The Forever Purge: Franchise Creator Wants to "Set the Record Straight" on Series' Message

The Purge debuted in theaters in 2013 and, in the years since, has become a cultural touchstone, with the concept of any sort of seemingly sanctioned lawlessness being referred to as a "purge," which has led some audiences to wonder what series creator James DeMonaco's message might be with the films, in regards to whether he is endorsing or condemning such behavior. The upcoming The Forever Purge is set to be the last entry in the franchise, and while DeMonaco only wrote the film and isn't directing, director Everardo Gout claims DeMonaco wants to "set the record straight" on the franchise's cultural messaging.

“‘I want my intentions to be crystal clear on what I think about violence and what’s going on in the world.’ That’s what he told me,” Gout claimed about his advice from series creator James DeMonaco to Total Film, per GamesRadar. “It’s dystopian, but he’s trying to get us to look in the mirror. It makes you think, ‘Sh-t, if I get pushed into a corner, would I do the same?’ Once you open that door, how do you close it again?”

The outlet describes the new film, "The movie will take place after the events of Election Year and will center on Adela (Ana de la Reguera) and Juan (Tenoch Huerta), who find solace at a Texan ranch, having fled a drug cartel in Mexico. Things go awry when a group of outsiders decides to keep purging beyond the allotted time when people can break any and all laws."

The film also stars Will Patton and Cassidy Freeman.

Gout added, “It’s an amazing story of Latinos and Americans coming together to overcome despair and evil."

The first entry into the franchise put audiences right into the middle of the action, depicting a world in which the government sanctioned an annual 12-hour period where all violent crimes were legal, with the concept being that if society could "purge" their violent tendencies once a year without repercussion, it would be better for the country as a whole. The latest film in the series, The First Purge, went back to the origins of the event to depict how such a frightening policy could be put into place.

With all of the films in the series leaning into an action/horror tone, the franchise often feels more like escapism for audiences than social commentary. However, The Forever Purge seems to be offering much more concrete messaging about violence in our society.

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The Forever Purge is set to hit theaters on July 9th.

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