The premise for The Purge sounds a bit daft, but the result could be quite interesting, with Ethan Hawke as a father who has to protect his family from all manner of threats over a 12-hour period. The reason for that is that in a near-future America wracked by crime and overcrowded prisons, the government has sanctioned an annual 12-hour period in which any and all criminal activity – including murder – becomes legal.
The police can’t be called. Hospitals suspend help. It’s one night when the citizenry regulates itself without thought of punishment. On this night plagued by violence and an epidemic of crime, one family wrestles with the decision of who they will become when a stranger comes knocking. When an intruder breaks into James Sandin’s (Ethan Hawke) gated community during the yearly lockdown, he begins a sequence of events that threatens to tear a family apart. Now, it is up to James, his wife, Mary (Lena Headey), and their kids to make it through the night without turning into the monsters from whom they hide.
It’s a film that seems to want to make a political point, although we’ll have to wait and see how right or left wing it’s going to lean.