Movie review of “The Purge: Election Year”: Frank Grillo returns as a Secret Service agent trying to protect a presidential candidate (Elizabeth Mitchell) in the biggest, baddest, berserkest Purge so far. Rating: 3.5 stars out of 4.

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“The Purge,” 2013’s low-budget home-invasion horror hit, found its breakout star in The Purge itself: an annual 12-hour bloodbath of government-sanctioned mayhem. In this dystopian near-future, the New Founding Fathers of America have instituted the contained lawlessness in order to keep crime, and the population, in check. The 2014 sequel, “The Purge: Anarchy,” liberated audiences from the confines of a single home and let the action loose into the streets of murderous chaos.

That film’s breakout star, the brooding Frank Grillo, is a Purge angel of sorts. His character, Leo, is back in “The Purge: Election Year,” which is the biggest, baddest, berserkest Purge so far. James DeMonaco has written and directed all three films, maintaining a consistency of tone and style, including bits of humor and cartoonish weirdness among the grim and terrifying possibilities.

The film reflects the historic nomination of Hillary Clinton with a blond upstart presidential candidate, Sen. Charlie Roan (Elizabeth Mitchell), fighting against the NFFA establishment. She’s running on an anti-Purge platform, arguing that it unjustly wipes out the lower-class population, who are unable to afford the secure fortresses of the rich, while the NRA and insurance companies reap the profits.

Movie Review ★★★½  

‘The Purge: Election Year,’ with Frank Grillo, Elizabeth Mitchell, Mykelti Williamson, Betty Gabriel. Written and directed by James DeMonaco. 105 minutes. Rated R for disturbing bloody violence and strong language. Several theaters.

Leo now serves as Charlie’s protective Secret Service agent and is a Purge angel once again when they find themselves outside on Purge Night, pursued by neo-Nazi special forces.

These films are overtly political, “Election Year” even more so. The message here about racial and economic inequality is relevant and accessible. But the heart of the trilogy is ultimately deeply human. Our heroes fight to save individual lives among the mass death. They face a classic activist conundrum: Is it worth your values to take up the tools of the master? One can’t be against the Purge and also purge, even if you’re purging oppressors. The question of the film is not a political one but a moral, ethical, humane one.

“The Purge: Election Year” provides all that on its wild ride of blood-soaked anarchy.