This teaser poster should have read, "Warning, you are about to watch the worst movie ever made". Ladies and gentlemen, I am frustrated, but what is so enraging is that I have only myself to blame. I loved, loved, loved Paranormal Activity. I thought it was simple yet brilliant and terrifying. Now, because of my love for that movie, every time I see the words,
From the producers of Paranormal Activity..."
it draws me in like a moth to flame. However, the sad part is, I am a moth that knows the flame will consume and kill me, yet I flock to it anyway. I mean, fool me once (Insidious) shame on you, fool me twice (Sinister) shame on me. How many times am I going to allow myself to be made a fool of? Well at least once more it seems as I took a precious 90 minutes out of my life to sit through the crapfest, billed as a horror film, The Purge.
Horror...very loosely Defined
We have frequently sat here in judgement over "horror" films. All too often they leave us wanting. Horror seems to be a genre which is constantly redefining itself to the point where now gore, thrillers, and just basic shock-value are the rule of the day, rather than things that are truly terrifying. However, I would have happily watched any one of these kinds of movies rather than what I watched today.
The Purge takes a bold step in the horror genre. It calls itself a horror film yet delivers none of the expected themes listed above. Instead, it is a political look at a future America where a new government structure has established a night where all crime is legal for 12 hours. In the near future, 2022 to be exact (only 9 years from now) the U.S. is under new management (don't ask me how that happened, the film never told me) and this management has succeeded in wiping out unemployment and crime by simply allowing americans one night a year to wipe each other out.
Now, in theory this sounds interesting, however as I feared when I first heard of it, it is a theme that would be difficult to explore in a horror context. Sure, films such as Hunger Games and Battle Royale have had great success with similar themes/plots, however they did not bill themselves as horror films. The Purge quickly leaves all fear behind and simply presents the viewer with an exploration of the social divide between the "haves" and the "have-nots", as well as the moral question of whether this night of purging is right.
Well, of course it isn't, that's why it doesn't happen in real life! It's an interesting thought producers of Paranormal Activity but unfortunately not one that we can really relate to, or need to fear. Might this film have worked if billed under a different genre, perhaps, but with us being asked to look at it in a horror light, all I can do is laugh and say that this movie truly sucked.
Rich White Kids aren't Scary, No Matter How White.
Take a brief moment to look at the horror "villains" pictured below, these are horror stars that in their own rights instill true fear in some way, shape or form.
So, with reminders like these of what truly instills fear in the hearts of horror fans...where does this guy stack up?
Honestly the rich white boy speaking in old English couldn't scare me any less if he truly tried. Honestly at no time during this movie did I feel scared, concerned, or even slightly on edge. To top it all off, everyone else in this guys little gang wore masks that look exactly like this guy's face. So it's just a band of unintimdating rich kids skipping along the street.
How they were not among the first to be "purged" is a question for the ages. The only part more hilarious than this clown's introduction was the little security camera montage of all the white kids being scary. This consisted of white girl make out session (not going to haunt my dreams in a bad way), white girl skipping, white girl swings on swing while white guy pretends to shoot himself in the head, and white guy gives white girl piggy-back ride. All with these stupid masks, seriously? Not only was it an insult to my intellegence, it was just boring.
It actually Tastes Worse Than it Smells...
To be honest, reviewing this terrible movie is just really starting to anger me. So I thought we could sum up all up with this simple recipe for how you can make your own crap horror film at home:
Home-made, Horror-Free Crap Movie
• 1 completely unbelievable and poorly written plot
• 5-10 laughable "bad guys"
** be sure that they are totally not intimidating in any
way what so ever
• 1/2 of a poor performance from Lena Headey
• 1 entirely crap performance for Ethan Hawke
• 1 Political/moral criticism that has no basis in reality
** be sure to remove all elements of horror completely
1. First, take your script and grease it with unknown actors.
2. Mix all your ingredients in a bowl and pour them into the script.
3. Next, sprinkle plot holes over the top of the mixture. Be sure to sprinkle liberally. The more plot
hole the better. You simply can't have enough plot holes.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 90 mins. and serve luke-warm to a disappointed crowd. Be sure to
frost with fresh feces and garnish with a terrible ending that leaves everyone confused
and angry beyond all recognition.
I implore you, please do not watch this movie, it is the worst movie ever. I give it a 2.5 out of 10 and that is simply because there are two guns in it a one almost awesome moment at the very end of the movie. Trust me, you can go about your life happy not knowing what that moment is.
Well, I hope you find this review helpful, and as always we'd love to hear your thoughts on this film and any others you're watching this October. Share your thoughts with us by commenting below, through our Contact page, on Facebook or on Twitter.
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Thanks for reading and until next time.