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Weekend Ruiner is devoted to helping you find the saddest and/or grossest and/or most disturbing of movies, you know, to like, ruin your weekend or whatever. (Sorry.)

For our weekend ruining purposes, we have defined a film that does such as one that is “sad” and/or “gross” and/or “disturbing.” The Purge should be all of these things, but it is actually none of them (in a conventional sense). Why, then, is it a weekend ruiner? Because the idea that such a great concept (WITH a masssssive budget) could still produce such a not-great (read: shit) film, is disturbing in its own right.

So here’s the deal. I never saw that trailer conveniently located above this sentence. In fact, I had never heard of The Purge until advertisements for the sequel started lining the walls of the Union Square train station. I found the advertisements for The Purge: Anarchy to be so compelling that I actually watched that trailer first. This one:

After watching it I thought: “I’m gonna look up the book this was based off of.” Pleasantly surprised to find it was not based off a book—it was an original film—AND that it had a prequel. “I’m gonna watch the fuck out that prequel,” I thought. That’s when things got bad. In case you’re unfamiliar, here’s the premise: Everything is great in America (bear with me). Unemployment? ALL TIME LOW. Crime? ALL. TIME. LOW. Why? CAUSE OF “THE PURGE.” It’s an annual 12-hour period in which all crime is legal—even the gross kinds. No emergency services, no rules, just killin’ folks.

C’mon, dudes.

That. Idea. Is. So. Cool.

Like, having heard that concept and nothing else re: tangible terribleness of this film, I was stoked. Think of the possibilities; It’s exciting. But then I parked my ass, found a torrent, and sat through ~1 1/2 hours of The Purge. All excitement squashed and replaced, instead, with a few feelings. Here they are:

  • Disappointed, because it sucked.
  • Bored, because watching it was a boring thing that I did.
  • Disturbed. Because HOW EVEN can you fuck up a film with a concept that good, that bad?

I will not receive an answer to that last question, so I’m just gonna answer it myself. The reason The Purge was so bad despite the killer (lol) concept, was because they did not use it. There was no backstory and no exploration into how the purge came to be and why/how it’s so effective—I mean they didn’t leave the damn house the entire film. They came up with an original dystopian society-type premise, but the film barely touched on it. Instead, it was like any other bad scary movie in which the killers are coming from inside the house and *boring*, *boring*, *boring*.

I will, however, watch the sequel and hope for the best. Because they can’t make two terrible films from the same amazing (IMO) premise. (I hope.)