The Purge (2013 film)
The Purge is a 2013 American dystopian action horror film written and directed by James DeMonaco. The film stars Ethan Hawke, Lena Headey, Adelaide Kane, and Max Burkholder as members of a wealthy family who find themselves endangered by a gang of murderers during the annual Purge, a night during which all crime, including murder, is temporarily legal. The Purge premiered at the Stanley Film Festival on May 7, 2013, and Universal Pictures theatrically released it in the United States on June 7, 2013. The film grossed $89 million against a $3 million budget.
|Directed by||James DeMonaco|
|Written by||James DeMonaco|
|Edited by||Peter Gvozdas|
|Music by||Nathan Whitehead|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$89.3 million|
It is the first installment in The Purge franchise. A sequel, subtitled Anarchy, was released worldwide on July 18, 2014. A third film, Election Year, was released July 1, 2016, and a prequel, The First Purge, was released on July 4, 2018, and a television series, set between the second and third films, aired for two seasons from September 4, 2018 to December 17, 2019. A fifth film, The Forever Purge, was released on July 2, 2021.
In 2014, a totalitarian political party called the New Founding Fathers of America are voted into office following an economic collapse and pass a law sanctioning the "Purge", an annual event wherein all crime is legal and emergency services are suspended temporarily. By 2022, the United States is said to have become virtually crime-free, with legal unemployment rates having dropped to 1%.
James Sandin returns to his home in an affluent Los Angeles gated community to wait out the Purge with his wife Mary and their children, Zoey and Charlie. The family is assured the security system manufactured by James' company will keep them safe while Zoey meets her boyfriend Henry. As the purge begins, James enables the security system and the family disperses to go about their normal routines. Zoey returns to her room and finds Henry, who had snuck in before the security system was engaged, planning on confronting her father about their relationship. Meanwhile, Charlie watches the security monitors and sees a wounded man calling for help. He temporarily disables the system to allow the man inside, but James races to re-engage the system and holds the man at gunpoint. Henry comes downstairs and points a pistol at James and opens fire, but then James returns fire and mortally wounds Henry. During the chaos, the stranger disappears.
Through the surveillance cameras, the family sees a gang of masked, heavily armed people arriving at the front lawn. The leader demands the homeless man, warning that failure to comply will result in an invasion. When Mary asks about the security system, James admits it is incapable of withstanding a determined assault. The family find and capture the stranger to give him to the gang, only to realize that they would not be any better if they did and choose to defend him and themselves. After the deadline passes, the gang breaks into the house. James fights back and kills several of them before the leader stabs him. Charlie notices the neighbors leaving their homes on the monitors before the neighbors enter and kill the remaining gang members. Elsewhere, Mary is ambushed by two of the Purgers. After Mary is restrained, the female Purger straddles Mary and starts to tickle Mary's ribs, embarrassing her as she begs her to stop. After tickling her some more, she's about to impale Mary with her machete, but the neighbors save her. The leader attempts to kill the family, but is killed by Zoey while James dies from his injuries.
Mary starts to thank the neighbors for saving them, but their leader, Grace Ferrin, reveals her group's hatred for the Sandins due to their wealth being acquired at the neighbors' expense. They capture the Sandins and prepare to kill them, but the stranger returns, kills one of the neighbors, and holds Grace hostage to force them to free the Sandins. Mary stops him from killing the remaining neighbors, deciding that they will all peacefully wait out the remainder of the Purge.
The next morning, Grace attempts to seize control, but Mary wounds her in retaliation. As sirens sound to signal the end of the Purge, she forces the neighbors to leave and thanks the stranger for his help. He bids the Sandins luck before leaving as well.
Television news reports state this year's purge was the most successful to date. Other stations report that the stock market is booming due to the massive sales of weapons and security systems. A man’s voice speaks of the loss of his patriotism after the death of his sons the night before.
The Sandin familyEdit
- Ethan Hawke as James Sandin
- Lena Headey as Mary Sandin
- Max Burkholder as Charlie Sandin
- Adelaide Kane as Zoey Sandin
- Arija Bareikis as Grace Ferrin
- Tom Yi as Mr. Cali
- Chris Mulkey as Mr. Halverson
- Tisha French as Mrs. Halverson
- Dana Bunch as Mr. Ferrin
- Rhys Wakefield as Polite Leader
- John Weselcouch as Interrupting Freak Purger
- Alicia Vela-Bailey as Blonde Female Freak Purger
- Mickey Facchinello as Brunette Freak Purger
- Boima Blake as Freak Purger
- Nathan Clarkson as Freak Purger
- Jesse Jacobs as Freak Purger
- Aaron Kuban as Freak Purger
- Chester Lockhart as Freak Purger
- Tyler Osterkamp as Freak Purger
- R. J. Wolfe as Freak Purger
The film premiered at the Stanley Film Festival on May 2, 2013, and released in cinemas on June 7, 2013, in the United States. In its opening weekend, The Purge topped the box office with $16.8 million on opening day and $34.1 million through the entire weekend. The film earned $64.5 million domestically and $24.9 million outside the United States, for a total of $89.3 million worldwide, with a production budget of $3 million.
Rotten Tomatoes reports an approval rating of 39% based on 156 reviews and a weighted average of 5.20/10. The site's critics consensus reads, "Half social allegory, half home-invasion thriller, The Purge attempts to make an intelligent point, but ultimately devolves into numbing violence and tired clichés." The film holds a score of 41 out of 100 on Metacritic, based on 33 critics, signifying "mixed or average reviews".
On io9, Charlie Jane Anders described it as "a clunky and implausible political screed in movie form". Entertainment Weekly gave The Purge a B−, saying that it "clearly has a lot on its mind, but it never really manages to express it".
Sequels and prequelEdit
Due to the success of the first film, a sequel, The Purge: Anarchy, was developed by Universal and Blumhouse. It was released worldwide on July 18, 2014 and is set in 2023, a year after the first film. Edwin Hodge (The Stranger), Tyler Osterkamp (The Freak), and Nathan Clarkson (The Purger) were the only cast members to reprise their role, while only Hodge was credited.
A third film, The Purge: Election Year, was released on July 1, 2016. A fourth film, The First Purge, which is set as a prequel in the franchise, was released on July 4, 2018. Ethan Hawke reprises his role as James Sandin in the opening scene of "7:01am", the series finale of The Purge television series. A fifth film, The Forever Purge, was released on July 2, 2021.
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