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25 Movies Like The Purge

25 Movies Like The Purge

The Purge which was released in 2013, is a dystopian action horror, which was written and directed by James Demonaco. The film stars Ethan Hawke, Lena Headey, and Max Burkholder. The film is about a family whose security system does not hold out when a group of purgers comes knocking.

The Purge is about a family who has to fight against those who wish to purge after the son lets an injured man into their home. The night of the Purge is a period of 12 hours, in a 2022 America where all crime is legal. For the rest of the year, crime is at an all-time low, but not on this night.

The film is part of the eighth highest-grossing horror film franchise and it spawned five movies in total, so if you enjoyed the first, be sure to check out the rest of them. The movie was made on an incredibly modest budget of $3 million but had a box office hit of $89.3 million. Our top picks for similar movies are Truth or Dare (2018), Saw (2004), and Escape Room (2019).   

1. Truth Or Dare

Blumhouse's Truth or Dare

Truth or Dare is a supernatural horror film that was released in 2018 and directed by Jeff Wadlow. The film stars a cast of Lucy Hale, Violett Beane, Tyler Posey, Sophia Taylor Ali, and Hayden Szeto. The film is about a group of college students who engage in a game of truth or dare, while on spring vacation in Mexico, little do they know that the game ends up following them home.

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The critics were not at all impressed with the film and although they donned it as being slick, they found it to be mediocre overall. Audience members felt differently though and the box office reflection was $95.3 million on a budget of only $3.5 million.

Just like in The Purge the individuals in this film find themselves in a state of not being able to escape their pursuers, but in this case it is even more unnerving as the thing chasing them is of another realm.

2. Saw

Saw

Saw is a genuine horror film that was directed by James Wan and released in 2004. This was Wan’s directorial debut and it ended up being the first installment of the Saw franchise. The film stars Leigh Whannell, who also co-wrote, Cary Elwes, and Danny Glover.

The movie is about a pair of strangers who wake up in a dingy room, with no idea how they got there. They soon begin to learn that they are participants in a sadistic game, orchestrated by a serial killer.

The film received mixed reviews from critics, but its minute budget of $1.5 million, saw a return of $103.9 million. If you enjoyed the helplessness of those in The Purge and how they were forced into committing acts they ordinarily wouldn’t do, then this film is a must-see.

3. Escape Room

Escape Room

Escape Room is a psychological horror film that was released in 2019 and directed by Adam Robitel. The film stars Taylor Russell, Deborah Ann Woll, and Tyler Labine. The film follows a small group of people who have to navigate their way through a series of escape rooms, which they soon realize are deadly.

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It was praised for the overall feel of the film and the cast also received a nod from critics, but many felt the plot to be familiar and to have not capitalized on its potential. At the box office, it did well though and made $155.7 million off of a budget of $9 million.

The idea of having to navigate their way around the space, while evading danger, is something that this film has in common with the Purge and the thrills are even better.

4. Ma

Ma

Ma is a psychological horror movie, which was co-written, directed, and produced by Tate Taylor. The film was released in 2019 and is about a group of slightly rebellious teenagers who befriend a middle-aged woman. She allows them to have parties in her basement, but things go from good fun to ugly pretty soon.

The film stars Octavia Spencer, Juliette Lewis, and Diana Silvers. Unfortunately, the film received mixed reviews and was criticized for its pacing, but Spencer’s performance was commended. At the box office, the film did fairly well and made $61.2 million on a budget of $5 million.

This film, like The Purge, starts off with things that seemed fine and dandy, but then slowly but surely the true nature of people comes to light, in this case, the character of Ma.

5. Carrie

Carrie

We are looking at the original 1976 film, directed by Brian De Palma. There is a remake, which was released in 2013, but critics and audiences alike believe that the first version was superior. The film is about a 16-year-old girl who is bullied and mocked at school until finally, it comes to light that she has telekinetic abilities.

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The film, based on a novel by Stephen King, stars Piper Laurie, Nancy Allen, Amy Irving, and William Katt. The film has a small budget of $1.3 million and managed to make a box office return of $33.8 million.   

The character of Carrie, is different from those in The Purge, however, her situation is similar in that she is faced with bullies and attackers, who she must ultimately fight back against.

6. Mama

Mama

Mama is a supernatural horror movie that was released in 2013 and was co-written and directed by Andy Muschietti. The film was his directorial debut and follows the story of two girls who are adopted after their uncle retrieves them from the wilderness. It soon comes to light though that a supernatural entity has latched itself on the girls and now the family.

The film stars Jessica Chastain, Megan Charpentier, and Nikolai Coster-Waldau. The film received praise for its performances and atmosphere, but the plot and writing were criticized.

