None of the Purge movies are any good. You’d think with a bar set that low, it’d be easy to clear it. Unfortunately not so with The Forever Purge, the newest movie in the ongoing series. It’s hard to find anything good about any of these movies, let alone this one that’s easily the worst of the bunch, but there are a few things that at least make some sense. None of the political garbage of course.
The Purge movies started out with an interesting premise on paper but weren’t able to deliver anything worthwhile. At least at the time, it was just a thriller/horror movie based around a gimmick. Now, over the years it’s become more and more political. I didn’t think it could get worse than Van Jones showing up for a cameo in The First Purge, but The Forever Purge said ‘hold my beer.’
The gimmick of the Purge movies is that once a year for 12 hours straight, all crime is legal, including murder. The idea being supposedly this lets everyone release their pent-up anger to do whatever they want for a night. Allowing the purge has made it so there’s no more crime at all the rest of the year. Again, this sounds like an interesting idea, on paper. The reason I say “on paper,” is because once you finally see it in practice, in the first movie, you realize how stupid it is and would never work.
That’s the one thing about The Forever Purge that makes any sense, more so than any of the other movies. It doesn’t work. In this we follow two families, one is rich and white that owns a ranch. The others are Mexican and poor. The movie hits you in the face with a baseball bat with its politics from start to finish. It’s by far the most insufferable of all the Purge movies when it comes to that and it is your typical Hollywood political rhetoric.
Josh Lucas is the head of the household that owns the ranch. He seems to hate the Mexicans, which makes you wonder why he hired them, but that’s what you’re supposed to believe racists do. Lucas is a decent actor and plays this part as well as can be expected. He has an arc, so I can’t fault it too much. It’s just that the movie is constantly beating you over the head about evil white people.
Will Patton plays Lucas’ father who apparently also works the ranch. He’s more understanding of the workers and isn’t racist. He’s a nice guy. Back in the 90s, Patton was one of my favorite actors. He kept showing up in things and did great with the characters he played. He’s decent enough in this I guess, like Lucas, as good as can be expected.
Tenoch Huerta and Ana de la Reguera are husband and wife, He works on the ranch and is convinced that Lucas hates him because he’s Mexican. His wife works for a meatpacking company or something. Both families do their own thing when the purge happens. Everything goes smoothly. No major incidents, and the sirens sound for the end of the purge. Everyone lives. However, that’s just the beginning.
People decide that the purge doesn’t end at 7 am anymore. It never ends. It is now a… forever purge. Sorry, I had to do it.
This is the one thing that makes sense. Of course, people would just keep murdering and committing whatever crimes. This is a large reason the whole purging idea could never work. The first purge would have turned out this way.
Anyway, some ranch hands take part in the continued purge and attack Lucas’ family. Huerta comes to help and saves them. Long story kind of short, both families flee together and head to Mexico. Why? Because the US is screwed and the purge has taken over the whole country, led by a group calling themselves Now & Forever.
That’s right, a group of people got together and planned this out. They want to keep the purge going forever. Why, you ask? Well, it appears to be, according to the movie, because they’re white and racist of course. They want to take out anyone that isn’t a natural, red-blooded American. One of the main baddies literally had a red armband on. It’s not a Nazi armband, but the movie isn’t subtle, it smacks you constantly with its messaging.
There’s so much more I could get into, but it’s all political garbage and some of it I deem as spoilers and I’m anal about spoilers. Let’s just say there are some predictable events that happen that are pretty stereotypical but done in reverse.
The Forever Purge is detestable from start to finish and if that isn’t bad enough, it feels like it takes forever to end. The running time is only about an hour and 40 minutes, but it feels like 3 hours long. It’s not that it has added fat that could be trimmed off, just horrible pacing.
That combined with the unsubtle messaging makes it hard to get through. At the very least the acting is okay and some of the action is well done. Outside that it is easily the worst of the series and one of the worst movies I’ve seen so far this year.
Bottom line, if you don’t want to be beaten down by a political narrative don’t watch The Forever Purge. If you feel you need to watch it because you’ve watched the others, no need. It’s pretty well disconnected from the other movies. The only thing tying it to the series is the purge itself.