The First Purge is a prequel, rewinding the horror franchise back so that fans can see what happened during the, well, first purge. It turns out, based on the newly released trailer, that average citizens weren’t that into the idea of massacring their neighbors during the lawless 12-hour period, but the United States government really wanted a body count.
The trailer hit the web on Friday morning, and the spot makes clear The First Purge is really leaning into the explicitly political vibes the earlier poster hinted at. While there isn’t a #MAGA-esque “Make America Purge Again” hat to be seen in the new trailer (a riff on Donald Trump’s infamous red caps), there’s still a lot of relevant weight behind the violence.
Unlike past Purge films, The First Purge focuses on an African-American family. Lex Scott Davis’s character appears to be an anti-purge proponent, and it seems like her advocacy is working — at first. One of the Purge’s organizers laments that there are more parties than there are riots, but shortly afterward, the gunfire starts. Turns out, the government has sent disguised soldiers in to give the killing a kick-start. It’s action-packed and scary, but it’s hardly a reach to make a connection between those murderous soldiers acting on government orders and real-life killings of unarmed black men and women by law enforcement.
Davis is joined by Y’Lan Noel, Joivan Wade, Luna Lauren Velez, and Marisa Tomei, who plays the sociologist who came up with the idea of the purge, which seems to have escalated beyond what she envisioned.
Here’s the poster, which is a twist on the Statue of Liberty.
The First Purge begins on July 4.