The film performed rather well and made a return of $146.4 million, after spending a budget of $15 million. If you like the idea of people experiencing uninvited guests, especially those of the supernatural realm, then this will certainly give you the creeps you desire.

7. Split

Split

Split is a psychological horror film, that was written, produced, and directed by the esteemed M. Night Shyamalan. The film was released in 2016 and it follows the story of a man, Kevin Wendell Crumb, who has numerous personalities and who has kidnapped three young women, who he is keeping in a secluded facility.

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The film stars James McAvoy, Betty Buckley, and Anya Taylor-Joy. It was well-received by critics and audiences as well but did receive some slack for being insensitive towards mental health. At the box office, the film made $278.5 million, on a budget of only $9 million.

Just as in The Purge we see characters that are trapped and at the mercy of a madman, who is only out to satisfy his own sadistic desires. This film is gripping and intense and manages to deliver on all fronts.

8. Get Out

Get Out

This 2017 horror film, which also has elements of suspense and thriller genres, was directed by Jordan Peele and was his directorial debut. It is about a young black man, who goes to meet his white girlfriend’s family and soon discovers some atrocious truths.

The film stars Daniel Kaluuya, Bradley Whitford, and Allison Williams. The film won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and was also nominated for Best Director, Best Picture, and Best Actor. It was also nominated for two Golden Globe Awards.

At the box office, it earned $255.4 million, after having spent only $4.5 million on production. Critics hailed it and audiences loved it. If you are looking for a film that has the same thrill of characters needing to evade capture and death then you have found the one for you.

9. The Conjuring

The Conjuring (2013)

The Conjuring is a supernatural horror film, which was directed by James Wan, who also directed Saw. The movie was released in 2013 and was the start of the Conjuring franchise. The movie is about a couple of paranormal investigators, Ed and Lorrain Warren who help a family who is being tormented by an evil presence.

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The film stars Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, and Ron Livingston. It was the telling of the alleged real-life story of the Warrens. The film received positive reviews from the critics, which is unusual for a film of this genre, and managed to turn its budget of $20 million, into $319.5 million at the box office. 

Unlike The Purge which is a completely fictional story of a potential dystopian, this film claims to house some truth to it, which makes it even that much more terrifying, so if you’re up for a story where our heroes have to battle something other than humans, be sure to give this a watch.

10. The Platform

The Platform is a Spanish film from 2019, which is a social science fiction-horror, which was directed by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia. Although a foreign language film, there is not much dialogue in the film, and is more than worth the watch.

It is set in a large tower of a building where people are kept in cells and fed via a platform that starts at the top and goes all the way down. The residents have their level changed every 30 days and your hope is that you get placed to the top, when the food is still plentiful.

The film stars Iván Massagué, Zorion Eguileor, and Antonia San Juan. The film received good reviews from critics and although slow to start is, like The Purge, insightful dissection of humanities’ core. The film is available for streaming on Netflix.

11. Fractured

Sam Worthington Tin Sign Vintage Iron Painting Personality Novelty Metal Plate Vintage Wall Decor for Cafe 15.7"×11.8"

Fractured is a 2019 psychological thriller, that was directed by Brad Anderson. The film follows a couple who stop at a gas station and their daughter breaks her arm after falling. They then get her to a hospital, but soon we realize that something is amiss as both the wife and daughter go missing.

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The film stars Sam Worthington, Stephen Tobolowsky, Lily Rabe, and Adjoa Andoh. The movie received generally favorable reviews and although it did not have a theatrical run, it was premiered at Fantastic Fest and ultimately released onto Netflix.

The film is a complete thrill and mass of confusion from the start, but as things play out, there are hidden clues (all the way from the start) as to where the story will spiral to. If you like a film with suspenseful elements, which is thought-provoking, and clever, be sure to catch this one.

12. The Strangers: Prey at Night

The Strangers: Prey at Night (Unrated)

This is a 2018 slasher-thriller film, that was directed by Johannes Roberts and follows on after 2008, The Strangers. The film is about a family who is vacationing in a mobile home park that is rather secluded when they are attacked by masked thugs.

The film stars Bailee Madison, Christina Hendricks, and Lewis Pullman. Together they pulled off a film that received a mixture of reviews and thoughts from critics and audience members. Some thought it to be a great satire of the horror genre, whilst others thought it to be inferior and clichéd.

Its box office performance was not particularly wonderful as it only managed to earn $31.2 million, on a budget of $5 million. The film is similar to The Purge in that we see a family who is unwittingly caught up in a fight for their lives, by sadistic outsiders.

13. Countdown

Countdown

This 2019 supernatural horror film was written and directed by Justin Dec. The plot is about a group of individuals who come across a mobile application that correctly predicts when the user is going to die.

