Running Time: 85 mins.
Premise: In the year 2022, all crime is legal and for one night of the year due to a Government-sponsored program called “The Purge.” One rich family’s safety (led by Ethan Hawke and Lena Headey) is threatened when they take in a refuge on the night of the Purge. Can they make it to morning?
Behind-the-Scenes: Made on the cheap for $3 million. Michael Bay is a credited producer.
The Good: The premise of The Purge is a good one, allowing plenty of room for both chills and biting social commentary on class, race, and violence. The setup and world building is strong.
The Bad: That strong setup is completely ruined by wholly unbelievable character actions, unimaginative plot twists, and dramatic scenes that are consistently undercut by unintentional laughs. At 85 minutes, it rushes to its conclusion and leaves the viewer asking, “Really? That’s It?” Seriously, the things that characters do in this movie and the way they behave defies logic to an unacceptable degree. All of the so-called “scares” are unearned, and the movie devolves into just another defend-the-house flick a la Straw Dogs.
Should You See It?: Oh hell no. Easily the worst movie I’ve seen so far this year.
Rating: * out of 5 stars.
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