Time for you all to get your Grillo on, folks!
The veteran action star has returned for another night of Purging. The third film in the series centers on the upcoming election and Frank Grillo’s ex-cop has joined the team of Elizabeth Mitchell’s idealistic Presidential candidate, Charlene Roan. She wants to end the Purge, and that means a lot of fellow Washington suits and other groups want her gone. So it’s up to Grillo’s Leo Barnes to save the day again. He has a little help though, in the form of Mykelti Williamson and other Roan supporters.
While the original Purge was entertaining and different, it lacked that distinct must see quality. The Purge: Anarchy brought that to the table, taking the hunt and survival game to the streets. It also informed the rest of the world about Grillo, one of the hardest working hustlers in the business. At the crisp yet subtle age of 52 years young, Grillo is showing these other wannabe action stars how it is done. He’s authentic and that is what separated the sequel from the original.
The third film has a witty twist to it, jumping ahead to the present and putting a female candidate at the forefront. The third film wasn’t a given, but something Grillo and director James DeMonaco decided to do again. Grillo elaborated in our chat last month, “They weren’t planning on doing another one. The second one surprised everybody. (James) DeMonaco and I looked at each other. He said, “You want to do another one?” I said I would if he would, and that’s how it all began.”
The Purge: Election Year takes Grillo’s character, Leo Barnes, from a street avenger in Anarchy to a man with a new lease on life. “You basically get a knowledge of why they called him Sergeant and he goes back to what he was doing before the second film, based off the events of “Anarchy”. You also see from a political standpoint what the purge is really about.”
There’s also an unlikely and completely fortuitous link to Donald Trump in the film. “It’s funny because the film parallels this thing going on with Donald Trump and the election. There’s a character really similar to Trump in the film and it’s by complete accident.”
There are plenty of sequels that shouldn’t happen or merely happen to serve a profit(looking at you Saw franchise). Others, like this one, are made because the audience demanded it and because there is an ability to combine guilty pleasure action and world weary fear.
And, Frank Grillo is involved. The Purge: Election Year arrives on July 4th. Show some self respect and watch The Purge: Anarchy on demand, on Itunes, on DVD or via a neighbor’s goodwill. Trust me it will be worth it.