10 April 2011 | BrianDanaCamp
Action-packed movie spin-off of 1999 sentai series, "Go Go Five"
"Go Go Five: Sudden Shock! A New Super Warrior" (1999) is a movie spin-off of the Japanese sentai series, "Go Go Five," which I've also reviewed on this site and which served as the basis for the 2000 entry in the American Power Rangers re-edit, "Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue." At 42 minutes in length, this one plays like an extended TV episode or, more accurately, a two-parter edited together. The plot has less to do with the rescue operations that were a significant part of the series and a strong source of its appeal (for me, at least) than with some kind of intergalactic strife between warring alien clans that decide to battle it out on Earth over possession of something called the Dark Sword.
A gold-armored and helmeted alien hunter named Jiku arrives on Earth to stop a monstrous alien from the Jyuma Clan named Golmoa (as spelled on the fan-subbed tape I viewed for this review) from finding the Dark Sword's hiding place. To find the sword, Golmoa seeks the help of the Saima Clan, the series' regular villains, and promises to use his new powers to help them achieve their goals. A battle with Golmoa elsewhere in the galaxy had previously left all of Jiku's fellow hunters dead, so he's pretty intent on stopping Golmoa. The grotesque creatures of the Saima Clan, plus their one human-looking member, Venus, agree to help out.
The five siblings who make up the costumed Go Go Five sentai team get involved when they're summoned to stop Golmoa, after he's first shown up to wreak havoc, and encounter Jiku as well. Also along for the ride is Kyoko, the female astronaut the team met in their first TV episode and who now wants to join their team any way she can. Kyoko eventually gets her wish, thanks to her resemblance to one of Jiku's fallen comrades, when a wounded Jiku transfers his power to her so that she can transform into a new gold-armored super warrior and join Go Go Five in their battle with a newly empowered, giant-sized Golmoa. There are some interesting metaphysical elements in all of this, such as when Kyoko, carrying Jiku's essence, enters the Go Go Five team's "Prominence Sword" to give it new power. Jiku had also advised Kyoko, "Tell the warriors of Earth that their spirit is the strongest power."
There are plenty of exciting action scenes sprinkled throughout, including a battle between the female Pink Ranger ("GoPink," aka Matsuri) and Venus, the attractive female Saima Clan member whose counterpart in "Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue" is Vypra (played in that series by a lookalike actress to match scenes from the original). I was struck by the similarity of the gold armored warriors here—as incarnated by Jiku and Kyoko—to the Titanium Ranger in PRLR. However, according to sources on the web, it appears that this character never appeared in another "Go Go Five" episode, so I'm assuming that the characters' appearance here inspired the makers of "Lightspeed Rescue" to take the idea and create a sixth Ranger.