November 30, 2014

The Purge: Anarchy

James DeMonaco, 2014
This sequel to the 2013 film, which was also directed by DeMonaco, focuses on a group of people caught outside in Los Angeles at night in the middle of the annual Purge. The man attempting to lead the group to safety (Frank Grillo) is eager to break away from the group to seek revenge on a man who walked free from a prosecution error.

How does a filmmaker expect you to get behind a group of characters that provide virtually no likability? It's surely the biggest pitfall of the film. Because you don't care about them. The annoying couple. The barely developed pair of women with the ambiguously ailing father. Instead of any maturation, the film becomes an elaborate torture-porn piece displaying a highlight reel of violence. It attempts to build upon the premise of the original Purge film by providing more bullets, a bigger backdrop, but it provides less structure. Maybe DeMonaco needs those four walls. It's like a crippled version of Escape from New York, without Snake Plissken or the surprisingly awesome Carpenter score. The annoyances don't cease with the characters themselves. There's that annoying situation where no bullets seem to hit their target, even though it's high capacity assault rifles firing in a specific direction. The film attempts to explore some class warface issues, but from the second you see the traffic cams in the tractor trailer you get a clear sense of what's going on. The original Purge film was running on a plot that was contained and interesting enough to keep you engaged. And oddly enough it felt like it could have been bigger. Anarchy attempts to go bigger but it's clear that DeMonaco is not the man for the job.

No comments:

Post a Comment