The Purge: Election Year (2016)

4:45 PM

Keep America Great
 The Purge: Election Year is the third instalment in the horror franchise and sees writer/director James DeMonaco of the first two films return. The film stars Frank Grillo (Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Purge: Anarchy), Elizabeth Mitchell (Lost, Frequency) and Mykeiti Williamson (Con Air, Forrest Gump). "Years after sparing the man who killed his son, former police sergeant Barnes has become head of security for Senator Charlie Roan, a Presidential candidate targeted for death on Purge night due to her vow to eliminate the Purge". The Purge movies have so far improved on their predecessors...can Election Year continue that pattern?

This is a franchise that I have really got behind over the years - the first was underwhelming but the second was far superior and much more sophisticated in my opinion- I liked it that much, it was my 9th favourite film of 2014! Election Year won't make the top 10 this year because I've seen many more movies so there is more competition. Election Year is once again a sophisticated and solid entry into The Purge franchise - it addresses the political element of the series we have all noticed and it addresses the topic at the best time possible - near an election where there is a possibility Trump could come into power. Election Year definitely won't disappoint, it even takes the violence and anarchy to a whole new level. 

This probably is my favourite plot out of any of The Purge movies so far - the plot is the clearest out of them all. I thought it was clever to show the film from the point of view of political people who could come into power. I also think The Purge: Election Year is very brave to make a film that so many people could see actually happening in the future as the setting parallels the real world. I'm not going to go too political in this review but if Trump did come into power, could The Purge someday be a reality? It was interesting to see The Purge explore a post-Trump world - lets hope it says science fiction though. The plot is very sophisticated and very intelligent - horror films definitely do not deserve to be this clever. 

I have to say, The Purge: Election Year is probably the scariest entry in the franchise yet. I will make it clear that these films are not true horror flicks, they are more like thrillers but this one is definitely more graphic and has many more effective jump scares. I was actually surprised by the amount of jump scares in the film as the first two don't have that many at all. Nevertheless, they made the film even more unsettling and even more 'on the edge of your seat'. The Purge: Election Year is also very violent - you will see people be hit by vehicles, beheaded, stabbed to death and much much worse. Some of the creepiest characters Election Year introduced to the series were the Candy Bar girls - even though their performances were....interesting, they were extremely creepy and horrible characters. The way they rolled up to Party in the USA by Miley Cyrus in cars covered by christmas lights wearing masks and holding sent shivers down my creepy. The end of the Candy Bar Girls is very graphic though. What I liked is that we were introduced to the purgers beforehand, we knew what the candy bar girls were like before Purge night and we were also introduced to the idea of murder tourists which was an interesting and believable idea. 

All of it seems positive right? Where are the flaws? They are in the acting and the editing. Firstly, the acting. The performances from the two leads were fantastic and I have no complaints about them - Frank Grillo doesn't have as much to do this time around but he is still great. Elizabeth Mitchell is also very good and I actually believed her as a real life senator. However, the supporting cast were not so great. I thought Mykeiti Williamson's performance was pretty poor and his lines were very cheesy and cliche. I'm not going to go into details about the rest of the supporting cast but just know, they don't do this sophisticated film much justice. 

The editing was also a major problem for me. I thought at times it was too quick and then at other moments it was too slow. An example of it being to quick is when things start to get interesting and the leads come across the murder tourists - a big jump scare is provided but then the film just cuts back to other characters who are having a much more slow paced scene. Also, towards the end, the film does slow down quite a bit and you kind of forget how high the stakes are and that these characters are on the run. I also thought way too many cross fades were used - they're a generic editing choice and didn't really work with a horror film like Election Year. 

So, The Purge: Election Year is another satisfying entry to the series - it brings something new to the franchise once again and I would happily watch a 4th instalment as I am not bored yet. The only obvious route is going back to the first ever Purge but who knows what they will come up with? The acting from Grillo and Mitchell is great but the supporting cast let them down. This film is more horrific in terms of scares and violence - the more films we get, the more horrifying The Purge becomes. The plot is the most interesting one yet but some of the editing choices are a little lacklustre. The Purge: Election Year gets my vote!


What did you think of THE PURGE: ELECTION YEAR? Do you think this horrific event could become a reality some day? - COMMENT BELOW

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