Hiya guys! I haven’t done a review in a while but I’m getting back into the rhythm again. Here’s my review of the new Purge movie. So I thought The Purge:Election Year was an interesting choice for me since I haven’t seen the previous two films but got a sense of what the movies were about. In light of the ongoing US Elections, which to be honest has been a stranger-than-fiction kind of affair, The Purge postures itself as tiny bit of dystopia grounded in some kind of…shall we call it ‘founding’ truth? Consider the increase in uprisings and protests. Consider how drugs like marijuana have been legalized in order to reduce the need to trade illegally and all the socio-economic benefits used to justify the case. And think about how ‘we’ll build a wall’ is the defining catchphrase of 2016’s Reublican presidential nominee, a reality no less brought about by the angst against the ‘establishment’. Could there really be something that The Purge is tapping into…some sort of repression that could have the potential to turn into an uncontrolled maniacal fervour?
I knew what I was getting myself into. The Purge isn’t good at all. In fact, it’s toxic. This is the kind of entertainment that remains solely in CAPITAL AND BOLD, ‘SOLELY FOR ENTERTAINMENT‘. Though it might raise interesting issues that comes about in flickers, this is exactly the kind of film that perpetuates the violence and moral perversion shown on screen. But perhaps more disgusting than all the degeneracy of the people is how the film has to show so much of the collective corruption of the human soul in order to bring about what little good there is left in living hell. This can mean one of only two things. One; The film strongly believes we humans are so fuc*ked up that we’re quite literally screwed. Two; It uses this sort of depraved psychosis to satisfy the sensationalist streaks in its audience because hey, if we can’t do this in real life, then I’d at least wanna get some of this on screen. I believe its the second reason and it makes The Purge quite a distasteful film.
I won’t be a hypocrite myself and dump all this crap on the film and people who enjoyed it. There were times where the tension got pretty high and a few scenes got me hooked. But I was genuinely concerned about the good guys in the film more than anything. Therein lies the trap. It makes it easy to forget what The Purge is actually about. It isn’t about the good guys, or the senator who has good intentions or the average hard-working joe who just wants to work and live in peace. This is about the mass hysteria that the movie so naturally boxes us in. One scene where a group of teens try to take revenge on a guy’s store for being told off when trying to shoplift the other day is just so disgusting I don’t even know whether to be disgusted or angry…or laugh because it’s so ludicrious.
In the end, the film reliably uses pain, suffering and loss to almost offset and balance its glorifying parade of violence. What’s worse is that The Purge uses all this death and depravity as catharsis, reinforcing the very idea the film is perpetuating; That only with death and suffering and pain on screen can we, the audience, be somehow more enlightened. But don’t think too much of it. It’s probably just asking you to sit back and enjoy; Which is worse.