The red-band trailer for The Oath is here to ruin your family’s holiday gathering. The holidays are rapidly approaching and, for as much good that comes along with that time of year, there is a whole lot of stress and tension when family comes together. Especially when you throw in some hot-button, high-stakes political issues on the fire. That’s exactly what has been done here, but to the extreme. This is the Thanksgiving dinner of your nightmares.
Right off the bat, this footage is very NSFW, so if you’re at work or somewhere that a lot of cursing and other such happenings will be an issue, at the very least, put on some headphones and maybe turn down your screen brightness just a touch. Beyond that, it’s very much playing on a heightened version of what many families experience at Thanksgiving dinner; uncomfortable and heated political discussions with their relatives. That, in most cases, doesn’t result in government agents showing up at the house with guns pointed at one another and talk of moving to Mexico, but the overarching theme is relatable and timely. There is a lot of political divisiveness taking place currently and this trailer, though comedic in tone, feels heavy in its clear-cut commentary.
In The Oath, a controversial new government policy asking citizens to sign a loyalty oath to the President is introduced, leading to hardcore political tribalism throughout the country. When Chris (Ike Barinholtz), a high-strung progressive, and his level-headed wife Kai (Tiffany Haddish) learn of this, they decide to refuse signing this new mandated oath. But as the Thanksgiving deadline to sign approaches, things get heated. Sparring relatives, Chris’s agitation and the unexpected arrival of two government agents sends an already tense holiday dinner gathering completely off the rails.
Not only does Ike Barinholtz star in the upcoming comedy, but he also wrote and directed it, marking his feature directorial debut. Barinholtz has been an excellent comedic presence on screen for years, so it will be interesting to see what he can do behind the camera. As the star, writer and director, this rests squarely on his shoulders. It doesn’t hurt that he has Tiffany Haddish as the co-lead, who has rapidly ascended over the course of the last year, largely thanks to her turn in Girl’s Trip. It looks like this could easily wind up being her most interesting role yet as an actress.
As the trailer proudly boasts, The Oath comes from the producers of Get Out, so the political nature of the content shouldn’t come as a huge surprise. The rest of the cast includes John Cho, Carrie Brownstein, Billy Magnussen, Meredith Hagner, Jon Barinholtz, Nora Dunn, and Chris Ellis. The Oath will arrive in limited release on October 12, followed by a wide release on October 19. Be sure to check out the first trailer from the RoadsideFlix YouTube channel for yourself below.