A wealthy family is held hostage for harboring the target of a murderous syndicate during the Purge, a 12-hour period in which any and all crime is legal.


James DeMonaco


James DeMonaco
1,952 ( 317)
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Ethan Hawke ... James Sandin
Lena Headey ... Mary Sandin
Max Burkholder ... Charlie Sandin
Adelaide Kane ... Zoey Sandin
Edwin Hodge ... Bloody Stranger
Rhys Wakefield ... Polite Leader
Tony Oller ... Henry
Arija Bareikis ... Mrs. Grace Ferrin
Tom Yi ... Mr. Cali
Chris Mulkey ... Mr. Halverson
Tisha French ... Mrs. Halverson
Dana Bunch Dana Bunch ... Mr. Ferrin
Peter Gvozdas Peter Gvozdas ... Dr. Peter Buynak
John Weselcouch ... Freak Interrupting
Alicia Vela-Bailey ... Female Freak


In an America wracked by crime and overcrowded prisons, the government has sanctioned an annual 12-hour period in which any and all criminal activity-including murder-becomes legal. The police can't be called. Hospitals suspend help. It's one night when the citizenry regulates itself without thought of punishment. On this night plagued by violence and an epidemic of crime, one family wrestles with the decision of who they will become when a stranger comes knocking. When an intruder breaks into James Sandin's (Ethan Hawke) gated community during the yearly lockdown, he begins a sequence of events that threatens to tear a family apart. Now, it is up to James, his wife, Mary (Lena Headey), and their kids to make it through the night without turning into the monsters from whom they hide. Written by Universal Pictures

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Survive the night. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong disturbing violence and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Director James DeMonaco was asked why the film began with footage of multiple purges taking place outdoors - yet he opted to have all purging occur inside one family's home. He responded, "we only had 19 days to shoot and $2.7 million to work with". If he ever got a chance to do a second one, he vowed it would be more like Escape from New York (1981). See more »


The duct tape on the stranger's mouth is alternately tight and loose and also smooth and wrinkled. See more »


Mary Sandin: Just remember all the good the purge does.
See more »


Referenced in 31 Days of Horror: The Purge (2013) (2014) See more »


Clair de Lune
Written by Claude Debussy
Arranged by Alfred Reed
Performed by Symfonický orchester Slovenského rozhlasu (as Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra)
Courtesy of Naxos of America, Inc.
Published by Klams Music & Co, Inc.
See more »

User Reviews

Glad I read the reviews first!
8 June 2013 | by fastfedSee all my reviews

After I bought my ticket online, after being invited by my cousin to go with him, I read the reviews. Disappointed I just spend 17 bucks and everyone gave this movie terrible ratings.

Well, I went in expecting it to be the worst movie ever made (as many said) and what would have been a 5 star rating, which would of been a decent movie, turned out to be a 7, a good/great movie.

Really, I enjoyed it. It wasn't long and the concept and story IMO were great! Not to mention the theater experience with everyone screaming,clapping and laughing helped immensely. If you're on edge and wondering if you should see this movie, I say, if you're bored and go in with no expectations, you will enjoy it a lot.

64 of 125 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
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Release Date:

7 June 2013 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Vigilandia See more »


Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$34,058,360, 9 June 2013

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »

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