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The Purge 4-Movie Collection: The Purge, The Purge: Anarchy, The Purge: Election Year, The First Purge (2013-2018)

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The First Purge

4 beers

“Blessed be the New Founders! Blessed be the new America!”

The Tea Party, born out of frustration from having their conservative voices and agenda ignored, are now in power.  What a difference five long years make!  When the original film was made, the premise still seemed like fantasy.  It no longer does.  The Purge with its pro-violence, pro-family, pro-gun stance offered up a snake-like criticism of a government – ran by large corporations – that allows a one day only, 12-hour purge of any amount of violence thought possible, without repercussions.

That’s right, according to writer/director James DeMonaco’s original movie, one day a year the police force simply shuts down and lets all hell break loose in the streets.  Less government means more freedom, you see.  That’s what the Tea Partiers want.  It’s completely up to the individual to protect his or her family from attack.  No one will stand in your way.  The government encouraging gun ownership and violence? 

This B-minded series is all about violence but it feels like a social experiment timestamped circa 1975.  It’s raw and, perhaps inspired by the success of Get Out, goes all-in with the hate that is bubbling on today’s surface and the gang-banging ways of the 1990s.


Sounds like a Tea Party orgy to me.  Except it wasn’t.  The original film was biting satire.  What has followed continues to be damn good social commentary because somewhere along the line, maybe with The Purge: Anarchy, the series – as the Tea Partiers found roots in spread in the Republican wing of our democracy – took it to the next level.  In Anarchy, a new organization whose leader (Michael K. Williams) wants to wage war against the New Founding Fathers and their continued abuses against the lower class. He calls them racists, fascists, and every other name under the sun. His mission to overthrow the 12-hours might be in vain but, in a world of corporate takeover, it seems downright believable.

Because usually, the targets of Purge night are the homeless; the druggies; the undesirable elements in society.  Every loyal American is encouraged to participate by taking out the least among them.  The more the merrier, after all.  And, if you are carrying a weapon for protection then, chances are, no one is going to mess with you.  RIGHT.

A certain suspension of belief has to be involved in order to accept the fact that some kind of NRA-type agency has taken over the country.  Wait.  No, it doesn’t.  This is America.  We love our guns like we love our cars.  While much of the series’ events are open to interpretation, there’s too much in it to see it as anything but a criticism of America as the Good Samaritan it isn’t.  Little wonder then, that the series continues to be eviscerated critically by the media.

Except NOW we have a damn good television series based on the movie; something in this mythology has taken root.  And this is where The Purge gets a lot of its terror from: a future of this sort isn’t that far out of the realm of possibility.  In many ways, we are already there.purge anarchy lg

Trayvon Martin anyone?  School shootings?  I could go on.  The point is that we are backsliding into a kill or be killed mentality and there is no other film series explaining how this is happening.  The Purge is the lone voice.

Families held in cages.  Children ripped from their mothers.  Asylum seekers treated as criminals. And one hell of a 12-hour period of time in which ANYTHING heinous is permitted.  If you think that it is not possible in today’s America, then you aren’t paying attention.  Americans HATE.  It is the new hope, I guess. 

The truth is that there is a new civil war brewing thanks to Trump, his law-breaking, racist cronies, and the fall of the middle class and The Purge, which has ALWAYS been political, is practically bursting at the seams to tackle Trump’s version of America.  The landscape, as depicted here under a government that is neither Democrat or Republican, is damned real. 

This B-minded series is all about violence but it feels like a social experiment timestamped circa 1975.  It’s raw and, perhaps inspired by the success of Get Out, goes all-in with the hate that is bubbling on today’s surface and the gang-banging ways of the 1990s.  Cherry-picked, sure, but it largely works.  The First Purge

To its credit, The Purge has been almost alone in its attempts to bring back the slasher genre of horror films.  Mostly, fans get a wicked sense of the supernatural, but not so in The Purge, where the threat feels grounded and oh so very real that most of the series is like watching Headline News. Rape, murder, theft, and here’s the weather report!  But things get political fast.  There’s no avoiding it and The First Purge is no different.  Cartoonish, yes, but also damn right.

And that’s some truly scary (and startling) shit.  Fiction is being fact.  So much so, that some critics out there are bound to suggest that this film is grasping at straws as the 12-hour period of anarchy breaks out across the nation.  Sounds crazy, I know, but, watch the news, there is so much anger and frustration out there that, yes, it certainly does feel like we are at a tipping point.

Almost 400-minutes of The Purge?  Go ahead.  Get political.  Mid-terms are close anyway.  Time to get those hands bloody.

The First Purge

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Universal Studios
Available on Blu-ray
- October 2, 2018
Screen Formats: 2.40:1
Subtitles
: English SDH, French, Spanish
Audio:

The First Purge
English: DTS:X
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1
Spanish: DTS 5.1
French (Canada): DTS 5.1

The Purge
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
French: DTS 5.1
Spanish: DTS 5.1

The Purge: Anarchy
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Spanish: DTS 5.1
French: DTS 5.1

The Purge: Election Year
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Spanish: DTS 5.1
French: DTS 5.1

Discs: Blu-ray Disc; four-disc set; movies anywhere digital copy
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Universal Home Entertainment presents all four films with four nicely-detailed widescreen 1080p transfers with DTS-HD Master 7.1 Audio.  Captured in 1080p, the blues and blacks of the color tone are intense and full of supple detail as well as the deep shadows on the streets and in the houses.  Colors are dynamic and hold their shape in shadow.  Blues are cool and rich, too.  The constant splattering and splash of crimson blood casts a new color onto the screen.  Contrast is sharp and reveals great depth and detail.  The DTS-HD MA 7.1 lossless soundtrack is so rich in design that it damn near breathes.  With sonic kicks and punches, Universal offers a whole new level of excitement into the film simply with the element of sound.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • None

Special Features:

Porting over everything that has been offered before, Universal adds to the supplemental material with only NEW featurettes involving The First Purge, the latest in the series.

The Purge

Surviving the Night: The Making of The Purge

 

The Purge: Anarchy

Behind the Anarchy

Deleted Scenes

 

The Purge:  Election Year

Character Spotlight: Leo

Inside The Purge

Deleted Scenes

 

The First Purge

A Radical Experiment

Bringing the Chaos

The Masks

Deleted Scenes

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