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Movie Review: 'The First Purge' Gory But Good

by Todd A. Smith

 

Jovian Wade and Lex Scott Davis (L-R) star in “The First Purge” (Photo Credit: Universal Pictures).

 

The Beginnings 

 


Hollywood, please do not give President Donald Trump any “brilliant” ideas with “The First Purge.”


The prequel, “The First Purge” is ruthlessly brutal and violent with nothing to set it apart from its predecessors.


However, it is still an enjoyable film, especially for those who like the horror and gangster genres.


Sure, in modern day real-life America, people struggle with the same issues presented in “The First Purge.”


Overpopulation.


Unemployment.


Violence.


Civil unrest.


But is population control really the answer to some of America’s problems?


And what part of the population would the government try to control in an effort to downsize?


The answer is probably obvious to anyone with a brain.


No matter what is true or not, society’s ills are usually blamed on the have not’s and people of color.


People will say crime is always higher in the inner cities.


People will say crime is something associated with minorities.


People will say that people of a lighter hue do not have problems finding a job, so why should people of darker complexions struggle to find work?


There must be something wrong with them, not something wrong with the way American society and government is structured.


So, if we get rid of the have not’s, then that’s a major benefit for the haves.


The rich will get richer.


And the poor will get killed, not poorer.


In “The First Purge,” the rich want to get just that while the poor struggle to figure out the purpose of the experimental purge in the first place.


The first purge starts off as a monumental experiment from the leaders of the New Founding Fathers Party (NFFP), a third major political party that somehow manages to seize power from both the Democrats and the Republicans.


To solve many of the problems of the disenfranchised, they propose the purge that will give people a way to vent their frustrations against a society that some see responsible for high crime rates, high unemployment and high rates of opioid addiction.


For one night, all crimes will be legal and forgiven for anyone participating in the purge.


Furthermore, those who participate in the purge will get compensated financially, which should help those struggling below the poverty line to make ends meet for the time being.


There is only one caveat to the purge.


The first purge will only take place on the borough of Staten Island, N.Y.


Those who wish to not participate can leave the borough at any time prior to commencement of the festivities.


Those who wish to stay on Staten Island, but do not want to participate, will receive $5,000 for staying put.


From the beginning, many residents and activists see something peculiar with the purge.


Why did the NFFP choose Staten Island as opposed to Manhattan, N.Y., Beverly Hills, Calif. or South Beach in Miami?


After all, their only mission is population control, right?


Or is the NFFP’s motive more sinister, discriminatory and more evil than it possibly can look on the surface alone?


If and when Staten Islanders find out the real motive of the NFFP, will it be too late to stop the irreversible damage from happening?


In “The First Purge,” Nya (Lex Scott Davis) is trying desperately to raise her younger brother Isaiah (Jovian Wade) with very few resources in the Park Hill Towers of Staten Island, N.Y.


Despite the existence of negative influence all around the towers, Nya tries to be a positive example and keep Isiah off the streets.


However, when Isaiah is supposed to be at school, he is selling drugs on the corner for Dmitri’s (Y’lan Noel) neighborhood gang.


Although neighborhood drug dealers have no shortage of female admirers, Dmitri has his eyes on Nya, a neighborhood activist who has no interest in Dmitri because of his criminal activity.


When Nya finds out that Isaiah has been ditching school to work the corner for Dmitri’s organization she is outraged.


Selling drugs has gotten Isaiah physically assaulted by Skeletor (Rotimi Paul) and that assault has him seeking revenge during purge night.


“The First Purge” will resonate with fans because it combines to proven film genres into one film.

Gangster film fans will love the storyline of Dmitri and his crew.


The film does a good job of presenting the gang and drug culture without glorifying it.


“The First Purge” does not glamorize street life, but presents it as a means to an end for people who do not have many other choices.


Additionally, the movie has some spine tingling scary scenes as well thanks to Skeletor’s psychotic behind.


Almost by himself, Skeletor brings enough terror on the night of the purge that it probably does not matter if most people choose not to participate.


Skeletor has so much hatred and evil in his heart that he might purge the entire borough himself.


Furthermore, with Isaiah seeking out Skeletor and Skeletor surging Staten Island for Isaiah, an explosive conclusion is bound to happen.


Unfortunately for “The First Purge,” the prequel does not cover any new ground and it’s not unique enough to increase the fan following of the franchise.


The film simply shows how the concept of the purge began for the NFFP, which might not have been necessary.


Fans of the franchise kind of already knew why the event started in the first place without a prequel.


Furthermore, the violence in “The First Purge” is just gruesome.


Violent films have been the norm in Hollywood for decades, but this prequel is excruciatingly violent and might be too violent for some.


Please, leave your babies at home for this one.


But the violence is part of the horror necessary for the film.


However, nothing might be scarier than the purge actually taking place in modern American society.


If the current White House and Supreme Court will purge families and voter rolls respectively, they might get the idiotic idea to actually purge Americans.


The crazy thing is that, President Trump’s worshippers or voters will probably go with that idea because like Trump he could kill someone in broad daylight and his followers would still support him.


Some supporters will probably think purging is necessary to make America great again.

 

If that is great, I hope American never reaches that level of “greatness.”



REGAL RATINGS

FOUR CROWNS=EXCELLENT

THREE CROWNS=GOOD

TWO CROWNS=AVERAGE

ONE CROWN=POOR


This article was published on Wednesday 04 July, 2018.
Current Comments: 0
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