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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars HAVE A SAFE NIGHT
The Purge is an evening where there are no laws and people run amok killing each other, sort of like Detroit on Halloween on steroids. The theme is stated in the beginning during a radio call in program, "The poor can't protect themselves, they are the victims." Indeed that was part of the theme. The film concentrates on one family of some wealth. They lock themselves in...
Published 14 months ago by The Movie Guy

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44 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A wasted premise
The Purge is set in the near-future (2022) in the U.S. - all crime is legal for one night a year in a release deemed necessary by the New Founding Fathers to vent all the pent-up rage and anger that we as humans amass. The Purge is working, unemployment is at 1% and there is barely a crime recorded outside of the Purge night. The Sandins are a successful family in plush...
Published 14 months ago by J. Morris


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44 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A wasted premise, 10 Jun 2013
By 
J. Morris "Josh" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
The Purge is set in the near-future (2022) in the U.S. - all crime is legal for one night a year in a release deemed necessary by the New Founding Fathers to vent all the pent-up rage and anger that we as humans amass. The Purge is working, unemployment is at 1% and there is barely a crime recorded outside of the Purge night. The Sandins are a successful family in plush suburbia, although it is clear they are the envy of the neighbourhood - head-of-household James (Ethan Hawke - Training Day) makes his money selling the high-end security systems to rich folk looking to protect their homes on the night of the Purge. However, this Purge, his security will be tested to the absolute...

Spoilers probably follow; so stop reading here if you don't want to know. Firstly, this is such a great concept, they could have gone for a much larger macro-picture of the society that the Purge creates; the rich having humility for fear of invoking their neighbour's envy, bosses being nicer to employees and people being all-around fairer to each other for fear of the great karmic correction that can come about from one night without laws. This was what got me to see this film, this premise in itself is fascinating. I would love to see a film about the larger and longer-term consequences of the basis of the Purge. Alas - such cerebral societal exploration was not to be in this production.

Instead, we have a poorly-explained narrative involving a homeless man getting into the Sandin's house and the kids actively undermining the Father and Mother to further the plot. Then some mask-clad homicidal prep-school kids headed by the creepy Rhys Wakefield (Sanctum) show up and declare they want the man hiding in the house - for no other reason than to exercise their right to purge - fair enough - but they then proceed to waste the next few hours storming the bastion that is the Sandin residence to kill one homeless man - despite there probably being a myriad of other options to do in these precious few hours. At first I was certain there must be a reason why they hungered after this one specific homeless guy (espionage or some other such motive) but no, they just REALLY wanted to kill THAT one guy. There is an inordinate amount of character development spent on the kids remote controlled toy that goes literally nowhere, despite the alluring possibility of a Home Alone-style trap set-up etc.

When it all plays out, it's somewhere between a [bad] home invasion movie like Trespass which also had some inclusion of inter-class friction - the haves and the have-nots - and a jumpy slasher movie. The cohorts of the excellent Rhys Wakefield (star of the show here) all wear the creepy smiling mask and sharpened machetes for the duration - but during their assault they prefer jumping out at people and at one point even saying "Boo" rather than actually getting on with finding the reason they are even at the house in the first place. The Purge also has more moments where A is pointing a gun at B and then is shot by an off-screen/unseen C just in the nick of time than any other film in history. This set-up must happen literally 10 times in the film, so much so it actually seems to be an instant death sentence for any character pointing a gun at another...

Whilst it's not the worst film out there by a long shot - and even out-performing some other big name films at the box office at the time of writing - the Purge will hold a spot in my memory not for what it was but for what it could have been.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A terrifying and unique idea with a weak execution, 17 Aug 2014
By 
Mr. T. E. Samad (Birmingham West Midlands England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
This was one of those movies I just had to watch after seeing the trailer. The Purge has garnered very mixed reactions. Some love it, some hate it while others are situated somewhere in the middle. I belong to this last group.

The movie takes place in a distant America and at the centre is the Sandin family, comprised of James Sandin (Ethan Hawke), Mary (Lena Headey) and their privileged brood, Zoey (Adelaide Kane) and Charlie (Max Burkholder); all living in an America that's now governed by the “New Founding Fathers” who have created a law that allows crime to be legal for a twelve-hour period once a year, with a few exceptions. “And why the hell would any government allow this madness?” you may ask. Well, the idea is to contain most of the violence in society to a short time period and allow for a nation-wide catharsis that releases a lot of destructive emotions and all the dark and repressed animalistic urges deep inside people. However, the movie does point towards suspicions that the real agenda behind this so-called Purge is related to population control and gradually eliminating the poorer members of society.

On Purge night, the Sandin family lock down their protective mansion and that would have been that if it weren’t for their greasy-haired son whose act of compassion and decency towards a homeless man (Edwin Hodge) sets the stage for the nightmare that the Sandin family endure for the remainder of the movie. One thing is certain: things will never be the same again for this family.

The movie starts off strong and promising but then quickly descends into another home-invasion, cat-and-mouse thriller. The acting definitely isn’t Oscar-worthy, but watchable. Ethan Hawke didn’t disappoint, as expected. And the movie’s mask-wearing psychos are some of the most weirdest and demented characters I’ve seen in a while, especially their (probably self-appointed) leader, played by Rhys Wakefield. I honestly couldn’t ascertain whether he looked creepier with or without his mask. There’s something about a rich-looking, suit-wearing, entitled psychopath with a devious smile on his face that just doesn’t sit comfortably with me.

