1) Slow motion sequences taking away from realistic moments
There were two very bad sequences in which slow motion was used as a dramatic tool, but it fell short and came off showy and stupid. The first is shown in the picture above, and might have just been shot that way for the trailer. I'm sure that's a good enough reason, right? No.
Anyways, who remembers the couple standing outside their car for an obscene amount of time, watching these dangerous figures zoom around on their skateboards and creepily wave at them? Finally the woman says, "We need to get out of here." Yeah, no shit.
The second was when the mother trips on the subway tracks underground. She just couldn't get up. This allowed for some amazing back-and-forth cutting between the villains' vehicles gaining on the characters and the mother's motionless body. Intense to say the least.
2) The entire beginning
One thing that made the predecessor such a nice surprise was the fact that it was very character driven. It focused on one family and executed the home invasion genre very well. This time around, DeMonaco decided to intertwine several plot lines, and by the time they actually do connect, you realize you don't give a shit about any of the characters at all.
3) Creating the universe
Those billboards. Oh, goodness, those billboards. Any time they'd broadcast a news announcement or an anti-NFFA PSA, I'd cringe (that or laugh). This sequel really would have been better off heeding the advice of, "less is more."
4) The NFFA rebellion
I couldn't stop thinking that they initially tried to cast Samuel L. Jackson as the head of the rebellion, but ended up with Michael K. Williams to play the typical, angry black man with no substance whatsoever. Oh, and let's bring back a pivotal character from the first film and give him no reason to be in the film besides the cool twist that he actually showed up on screen. Cool.
5) The boyfriend's death
This shit made me laugh. HARD. How could you not? When I was in the theater, I heard a good amount of, "Oohs" and "Ahhs", but I was the only one who laughed. They pulled that Red Dawn remake shock twist. Let's have a moment and then kill off a character instantaneously. You could argue that it was purposefully executed to emphasize the fact that sappiness doesn't exist in this type of film, but because it isn't purely a satire (or at least a smart satire), I don't think it works.
In case you forgot who Tanya actually is, (which I'm sure you have) she's the mother's friend from work who provides our ensemble cast with a safe house. From the moment the characters get to the house, we know something's up. It's not as safe as we thought. There are a million directions in which this scenario could have played out, but of course it somehow decided to fall into a ridiculous stereotype. Let's have the hispanic character be in the middle of an affair with her sister's husband. It's like an episode of Maury or Jerry Springer.
7) The premise dives deeper
The premise to these films are stupid enough to begin with. Giving people one day a year to let go and commit crimes such as murder would not result in almost eradicating crime year round. This time they discover that the New Founding Father's are implementing the purge to kill off the lower class who aren't contributing to society. This obviously makes no sense as you'd think the upper class would consider the fact that they're killing off the people who help the economy run, working jobs they would never dream of doing.
8) THE END
Twist after twist, as expected, reveal themselves in great fashion. This guy shoots this guy. You think she shoots the bad guy, but it's actually the guy that the main guy didn't shoot. Mind... BLOWN.
Once again, there are a million ways this film could have ended on a better note. It became extremely serious, then absurdly campy, and finally reverted back to sincere by the end. I just don't get it. What movie are you trying to make?
Our brooding hero decides to finally tell the mother and her daughter why he has come to this house to purge, as if we weren't smart enough to figure it out the whole time. Is there really one person out there that didn't think his child's unjust death was the cause? Give your audience the benefit of the doubt. They're smarter than you may think.