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The film, which stars Elizabeth Lail, Talitha Bateman, and Jordan Calloway, received negative reviews, however, audience members disagreed with the critics and the film managed to turn its budget of $6.5 million into a box office return of $48 million.

Like in The Purge where the victims of the terrorizing elements are fighting in the hope of the 12 hour period to end, these characters are also fighting against the clock, the only difference being that they do not want the time to pass.

14. Us

Us

Us is a 2019 horror film that was written and directed by Jordan Peele, who was also at the helm of Get Out. This film is about a family who are attacked by, not a group of strangers, but rather menacing doppelgängers.

The film stars Lupita Nyong’o, Elisabeth Moss, and Winston Duke. It ended up receiving success both critically and commercially and was able to turn its production budget of $20 million into a box office return of $255.2 million.

Like in The Purge this movie follows a family who believes themselves to be living a normal and secure life, until one day when a group of strangers arrives, the biggest difference here being that their assailants are not strangers, but exact copies of them. They need to survive by outsmarting people who understand exactly how they think.

15. Fantasy Island

Blumhouse's Fantasy Island

Fantasy Island is a supernatural horror film, co-written and directed by Jeff Wadlow, who also directed Truth or Dare. The film was released in 2020 and is about a group of people who go on a retreat to an island where their fantasies can be brought to real life, however, it is wise to be careful with regards to what you wish for, as things could turn nightmarish pretty fast.

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Starring in the film is Michael Peña, Lucy Hale, and Maggie Q, among others. The critics called the film a, “cautionary tale about the dangers of exhuming long-dead franchises.” However, this did not stop it from managing to make a box office of $48.8 million, on a budget of $7 million.

If you are looking for a film with a supposedly pleasant premise, but ultimately darker underbelly, then you’ll enjoy this film that also has the added elements of betrayal and questioning of character as seen in The Purge

16. The Silence

The Silence

The Silence is a horror film, which came out in 2019 and was directed by John R. Leonetti. The film is an adaptation of the 2015 novel, by Tim Lebbon. The movie shows a world that is under attack by creatures that hunt down their prey, by sound. Apart from the creatures, humans are also posing a threat to our heroes.

Starring in this film are Kiernan Shipka, Miranda Otto, and Stanley Tucci, among others. The critics were not impressed with the film, and for varying reasons, audience members were either for or against the overall product.

At the box office, the film made $2.3 million and was then made available for viewing on Netflix. If you are looking for a film where a family has to band together and fight against those who seek to harm them, as in The Purge then this film fits that mold.

17. Hush

Mike Flanagan and Kate Siegel attended a movie premiere.

Hush is a slasher film with elements of suspense and thriller to it and was directed by Mike Flanagan, who also edited it. The film, which is about a deaf and mute female writer, who lives a solitary life and ends up having to fight for her life against a masked killer, was released in 2016.

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The cast of the film includes John Gallagher Jr., Samantha Sloyan, and Michael Trucco. Critically the film received positive reviews and the audiences also thoroughly enjoyed it.

The film was made on a meager budget of $1 million and was released on Netflix for viewing. The film has a very similar premise to The Purge, only, in this case, the act of murder is not legal, yet our heroine, must still fight to save her life.

18. Gerald’s Game

Gerald's Game by Stephen King (2016-02-16)

This 2017 psychological horror film was both edited and directed by Mike Flanagan, who was also responsible for the direction of Hush. The film is based on the novel by Stephen King and is about a married couple who go away to an isolated location on holiday. While playing out a sexual fantasy of the husband’s he has a heart attack and his wife is left handcuffed to the bed.

The film stars Bruce Greenwood and Carla Gugino and together with the direction of Flanagan, they pulled off a movie that was lauded by the critics, who particularly congratulated Gugino’s performance.

The film was released not to theatres, unfortunately, but was made available for streaming on Netflix. If you are looking for a film which takes place in one location, as in The Purge, and is just as gripping and suspenseful, then this film is for you.

19. Polaroid

Polaroid

Polaroid is a supernatural horror film, directed by Lars Klevberg and was released in 2019. The film was based on the short film, by him, of the same name. The film is about a high school student, who receives a vintage Polaroid camera that harbors dark and mystic elements. She soon finds that whoever’s picture is taken will die.

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The film stars Kathryn Prescott, Tyler Young, and Samantha Logan. The movie, unfortunately, did not do well with critics, who gave it abysmal ratings, however, audiences were more appreciative of it.

Like a few others on this list, this film has elements of the supernatural and this can either be more or less terrifying than human antagonists. Either way, like in The Purge there is the matter that people will die, the only question is who?

