Tag Archives: The Purge

The Purge: Anarchy: Features

For some reason unbeknown to me, I have always wanted to watch ‘The Purge’ films. Whether it is the storyline or the conversations of people asking, “What would you do if all crime was legal for one night?”, I have always wanted to watch them but have been too scared. After speaking to friends, I was told that “The Purge: Anarchy” is the least scary. Because of this, and it’s recent arrival on Netflix, I decided to be brave and watch it. The Purge: Anarchy was released in 2014 and has been categorised as an American, dystopian, action, horror film directed by James DeMonaco. Here is the trailer…

  • The Purge: Anarchy has a fairly cold colour palette. The colour palette is mainly focussed around colours such as blues and purples. These are colours often associated with negativity and sadness; this arguably sets the tone of the film as the audience are made to feel uncomfortable. However, some shots have a warm colour palette based on colours such as yellow and orange. These colours are used in the daylight when the purge has not yet commenced. Therefore, the warm colours display the safety in comparison to the dark and cold colours that display danger.
  • As the tension and action increases, so does the pace of the shots. Because of this, when the shots speed up, the audience know that something bad is going to happen. Therefore, whenever the shots speed up the audience feel tense and uncomfortable as they are unaware of the upcoming events. However, in some areas of the film, the slower paced shots also build large amounts of tension as it forebodes that something is not right and something bad is about to happen… the calm before the storm.
  • The whole storyline of The Purge: Anarchy is based on murder in a dystopian world. However, the fact that the film has been set in modern day America allows the audience to believe that the film is real and so allows them to empathise more with the characters as they feel nervous and uncomfortable also. The constant murder also allows the audience to feel on edge and uncomfortable throughout the entire film.
  • Masks are used throughout the film in order to create a sense of discomfort and fear. The masks themselves are scary however, the fact that the identity of that character is hidden allows you to feel much more nervous. This is because you are unaware of their capabilities and expressions. You can not clearly see their eyes and so actions made by these characters are highly unexpected which therefore makes the audience feel on edge throughout the whole film.
  • The isolation on the streets is emphasised by the empty buildings and dimly lit streets. The audience feel sympathy for those trapped outside as their fate will most probably be the end of their lives. The fact that people on the inside of secure buildings are also unsafe allows the audience to feel fear as it creates a sense that they themselves are not safe.
  • Throughout the film, diegetic sounds such as news reports, a countdown, gunfire, screaming and shouting are all emphasised and amplified. This emphasises the fact that these people are isolated and also shocks the audience. The constant update of news reports adds a sense of reality to the film and leaves the audience wanting the time period to be over just as much as the characters within the film!
  • The non diegetic soundtrack matches the pace of the film throughout. Often, quiet music is used in order to create suspense and tension before a larger event. The faster paced music could resemble the fast heart rate of the characters, and maybe audience, and also keeps the audience hooked and full of adrenaline.

Although this film left me wondering what would actually happen if this became a reality, I really enjoyed it. I shall take notice of the various features and try to include them in my two minute opening in order to improve the quality of it.

The Purge: Anarchy Opening

In order to get an accurate idea into the structure of film openings, Emelia and I watched a few two minute film openings and decided to create timelines. By creating timelines, we could note down the various features, when they appeared and how long they lasted for. From doing this, we hope to have a better idea of the form and structure of film openings. Hopefully, this extra knowledge will help us to create an accurate and believable film opening. Due to our previous pre-production work, Emelia and I have already chosen our genre. Due to this, we have decided to look into the openings of thriller films only as this way we will know the specific features and how to relate them to the thriller genre.

Firstly, I watched the beginning to ‘The Purge: Anarchy’. This is an American thriller directed by James DeMonaco. I chose this film opening to analyse first as I felt the structure of the various idents and logos was fairly clear.

00:00:00 – 00:00:24 : Firstly, the Universal logo sequence plays. Over the top of this, a non-diegetic, tense and sinister composed score plays; this adds tension and immediately indicates what genre the upcoming film will belong to.  The sequence then fades to black.

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00:00:25 – 00:00:40 : The next ident sequence then plays for ‘BH Productions’. Over this, the same dark score is played; this connects the two and further builds tension. The sequence then once again fades to black.

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00:00:41 – 00:00:53 : The final company logo sequence occurs. The company is ‘Platinum Dunes’. The same score is played; however, it is less busy and more eerie. The sequence then once again fades to black.

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00:00:56 – 00:01:09 : The film then begins. However, an opening scene does not immediately begin. First, facts are given to give background and understanding to the film. The composed score is now fairly simple. This simplicity adds tension. This scene then fades to black.

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00:01:11 – 00:01:19 : The title of the film, ‘The Purge: Anarchy’, then suddenly appears. The composition’s dynamics increase as the title appears and then decrease as the sequence proceeds. This is a shock and draws attention to the title.

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00:01:23 – 00:01:31 : Then, the opening shows the time and date of the following scene. It also mentions the major event that will occur further on in the film. The eerie composed score continues to play and the scene fades to black.

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00:01:35 : Fade in to the opening scene. This scene begins with a close up and then shows a wide shot. There are emphasised diegetic sounds such as money and footsteps.

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00:01:49 : The diegetic sound of the news on the television begins; this introduces the upcoming major event in the film and builds tension.

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