Critic Reviews



Based on 31 critic reviews provided by
DeMonaco has further upped his game with the third installment by working closely with franchise cinematographer Jacques Jouffret to design rewardingly more complex action sequences and well-focused set pieces that are both efficiently executed and visually engaging.
You’d think the concept would now be wearing thin, but Election Year, which feels like the final chapter in a the best “Purge” film yet. The action is excitingly sustained in a way that it wasn’t in the previous two, and the political dimension, while crude as hell, exerts a brute-force entertainment value.
Grillo is exactly the right man for this role, the thoughtful tough guy who can pull bullets out of his own body and who always looks like he needs a shower, but who can’t stop for such indulgences until he knows everyone else is safe. And the ensemble around him forms a tight, empathic unit. We want the Purge to keep going; we also want this crew to smack it down hard.
The film’s comical bluntness could also be construed as off putting, but to criticize that is to deprive yourself the joy of such pulp. And this is pulp, from the brazenness of its violence to the dull bite of its clunky dialogue. What Election Year offers isn’t nuanced satire, but rather a kind of catharsis, a release that’s not so far off from what the Purge itself purports to provide.
If, on the other hand, it’s sleazy kicks you’re after, you’ll be in exploitation heaven. Because writer-director James DeMonaco’s third chapter in the thrill-kill vigilante franchise is the best and pulpiest Purge yet.
The Film Stage
DeMonaco has his finger on the pulse of our struggle and has found a way to put it onscreen as all good horror does. Sure he and Jason Blum are making money, but you cannot deny they aren’t also forcing us to acknowledge the social science at play.
In theory, Election Year offers a form of catharsis from contemporary anxieties by turning them into entertainment. Instead, this latest entry in a ridiculous franchise has become a victim of its own sick joke.
There’s not a lot of nuance or sense in the third “Purge” movie. But it still manages to coast on a combination of self-awareness, crowd-pleasing carnage and a plot that ties perfectly into current events.
Slant Magazine
Its greater focus on disreputable genre thrills comes at the expense of making coherent points about class inequalities, political exploitation, or man's inhumanity.
After three disturbingly violent films, this may be a concept that deserves to be purged.

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