Gonzo McNulty’s review published on Letterboxd:
I have a large amount of affection for this franchise despite its status as being •incredibly• uneven in terms of its quality... and even in the face of it trying to shake off what's appealing about it (the b-movie exploitation feel) to focus on its ropier aspects (the iffy and whiffy politicking).
I had a tolerance / sniffing indifference to the first movie - it was what it was as "home invasion" horror flicks go; easy and disposable ☆☆☆ fare that wasted the high concept its sequels would snatch up and run with.
THE PURGE: ANARCHY was a lean, relentless little actioner that worked its nuts off to entertain the shit out of you. It was a solid ode to THE WARRIORS and ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK that played like the TOY STORY 2 of low budget action sequels.
I enjoyed THE PURGE: ELECTION YEAR too as it got the whole exploitation, Glickenhaus-esque B-movie vibe down pat and knew well to keep things pacy in order to distract from the wobbly manner it was exploiting the [then] political climate.
I probably had more affection than most for the recent prequel - but even with that movie, even with flipping backwards to accentuate 'mythology', you could smell the fumes it was running on.
And that brings us to this latest one. The "last" one that's no longer the last one because pandemic-era ticket sales were above Blumhouse's expectations:
Trying to invert the "Mexicans as villains of the week" trope that the likes of RAMBO: LAST BLOOD, SICARIO 2 and WE DIE YOUNG were quick to exploit under Trump's regime, this still manages to be trite and exploitative even on "the other side".
What's worse is that it's kind of... boring, too. In keeping with the recent guarantee of getting a bland film if you cast His Royal Highness King of the Blandness, Josh Lucas, the film is a soapy build into repetitious routine.
Its general construct seems to solely be "America is absolutely FUCKED!" mixed with "Get this - it's THE PURGE: ANARCHY but in •daylight•!" and that's not really enough to carry the fifth movie in a wildly inconsistent series.