja Power
  4. The Tengu's Attack
  5. Zordon is Dying
  6. The Rangers on Phaedos
  7. Dulcea to the Rescue
  8. Journey to the Plateau
  9. Summoning the Ninjetti/Ninja Ranger
  10. Jurassic Ride
  11. The Monolith
  12. Battle With the Gatekeepers
  13. Metamorphicons Confront the Rangers
  14. The Megazord Battle
  15. Leap to Our Doom
  16. Power Rangers Triumph
  17. Freddy to the Rescue
  18. Zordon is Saved

Personnel edit

  • Produced by Graeme Revell
  • Executive Producer: Robert Townson
  • Music Orchestrated and Conducted by Tim Simonec
  • Additional Orchestrations by Ken Kugler, Larry Kenton and Mark Gasbarro
  • Performed by the West Australian Symphony Orchestra
  • Music Scoring Mixer: Dan Wallin
  • Assisted by Malcolm Luker
  • Music Editor: Josh Winget

Release edit

Theatrical edit

The film was released on June 30, 1995, by 20th Century Fox.

Marketing edit

Family entertainment center chain Discovery Zone promoted the release of the film by giving away Power Rangers Wrist Activators (with 33 messages) to customers who bought a Discovery Zone Summer Power Pass. Discovery Zone also gave away one of six Power Rangers Movie Challenge cards for free during each visit. This promotion lasted the entire summer.[7]

Home media edit

The film was released on VHS and LaserDisc in late 1995 and then as a double feature with 1997's Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie on a double-sided DVD in 2001 by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. Bonus features included a theatrical trailer and a "Making Of" featurette. The film was then released separately on a single-sided DVD in 2003.

The film was re-released with different packaging on DVD in 2011. The film was then re-released in 2017 in a bundled set with Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie (this time as two single-sided DVD discs) to coincide with the reboot film Power Rangers.

On May 9, 2018, it was announced that Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie would be released on Blu-ray for the first time by Shout! Factory as an extra disc included in their 25th anniversary DVD steelbook box set of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers TV series.[8] Shout! Factory released a stand-alone Blu-ray Disc on June 4, 2019.[9]

Reception edit

Box office edit

In its opening weekend, the film earned $17 million, coming in fourth behind Apollo 13, Pocahontas, and Batman Forever.[10] It ultimately grossed $66.4 million against a $15 million budget,[citation needed] making it a financial success.[3]

Critical response edit

On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 32% of 37 critics gave the film a positive review, with an average rating of 4.4/10. The site's critics consensus reads, "For better and for worse -- too often the latter -- Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie captures the thoroughly strange aesthetic of the television series that inspired it."[11] Metacritic gave the film a weighted average score of 40 out of 100, based on reviews from 21 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[12] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A–" on an A+ to F scale.[13]

Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times thought it was characterized by "a barrage of spectacular special effects, a slew of fantastic monsters, a ferociously funny villain—and, most important, a refreshing lack of pretentiousness." Thomas lauded director Bryan Spicer for raising the quality of production values for a feature film adaptation of the TV series while maintaining a likable "comic-book look and sense of wonder" and wholesome high school characters parents would approve of.[14]

Caryn James of The New York Times thought that story-wise, it resembles multiple episodes of the television series strung together with slightly better special effects, and that the result was loud, headache-inducing and boring for adults, but that children would enjoy it. James further stated that too much of its running time is spent showing the Rangers without their powers.[15] Roger Ebert gave it only half a star out of a possible four stars, saying that it is "as close as you can get to absolute nothing and still have a product to project on the screen," comparing it to synthetic foods in brightly marketed packaging with no nutritional content. He felt that the characters, with the exception of Ivan Ooze ("curious that, 6 thousand years ago, he would have had an English name"), lacked personalities, and that the scenes of monsters rampaging through the city hearkened back to the worst Japanese monster films.[16] Mick LaSalle of the San Francisco Chronicle found the fights "only adequately choreographed," called the battle in the climax "a complete disaster" and stating that it made no sense in timing, that protagonists were not very intelligent, and the actors playing them unremarkable.[17]

Other media edit

Video games edit

Four different video game titles based on the film were released for the Super NES, Sega Genesis, Game Boy, and Game Gear.

Comic books edit

Marvel Comics released a comic book adaptation and a photo comic book adaptation of the film in September 1995. The comic book was printed with two different covers: one featuring fully morphed Rangers and the other featuring them in their Ninjetti uniforms.

Notes edit

  1. ^ a b Retrieved from the soundtrack's booklet.

References edit

  1. ^ Petrikin, Chris (February 18, 1998). "Fox renamed that toon". Variety. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  2. ^ "MIGHTY MORPHIN POWER RANGERS (PG) (!)". British Board of Film Classification. July 11, 1995. Retrieved March 19, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie at Box Office Mojo
  4. ^ Gritten, David (June 28, 1995). "Oberon to Ooze--It's All in a Day's Work". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 22, 2010.
  5. ^ Allmusic review
  6. ^ "Rangers soundtrack due in June". Pensacola News Journal. April 26, 1995. p. 11. Retrieved September 30, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ "Discovery Zone Ad- MMPR Movie (1995)". YouTube. Alphabet Inc. September 30, 2012. Retrieved August 3, 2019.[dead YouTube link]
  8. ^ "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Complete Series [25th Anniversary Limited Steelbook Edition] + Exclusive Lithograph". Shout! Factory. August 7, 2018. Retrieved May 16, 2018.
  9. ^ "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie". Shout! Factory. June 12, 2019. Retrieved March 19, 2019.
  10. ^ Dutka, Elaine (July 6, 1995). "The Sky's the Limit at Box Office Movies: A total of about $154 million in receipts sets a five-day record. 'Apollo 13' is atop the field with $38.5 million". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
  11. ^ "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (1995)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved October 7, 2021.  
  12. ^ "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers". Metacritic. Fandom, Inc. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  13. ^ "Find CinemaScore" (Type "Power Rangers" in the search box). CinemaScore. Retrieved August 17, 2022.
  14. ^ Thomas, Kevin (June 30, 1995). "A Dazzling Leap From TV to Big Screen for 'Rangers'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 22, 2010.
  15. ^ James, Caryn (June 30, 1995). "FILM REVIEW; For Power Rangers, Bikinis Are Not The Issue". The New York Times. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
  16. ^ "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie". RogerEbert.com. June 30, 1995. Retrieved January 29, 2022.
  17. ^ Lasalle, Mick (June 30, 1995). "Mighty Mindless 'Rangers'". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved August 25, 2010.

External links edit