The Purge is clearly packed with political messages as much as it’s dotted with major plot holes and weak character development. And I think most people will focus on the weaker points of the movie than its strengths, which there aren’t many. The movie starts off by showing footage from different areas of the country of Americans committing horrific acts of violence against other Americans. It is also revealed at the beginning that there are extremely low levels of crime and unemployment in America; we can assume this is because of the Purge. But at what cost? And how much are we in the real world willing to sacrifice just to live in a “better” society? Perhaps this is the main question that the movie, or its writer and director James DeMonaco, is asking the audience.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars HAVE A SAFE NIGHT, 22 Jun 2013
By 
The Movie Guy "Movies from A to Z" (United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
The Purge is an evening where there are no laws and people run amok killing each other, sort of like Detroit on Halloween on steroids. The theme is stated in the beginning during a radio call in program, "The poor can't protect themselves, they are the victims." Indeed that was part of the theme. The film concentrates on one family of some wealth. They lock themselves in their home with steel windows and doors. Unfortunately the outside world has a way of making its way indoors as the film becomes a home break-in movie with a theme, and study in individual character mirroring us as a society. Lena Headey plays "the mom." She represents compassion, the "It is not about who they are, it is about who we are." The film has some dark comedic moments, sudden plot twists, and things that go bump in the night.

Worth a view for those who like a film with tense scenes.

Parental Guide: F-bomb, no sex or nudity.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Quickly purged from your memory, 1 April 2014
By 
Jules (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
In the not too distant future, the American government allow a sanctioned edict, where once a year for 12 hours, crime is legalized so people can vent their built up emotions & urges. Which over the years has resulted in an all time low on crime. Now, on the eve of The Purge in the year 2022, the Sandin family are unknowingly going to come face to face with The Purge as it lands on their doorstep.

The Purge is a very low budget movie ($3 million) , and they are obviously restricted in terms of resources. They managed to achieve a very sinister feeling around the build up of meeting the characters, as given the premise, you can read dark thoughts into innocent remarks. The Sandin family living in a secure home with steel shutters over the doors/windows when the purge klaxon sounds, sadly means they have to come up with a massively contrived way to create the meat & veg of the film. Where the naive youngest of the family allows a desperate homeless man into the home, with little concern for his own family. Who just so happens to be being chased by some Harvard toff's out for a purging. Still, they manage to achieve quite an exciting home invasion thriller when it comes to the siege tension, mixed moral dilemma & the inevitable claustrophobic cat & mouse hunt around the home, with some gun shoot outs & axe/machete wielding mayhem.

The acting is pretty decent with a mixture of experience. Ethan Hawke (Training Day) & Lena Headey (Game of Thrones) lead the way with strong performances as the concerned parents protecting their children. Adelaide Kane (Teen Wolf) as the eldest daughter & Max Burkholder (Parenthood) as the young naieve son, are convincing. Rhys Wakefield (The Black Balloon) gives a creepy performance as the visually menacing, yet oddly polite leader of the invading gang. And Edwin Hodge (Red Dawn) is credible as the distraught homeless war veteran. Also co-stars Chris Mulkey (First Blood) & Arija Bareikis (Southland).

In conclusion, despite it's contrived plot catalyst & insufficient depth of horror, it produces quite a decent one off viewing home invasion thriller around it's bizarre premise. Contains strong language & violence. Worth a watch.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Reasonable..., 31 Mar 2014
By 
P. F. Cope "Pamandlawrence" (Staffordshire, uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
I have to agree with other reviewers that The Purge could have been so much better. As it stands it is a reasonable film that walks between a survivalist and a hacker type genre. The main concept of the film seems almost glossed over which is a shame as it is quite novel and a little expansion would have made the film much more interesting. This and some plot holes affects the rating, dropping down to a three instead of a solid four stars. One final comment is that the film is extremely violent, more so than would be normally expected for a 15.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Let The Purge Commence, 13 Mar 2014
The Purge is a great film about a near future america where for one night a year all emergency services are shutdown and all crime is legal, the story is actually quite good and it's has its moments to make you jump.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars could be so much better, 12 Mar 2014
By 
Miss Burton "Kat" (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
I was fascinated with the concept on this film, so I was really looking forward to it...but it just misses the mark. The concept is that in America crime and unemployment has been virtually illuminated because one night a year any crime is legal. which is a really interesting idea...but the film just doesn't...make enough of it. so it ends up as a third rate horror film. I quite like bad horror movies, but this doesn't really even end up being enjoyable on that level. it needed to focus on the social dark distopia aspect, or turn it into a proper horror film that's actually scary, not try to do both. such a pity
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great idea, 28 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
i reccomend this film as interesting idea.where for 12 hours there is no law.you allowed to do what want. shows human nature.survival of fittest.intresting well acted film
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!, 2 Feb 2014
This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
Originally I was highly skeptical about this film. I hate the classic jumpy horrors but I cannot describe how much I enjoyed this film!

For 12 hours, 1 day a year all crime is legal. As a result crime and unemployment are near none existent over the rest of the year.

I cannot recommend it more! Not only does it make good viewing but it leaves you thinking afterwards!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars love it or hate it, 1 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Purge [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
depends how ur thinking ie why don't they just burn the house down etc.Like marmite its either love it or hate it im afraid personally I was expecting a lot more but then again dident like the lead actor hes a bit ropey not top quality i.e best of the best Hollywood actor
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The Purge [DVD] [2013]
The Purge [DVD] [2013] by James DeMonaco (DVD - 2013)
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