Home Reviews Review: The Purge: Election Year

Review: The Purge: Election Year

Universal Pictures' The Purge: Election Year

The Purge: Election Year hopes to continue its run in the inexpensive series of horror/action movies that started a few years back. While they’re not great movies, they do have something that appeals to at least some of the general public. If you’re a fan of the franchise to at least some degree, you should happy with the fact that it’s built in a way that can allow it to keep running for years to come. It’s just disappointing that this installment isn’t as strong as it could have been.

In Election Year, we’re still following Leo Barnes (Frank Grillo), the protagonist from The Purge: Anarchy. Now, he’s working security for Senator Charlie Roan (Elizabeth Mitchell), a presidential candidate who is somehow threatening the all powerful New Founding Fathers for control of the United States. To stop her, they don’t plan on rigging the elections or anything like that, they decide to try to kill her off on the one night every year when all crime is legal.

The plot isn’t exactly plausible even if you choose to ignore common sense. However, that;s not what hurts the movie. Here, it’s the horrendous acting from a few of the actors that disrupts things and manages to take you out of what’s being shown to us quite a bit. Scenes not including these specific people are okay, but they go back to these characters far more than they should have. If I had it my way, they would have either not been in the movie in the first place or they would have been victims of the purge as soon as it started.

Once these characters are made less significant, The Purge: Election Year does manage to gradually improve. Although it’s still not fantastic or anything, it becomes serviceable even if it’s somewhat predictable. For people who love or like these kinds of movies, this may be able to satisfy your need for cinematic carnage. There’s certainly enough here to do that, but I don’t think it’s worth spending money on when looking at the film in its entirety.

As a matter of fact, one of the complaints that I had of the previous film was that it doesn’t have the amount of violence that I anticipated. In this one, they seem to want to make up for it, by giving us more blood, more violence and at least a little less creeping around. This does assist in making the movie better at some point. I just wish they would have made a few changes to the cast and maybe made the movie a bit more believable. Doing those things could have turned this into something that’s worth your time and money.

The Purge: Election Year joins a franchise that’s managing to survive in spite of it not even being considered “must-see” in the minds of people who actually like it. This isn’t the kind of series that will bring much acclaim either way, so just keeping a stable audience should be the target goal of those behind it. In some ways, I think they can continue to accomplish that, but this specific movie in the franchise could also be what turns people off from it for some of the reasons I pointed out. Hopefully, they don’t make this mistake in future installments. Then again, the damage could already be done.

Rating: R

Director: James DeMonaco

Cast:
Frank Grillo
Elizabeth Mitchell
Mykelti Williamson
Edwin Hodge
Betty Gabriel
Joseph Julian Soria
Terry Serpico

Film Length: 110 minutes

Release Date: July 1, 2016

Distributor: Universal Pictures

  • 3/10
    Score - 3/10
3/10
  • Pyotr Fedorov stars in IFC Midnight's SPUTNIK

    Review: Sputnik

    One thing that you’ll take away from Sputnik is that the people behind it wanted to …
  • Dan Stevens and Alison Brie star in IFC Films' THE RENTAL

    Review: The Rental

    The Rental is a pretty straightforward thriller in some ways. With its small budget and ca…
  • (L-R) Juliette Binoche, Catherine Deneuve, and Ethan Hawke star in IFC Films' THE TRUTH

    Review: The Truth (La Vérité)

    When hearing about Hirokazu Kore-eda’s project immediately following his film Shopli…
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars in Amazon Studios' 7500

    Review: 7500

    7500 is the type of film that’s set exclusively in one location. These kinds of pict…
  • Sierra McCormick and Jake Horowitz star in Amazon Prime's THE VAST OF NIGHT

    Review: The Vast of Night

    One rule that you learn about in filmmaking is the “show don’t tell” rul…
  • Image from IFC Midnight's THE WRETCHED

    Review: The Wretched

    I don’t understand why studios like IFC don’t take more chances on independent…
Load More Related Articles
Load More By Jaskee Hickman
  • Pyotr Fedorov stars in IFC Midnight's SPUTNIK

    Review: Sputnik

    One thing that you’ll take away from Sputnik is that the people behind it wanted to …
  • Dan Stevens and Alison Brie star in IFC Films' THE RENTAL

    Review: The Rental

    The Rental is a pretty straightforward thriller in some ways. With its small budget and ca…
  • Bella Heathcote stars in IFC Midnight's RELIC

    Review: Relic (2020)

    Relic should be a horror movie. It looks like a horror movie and feels like a horror movie…
  • (L-R) Juliette Binoche, Catherine Deneuve, and Ethan Hawke star in IFC Films' THE TRUTH

    Review: The Truth (La Vérité)

    When hearing about Hirokazu Kore-eda’s project immediately following his film Shopli…
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars in Amazon Studios' 7500

    Review: 7500

    7500 is the type of film that’s set exclusively in one location. These kinds of pict…
  • Pete Davidson stars in Universal Pictures' THE KING OF STATEN ISLAND

    Review: The King of Staten Island

    I always worry about movies being longer than they need to be. That’s an issue that …
Load More In Reviews

Check Also

Attend A Virtual Screening of The Way I See It

CINEMATIC ESSENTIAL is offering you a chance to attend a virtual advance screening of Focu…