The fifth and perhaps final Purge movie is here, appropriately titled The Forever Purge. As each Purge film has shown, there is some gimmick that separates each film with an underlying theme that is very political and social, relating to current news trends in the real world. This fifth film is no different taking its tried and true story of action, torture, and killing, and putting it all into a different setting. The Forever Purge does nothing new really, and if this is indeed the final film of the franchise - it goes out with a whimper rather than a bang that would bring most of the long story arcs to closure. Still, for fans of the franchise for whatever reason floats their boat, there are certain elements to enjoy along the way. For Fans Only.
The gimmick element in each film always worked in its favor featured a set of New Founding Fathers for America enact a law that for twelve consecutive hours each year, there would be a Purge. All crimes, including rape and murder, were legal. The first film played out like a home-invasion story, where a family sheltering in their locked house had to survive the night from people trying to break in and kill them. The second film took the action out of the one single location and into the streets for the carnage in a big city. The timely third film dealt more with contested election politics during an actual Purge quickly followed by a prequel highlighting the events that led to the first-ever Purge. Through all of these scenarios, one thing remained constant - that rich, white men and women were controlling the annual Purge created to destroy and take out minorities across the country.
Now, with the real-life insurrection that happened on January 6th, first-time feature-film director Everardo Gout and series creator and writer James DeMonaco craft a story that fits the bill of those pissed-off folks that stormed the Capitol several months ago. The film opens with a Mexican couple Adela (Ana de la Reguera) and Juan (Tenoch Huerta) escaping from Mexico and entering Texas for a better life. They end up taking jobs on a cattle ranch that is owned by the Tucker family (Josh Lucas, Will Paton, Leven Rambin, and Cassidy Freeman). There is a little racism here, but Adela and Juan keep their feelings to themselves in order to keep their jobs. The Purge commences where the Tucker family sticks inside their house while Adela and Juan go to a safe haven church for protection for the twelve violent hours. And just like that, The Purge is over, the sun is shining, and everyone is happy again. That is until a group of militant, armed, and violent people decide that The Annual Purge will now be The Forever Purge - thus all hell breaks out over the United States.
Now both the Tuckers and their employees, including Adela and Juan must work together to survive and head to the border of Mexico for safety, where along the way the Tuckers realize their differences aren't really that different. It's a little corny here and there, but it's handled in s subtle manner and mostly focuses on the larger-than-normal set pieces of mayhem in this small rural Texas town. It's very easy to see the big similarities between this nationwide faction of bigots and racists who want to "cleanse" the minorities from the USA in this film to the people who committed an act of terrorism and broke into the Capitol and tried to take down the government on January 6th. One would think, there would be some big payoff, being the last film in the franchise that would give some satisfaction, but there really isn't. The film ends just as this element starts and it feels like a let-down.
The Forever Purge has a few places of gore and guts for the horror hounds, but it's nothing that hasn't been done or seen before in these movies. The rural Texas town brings something new to the ballgame, but everything else is business as usual. Fans of the franchise will likely want to see how it all ends, but most will be disappointed. For Fans Only.