The Purge title

Tag line : Survive the Night

The PurgeSet in the near future, the authorities have found a novel idea of dealing with crime. For one night of the year, all crime is legal across America between the hours of 7pm-7am. Where you can quite literally "get away with murder" and anything else people want to do. Referred to as "The Purge", the authorities have discovered that allowing people to do what they want for one night, has resulted in the lowest crime rate in centuries during the rest of the year.

For the Sandin's, a fairly well-off family who live in a gated community, they feel fairly secure. It's a nice neighbourhood, full of wealthy people, far away from the "problem" areas of the inner cities, and Husband James (Ethan Hawk) works for a security company, so they have all the latest hi-tech steel shutters and security systems they feel will keep trouble out if it comes calling.

Unfortunately, when their young son allows a homeless person, who's being chased by a group of young psychopaths, to take shelter in their house. It marks the start of a violent siege, as the group chasing him want this guy at any cost and the family are left with a choice of whether to give this guy up, or wait for them to break in and end up fighting them off.

Though marketed as an action feature, it was really more of a psychological horror, about the darker side of human nature. Showing what people will behave like when there are no consequences to your actions and just how far people are prepared to go, just to protect what is theirs.

Overall I enjoyed it, a very grim and disturbing film that makes you stop to consider whether the ends can ever truly justify the means.

Overall marks : 6/10.

Terrifying Trivia.

  • The film's working title was "Vigilandia".

  • Writer/Director James DeMarco got the idea for the film after his wife told him about a road rage incident she got embroiled in.

  • The film's budget was $3,000,000.

  • Ethan Hawke also starred in the 2005 remake of "Assault on Precinct 13", which shared several similar themes.

  • The line James Sandin (Ethan Hawke) says as he arrives home, "Home again, home again, jiggety-jig" is from the opening of an old nursery rhyme: "To market, to market, to buy a fat pig/Home again, home again, jiggety-jig". The phrase was also used in "Blade Runner" when the character of JF Sebastian arrived home.

  • In one scene, the Sandin's young son scares the mother (Lena Headey) with a half melted "Terminator" type toy. This was a jokey reference to Lena Headey's role as Sarah Connor in the TV series "Terminator : The Sarah Connor Chronicles".

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