20. Cube

Cube

Cube is a Canadian science-fiction horror film that was independently made and released in 1997. The film was co-written and directed by Vincenzo Natali. The film follows a group of individuals who are caught in a titular cube which they need to traverse, all the while going through rooms, some of which have been rigged with traps that are meant to kill.

The film stars Nicole de Boer, David Hewlett, and Nicky Guadagni, among others. The film received average reviews from the critics, but fans of “gore” horror films felt that it did itself justice.

It had an incredibly small budget of $350,000 and was able to rake in $9 million at the box office. If you are interested in films that show ordinary people having to use their wits to stay alive, then be sure to give this film a watch.

21. Panic Room

Panic Room

Panic Room is a thriller, released in 2002 and was directed by David Fincher. The film is about a mother and daughter whose home is invaded by robbers. The two of them take refuge in the safe room, while the three men search for a missing fortune.

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Starring in the film is Jodie Foster and her daughter, Kristen Stewart. Along with them are Forest Whitaker, Dwight Yoakam, and Jared Leto. The film was well-received by critics and audience members and praised for various aspects.

The film was made on a budget of $48 million and saw a box office return of $197.1 million. There are similar themes between Panic Room and The Purge and the survival against intruders is a definite parallel.

22. Don’t Breathe

Don't Breathe

Don’t Breathe is a 2016 horror-thriller movie, which was produced and directed by Fede Álvarez. The movie is about three friends who break into a blind man’s house and ultimately get trapped inside. They soon realize that their target is not as helpless as he initially seemed.

The film stars Jane Levy, Daniel Zovatto, and Dylan Minnette. The film was met with excellent reviews and for many reasons, including the acting, direction, and atmosphere.

The film was made on a budget of $9.9 million and walked away with $157.8 million at the box office. Unlike The Purge, in this film, those who break into the home of the owner, end up being the victims and are at his mercy. The suspense is palpable and you will be sitting on the edge of your seat from start to finish.

23. Unsane

Unsane

Unsane is a 2018 psychological horror, with definite elements of a thriller to it. The film was directed by Steven Soderbergh and it follows a woman who finds herself admitted to a mental institution against her will. It soon comes to light that a stalker of hers is working at the facility, but no one will believe her.

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The film, which was completely shot on the iPhone 7 Plus, stars Claire Foy, Jay Pharoah, and Joshua Leonard, among others. The film was made  on a relatively small budget of $1.5 million and managed to reap back $14.5 million at the box office 

The critical response was promising and audiences were also thrilled by the film, even though some had varying feelings about it. The sensation of entrapment, felt in The Purge is most definitely prevalent in Unsane and the whole time we are even left wondering if this is all in the protagonist’s head or for real.

24. 10 Cloverfield Lane

10 Cloverfield Lane

This 2016 science-fiction psychological thriller was directed by Dan Trachtenberg and was his directorial debut. The story follows a young woman who wakes up in an underground bunker, after having been in a car crash. When she wakes, she discovers two men who insist that the Earth’s surface is now uninhabitable.

The film was praised by audiences and critics for various aspects such as the portrayal of characters, story, and overall atmosphere. Starring in the movie is Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Gallagher Jr., and John Goodman.

The production had a budget of approximately $13 million and saw a sizeable return at the box office of $110.2 million. As with The Purge, things seem to be fine at first and the characters are all in harmony, but as time passes madness begins to creep in and they begin to unravel. 

25. No Country for Old Men

No Country For Old Men

No Country for Old Men is a 2007 neo-Western crime thriller; so it is a slightly different style to what most of the others are on this list. However, under the direction of Joel and Ethan Coen, they pulled off an exceptional film about violence and mayhem that ensue post a hunter who stumbles on a drug deal that went wrong.

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The film stars some big names such as Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, and Javier Bardem. The film ultimately won a total of 76 awards out of the 109 it was nominated for, of which 4 were Academy Awards, and 2 were Golden Globes.

If you like the violence and senseless killing found in The Purge, but are looking for something with high-quality acting and overall production value, then you can’t afford to miss this precious gem of a film.

Sources:

IMDB: The Purge

IMDB: Truth Or Dare

IMDB: Saw

IMDB: Escape Room

IMDB: Ma

IMDB: Carrie

IMDB: Mama

IMDB: Split

IMDB: Get Out

IMDB: The Conjuring

IMDB: The Platform

IMDB: Fractured

IMDB: The Strangers: Prey at Night

IMDB: Countdown

IMDB: Us

IMDB: Fantasy Island

IMDB: The Silence

IMDB: Hush

IMDB: Gerald’s Game

IMDB: Polaroid

IMDB: Cube

IMDB: Panic Room

IMDB: Don’t Breathe

IMDB: Unsane

IMDB: 10 Cloverfield Lane

IMDB: No Country for Old Men