John Hanlon Reviews

Film Reviews

The Purge: Anarchy

Genre: Thriller

Director: James DeMonaco

Cast: Zach Gilford, Michael Williams, Kiele Sanchez, Frank Grillo, Carmen Ejogo

MPAA-Rating: R

Release Date: July 18th, 2014

The Purge (2013), viagra 40mg
which introduced the concept of a 12-hour period where consequence-free crime was allowed (save for a few exceptions), for sale
focused on a well-off family ensconced in a wealthy neighborhood who thought nothing of the purge until it arrived at their doorstep. The feature spent most of its time showing one family as they were threatened by wealthy psychopaths outside who wanted to kill a homeless man protected in their home.

Its sequel The Purge: Anarchy offers a wider scope. Instead of one wealthy family, this film focuses on a group of middle or low-income individuals caught in the crossfire as the sixth annual purge begins.

The hard-edged Sergeant (Frank Grillo) becomes the leader of a ragtag group of survivors who are trying to live through the purge. He’s out driving mysteriously that night when he sees two women named Eva (Carmen Ejogo) and Cali (Zoë Soul) preparing to be executed outside of their home. He stops to save them and ends up also protecting them and a young couple named Shane (Zach Gilford) and Liz (Kiele Sanchez) whose car broke down nearby.

The five of them form a mismatched team as they run around the city, escaping all of those who wish to purge their souls of the anger and hatred they have preserved for this very night.

If the original functioned like a home invasion thriller, this one functions as a generic horror film sending these characters from one chaotic event into another. Even when they feel safe from the chaos, the monster of the purge mentality explodes in an individual sending bullets flying everywhere. The story attempts to speak to a greater truth about human nature but that idea— which was so stirring in the original— feels tired here. The original spoke to the idea of the wealthy using this night to purge society of the less well-off and this one speaks to that idea as well (an auction for the rights to murder someone follows that same tone, similar to the ideas from the movie Hostel).

If anything, I wanted the story to ground itself in the middle class and to see that side of the equation. At times, the plot touches on that element (such as when an older man makes a heartbreaking decision to serve his family) or when a Wall Street stockbroker is killed for all of his financial crimes. Overall though, those ideas don’t get the full attention that they should merit and the movie too often settles for the main characters being chased around by guys with guns.

In the end, this sequel reveals itself to be a Saw-wannabe with a conclusion that feels ripped out one of the many sequels to that once promising franchise. In terms of its ambition to start a long-term franchise, The Purge: Anarchy succeeds. There are elements of revolt noted here— which are displayed so much better in the Hunger Games— that one can see that this series could continue for years to come (like the Saw features).

It’s too bad though that some of its more thoughtful themes have been toned down here to pave the way for a franchise that could quickly lose its unique perspective.

Review by: John Hanlon