“The Purge” is worth a splurge

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If you love films that bring together the joy of happy families with the madness of deranged killers, then James DeMonaco’s The Purge is a must see for you.

The film focuses on James Sandin (played by Ethan Hawke) and his family, living in the America of 2022.  The Sandins and their neighbors are preparing for the annual purge, an event where people can do anything and not have it held against them (it’s a government sponsored venting time period).  You can literally kill the president and his family, and then murder another twenty people too, but as long as its within the 12 hours set aside for the “Purge,” you’re all good.

In this future world, Mr. Sandin is a homeland security salesman who sold home security to almost everyone in the neighborhood. Presumably, every year Sandin and his family lock down their home and take no part in the purge. But this year the Sandins’ son, Charlie, feels the need to disarm the security and let in a black man who was going to be killed by a group of deranged killers, celebrating their right to purge.  Bad things happen after this.

Truthfully, if you have seen the trailer for The Purge you have seen most of the movie. The film is very short, only lasting an hour and a half.  If you’re the type to run off to go to the bathroom or get some snacks while the movie is playing then you’ll probably miss out on a lot. With such a short time span the movie comes across as being rushed, another half an hour would have served for a more developed plot.

Nonetheless, the film does offer some interesting moments and plot lines worth seeing, especially those involving the neighbors.  We all have those neighbors–you know, the ones that secretly hate us but still force themselves to smile and start up a conversation with us every time they cross paths with us.  They’re the kind of neighbor you’re pretty sure would stab you in the back the moment they had the chance.  Unfortunately, the Sandins have these neighbors, and when they hear all the commotion going on at the Sandin house, they decide to go over and help out.  Of course, the people they come to help out aren’t the Sandins, but those trying to do the Sandins harm.

Interesting plot turns like this make The Purge ultimately worth seeing in theaters.  It may not be long and it may be predictable, but it’s clever enough to give you an enjoyable time at the movies.

The Purge is rated R for strong disturbing violence, and some language.

3 hawks color

A rating of Three Hawks translates to “good but not great.”

 The work is entertaining enough but lacks true originality.