Like an eighties B movie this film posits some interesting ideas much like the first film but it would have worked better as a graphic novel rather than a film. The characters feel like they are straight out of a comic book and somehow the imagined translation onto film loses power.
It is entertaining in an eighties style with a modern slant.
The plot is simple enough, one day a year, all crime, including murder is legal. A way for the government to allow the population to purge their dark urges, so the crime rate throughout the rest of the year is kept at a minimum. James De Monaco directs the second part in this series coming off the back of the first and IMDB tells us that he is busy directing the 3rd one at the moment.
A couple, Shane and Liz, played by Zach Gilford and Kiele Sanchez break down on their way home, merely hours before the Purge begins.
A lone man, Sergeant, Frank Grillo (Captain America-The Winter Soldier), fills his car with guns and weapons and heads out into the night. Two sisters, Eva and Cali Sanchez, Carmen Ejogo and Zoe Soul head out into the night to try and find their father, who has ‘sold’ himself as a victim in order to provide for his daughters.
These are our protagonists and their job is to stay alive during this dangerous, deadly time.
If you’re a fan of great thrillers of the eighties, Escape From New York, The Warriors, Assault on Precinct 13, etc, you will enjoy this. It draws inspiration from a lot of these films and does it reasonably well. It is probably equally as good as The Purge and while neither of them are what anyone would call a classic, there is enough in each of them to keep the audience entertained.
The idea is prescient in this day and age, holding a mirror up to society in a sci-fi stylee.
If you’re in the mood for a thriller that requires little brain-work this is for you.
It does, however, ask questions about the state of the nation and dissatisfaction of the people who live there. It is far from mindless and is a definite step up from the usual studio fare.
Violent and suspenseful, for those who like their thrillers a little bit twisted.