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Blu-ray Review: The Purge: Election Year
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The Purge: Election Year banner

The Purge: Election Year
Blu-ray Combo Pack | DVD | Digital HD
Director: James DeMonaco
Writer: James DeMonaco
Cast: Elizabeth Mitchell, Frank Grillo, Mykelti Williamson, Terry Serpico, Betty Gabriel, Joseph Julian Soria, Kyle Secor
Studio: Universal Pictures Home Entertainment
Release Date: October 4, 2016

The Purge: Election Year is the third installment in four years for the Purge franchise and in my opinion is the best so far. Where the first one was a home invasion movie, and the second was a stilted revenge movie, the third entry is all political thriller dripping with socio-economic commentary. Again written and directed by James DeMonaco, The Purge: Election Year focuses on Senator Charlie Roan (Elizabeth Mitchell) who promises, if elected, to end the yearly night of guiltless violence and murder. This obviously makes her a target for the corrupt “new” founding fathers who want to preserve their political and economic dominance.

Returning for part three is Leo Barnes (Frank Grillo), the anti-hero/hero of The Purge: Anarchy. He was a vengeance-seeking Purge participant when part two began, but now he’s back to his old job, working security detail for the Senator. Of course right when Purge night begins, Roan’s house is attacked and she and Leo are forced to venture out into the abyss where Purge activities are commencing as usual. The Blu-Ray/DVD combo pack comes loaded with special features including 8 minutes of deleted scenes, including an extended Purge night montage.

There is a five and a half minute mini-documentary, “Inside The Purge,” featuring interviews with the cast, director James DeMonaco, and Producer Jason Blum from Blumhouse. One thing is for sure, watching it, the cast really loves their director. Grillo, Mitchell, and co-star Kyle Secor all wax poetic about DeMonaco and his directorial style. DeMonaco talks about shifting the theme here from a horror movie about surviving the night to a movie about the nation surviving the Purge years. Cast member Edwin Hodge discusses the Purge in relation to modern day America and says what we’re all thinking: “The idea is extreme, but not far-fetched.” DeMonaco jokes at the end that his original script for The Purge would have been rated “100 X” and so these movies are actually him under control. This was a really good behind the scenes look at the film.

Finally there is a character spotlight on Frank Grillo’s Leo Barnes. DeMonaco calls Grillo a legit tough guy and they discuss all the hard work he put into the role. On the stunts, Grillo said, “There were twice as many and they were twice as hard.” He did most of his own stunts, including the hand to hand fighting. This included a huge 90-second knife fight with co-star Terry Serpico that took 10 hours practice/5 hours to film. Yikes!

The Blu-ray Combo Pack also comes with a DVD edition, and a code for the Digital download.

The Purge: Election Year Blu-ray cover

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