The Forever Purge

Any social order requires the compliance of the masses in order to exist; so long as infractions of the law are limited, resources exist to control those elements who refuse to conform. The New Founding Fathers of America wanted an extra safety valve, the Purge, a twelve-hour period once a year where law was suspended and the population could indulge themselves in any way they chose, arson, robbery, murder, with no consequence.

It is eight years since the Purge was discontinued following the victory of President Charlene Roan but another two election cycles have passed and the NFFA’s return to power has led to its full reinstatement; dusk falls and the shutters drop on the compound where Mexican immigrants Adela and Juan have taken shelter, while outside those partaking pull down their masks and arm themselves.

At seven the next morning, the siren sounds the all-clear and they make their way to work, she in food preparation, he a ranch hand for the wealthy Tucker family, the cleanup squads washing the blood from the sidewalks, but for some twelve hours is not enough. At the ranch, another of the workers has taken his benefactors hostage, and Adela is lured into a trap, caged by masked assailants who say that this is the dawn of the Forever Purge.

Astonishingly the fifth film in the sequence, The Forever Purge is perhaps the best since Anarchy broke out, remaining the most politically engaged horror series of modern cinema as it tells its stories through the eyes of an immigrant family fleeing for the border, Mexico and Canada having stated they will hold their borders open as long as possible to accept the influx of refugees as the seeds of poison planted by the NFFA mature to a barbed and venomous harvest.

Directed by Mars‘ Everardo Gout and written by series creator James DeMonaco, The Forever Purge is unremitting and uncomfortable viewing, not just for what it presents, a modern nation in freefall as an organised armed insurgency overwhelms the authorities attempting to maintain law, unable to tell who is antagonist and who is defending themselves, but for what it represents, America unmasked as it could have been had Trump won a second term, “the real patriots” who have taken back what is rightfully theirs from anyone whose skin is not white.

With cities on fire and a civilian population at war, making for the border with its convenient wall to keep out undesirables, like its predecessors The Forever Purge has moments which are derivative, here channelling the desert free-for-all hunt of Mad Max, yet it is an optimistic film, the ensemble of Ana de la Reguera, Tenoch Huerta, Josh Lucas, Cassidy Freeman and Leven Rambin believable as they cross dangerous territory to find safety as America burns on a funeral pyre of its own construction.

The Forever Purge is now on general release



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