Purge Parody – Meet the Blacks (2016)

Kind of hard to believe this got made.  So this is a universe where the purge exists, one night a year where all crime becomes legal for a 12-hour period.  A father (Mike Epps) moves his family out of Chicago to a gated community in Beverly Hills in the hopes of raising the chances of overall safety.  The one thing he didn’t consider was the fact that these mansion owners are even more blood hungry than the people in the Chicago suburbs.  Now I actually like this idea on paper; the modern horror parody nowadays is so jam packed with references that it actually is kind of refreshing to get something contained, even if it is for something as niche as The Purge.  It even has a bit of social commentary, but it isn’t long before it crosses that line of offensive too many times to get a pass.

2Not to be stereotypical, but people who aren’t white usually have more common sense and self-awareness in horror movies.

I like Mike Epps as an actor; he’s got a certain bit of charm in his performances, even though he never landed himself a role that pushed him to true leading man status.  He also knows how to improvise, and while this movie suffers when it is being obtuse and racially offensive, it does work with offhanded comments that you can tell was made up on the spot.  I did get some laughs out of this, and they almost all came from mutterings dished out underneath the breath of Mike Epps.  It is kind of bizarre to see this, just because I don’t know who out there would have thought that this was a good idea.  There just isn’t a demand for it, and I am surprised that anybody ended up seeing this at all, which is probably why it popped up on Netflix streaming so quickly.

1But hey, I’m not the one calling shots on greenlighting projects here.

This isn’t the bottom of the barrel, but it certainly isn’t good.  It’s actually way funnier at the beginning when it does play in the humor that is based on stereotypes.  Meet the Blacks does nothing but lose steam as it goes on, and it really gets bad when it just turns into the movie that it’s parodying.  I don’t know how much you remember about the 2013 film, but it has some truly awful lighting; you can hardly get scared because you can’t tell what is going on.  The same can be said with Meet the Blacks, except there are cynical jokes thrown into the mix.  Add in some pretty random C-list cameos and you have a movie that flounders more than entertains.

Meet the Blacks (2016) **

– Critic for Hire

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