Grade • C-
DVD • “The Purge” starts with a great “Twilight Zone”-like premise, but then drowns in needlessly bloody violence.
In the near future, America’s crime problem has been supposedly solved with an annual 12-hour period in which all laws, including murder, are void.
James Sandin (Ethan Hawke) and his family opt to hunker down in their gated community, with the same type of high-tech security system he sold to the neighbors. Then James’ son Charlie (Max Burkholder) lets in a homeless black man (Edwin Hodge) seeking refuge from young punks, who then lay siege to the house.
Writer-director James DeMonaco has trouble maintaining the script’s moral dilemma, opting instead for knee-jerk violence.