“The Purge” movies have always been sci-fi — even the prequel film is set in the future — but the future looks a lot like it does in the present; there aren’t a lot of high-tech devices in the “Purge” movies, and there’s little talk of, say, colonizing space, encountering aliens, or advanced medicine. By James DeMonaco’s measure, the future will likely only see a devolution of our hate and resentment to the point of legally waived slaughter. By that measure, he compares his script for a sixth “Purge” movie to the politically flavored sci-fi thrillers of the 1960s and 1970s. He even name-checks a few titles, saying:
“‘Purge 6′ is my way of looking at the country now. I grew up watching ‘Logan’s Run’ and ‘Soylent Green’ and John Carpenter and George Romero, whose sociopolitical messaging was within the films. They were smuggling ideas into the film. So for me for ‘6,’ I was extrapolating on the discord and taking it to its furthest, as far as you can take that idea of what’s going on, I feel, in the country and the political landscape. And it’s a broken America.”
Michael Anderson’s “Logan’s Run” was set in a future where the scant remaining members of humanity survived in vast, high-tech pleasure domes wherein all their food and sex were provided for free. But when a citizen turns 30, they are summarily executed. Richard Fleicher’s 1973 film “Soylent Green” took place in a future where food was in short supply, save for government-distributed soylent crackers. Soylent green tasted like meat. You likely know what it’s made from. John Carpenter’s and George A. Romero’s works also typically contain anti-fascist messages analyzing racism and consumerism. Watch “They Live” or “Dawn of the Dead” sometime and dare to say differently.