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The Purge Election Year Movie Review
“The soul of our country is at stake. The Purge targets the poor and the innocent, it is a night that is defining our county. The Purge has to come to an end.” Senator Roan.
In this third installment of The Purge trilogy, the movie franchise takes on a murderous political theme. The movie opens with a memory flash. A young girl is kneeling while a purging maniac holds her entire family hostage. One by one, her family is killed and she is left to survive. Flash forward to present day and this little girl is all grown-up and is Senator Charlie Roan, played by Elizabeth Mitchell. Senator Roan is running for president on the platform of ending Purge Night once and for all. If you remember from the previous installments, Purge Night was sanctioned by the New Founding Fathers of America giving citizens one night – 12 hours - to murder, maim and pillage without any repercussions. All support services – fire, police and rescue are halted; all this in an attempt to reduce crime.
In The Purge: Election Year, our hero Leo Barnes, once again played by Frank Grillo, returns as her police bodyguard, but as with all Purge movies no one can be trusted and Frank spends Purge night protecting the presidential candidate from forces determined to shut her down.
Great movie moments:
Mykelti Williamson, of Forest Gump (Bubba) and Con Air (Baby-o) fame, plays a deli owner who has a run in with a couple of uniform-wearing school girls over some candy. They vow to return that night to “get that candy.” He has lost his purge insurance, so he is forced to protect his own shop. Williamson has most of the scene stealing lines in the movie.
Does Purge Election Year bear any resemblance to the current political climate? Some would argue that several of the movie situations may actually become a reflection of real life. The question... was the release of the movie somehow planned with the 2016 elections? While many movie goers were disturbed over the political base of the movie (Richard Nixon mask), it was easy for me to ignore any suggestiveness of political bias. Sometimes you just have to look at a movie as pure entertainment without reading too much into it.
There is only mild flirtation between Leo and Charlie. While the underlying chemistry is one that you would hope viewers would experience, the writers did a great job in keeping the focus off a romance and, instead, on the action.
Not so great movie moments:
There is no denying that finding a female lead to play the role may have been tough, but it was hard to watch Elizabeth Mitchell play a tough senator out to save the country, perhaps too many Lifetime movies.
While I did see this in the movie theaters, I was confused in a couple of scenes where the story veered too sharply in one direction or another. Fortunately, through a review on DVD, I was able to pick up on the connections between story lines.
Overall, The Purge: Election Year was a good thriller/action movie. I give it 3 out of 5 stars. Perhaps, staying away from a political story and making it more about the Purge helped.
Director: James DeMonaco
Rating: R Plenty of bloody violence, language. Not a movie for kids
Runtime: 149 minutes
The movie can be found on Amazon:
The Purge: Election Year
I paid for this movie with my own funds and have not been compensated for this review.
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