As you’ve seen over the last few days, we’ve partnered with Special K* to bring you this year’s film festival coverage. As a part of that coverage and to highlight their Special K* Popcorn Chips, we’re looking at Pop-up celebs marking their first TIFF appearances.
Last time we looked at Miles Teller, who is here to promote Whiplash. This time it’s three at a time: Max Irons, Sam Claflin, and Douglas Booth, members of The Riot Club, all popping up at TIFF to promote the film. It’s a secret society. It’s privilege and it’s entitlement. It’s a LOT of British boys…and they invaded the festival this weekend, wearing the hell out of their suits, like only British boys can do. I know this because I was there, spent practically an entire day with them – on the carpet on Saturday night, at the Hugo Boss after-party later on, and the next day in the etalk TIFF lounge. Oh My God, Douglas Booth is pretty up close. Pretty like in a Matt Bomer way in that there is exactly nothing wrong with his face.
The Riot Club is actually 10 members. Four of them showed up for TIFF on Saturday night at the Roy Thomson Hall gala where I was reporting live into the theatre. It was British invasion. Like they’re all super cute on their own…but when they come at you in a group, as a collective, there’s no resisting it, not even if you’re Sarah and you prefer “real men” like Benedict Cumberbatch who walk around in Kangol caps.
Of course it’s the accents too. But mostly it’s the attitude. Director Lone Scherfig (who is a badass) told me that these young men really bonded – and this is not a woman who says things just to say them, she MEANS her words – in the understanding that they were all coming up together, that they’re all right at that spot in their careers where they can still share it, driving for it as a team…before some surge ahead, some stay the same, and some fall backwards. When I was talking to her in the etalk TIFF lounge the next day, my first thought when she described it this way was The Outsiders. You remember? Tom Cruise, Patrick Swayze, Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez. I mean it’s not an exact comparison, but you get the idea…only, of course, The Riot Club is anything but “outside”. These kids have everything. And the story all of it.
The Riot Club is an indictment of the upper UPPER class that can be extrapolated beyond England. You can apply this criticism to Wall Street, to wherever there is a 1% for whom consequence is not a consequence. No matter what, they always, always, always win. But there’s more. Beyond class disparity we’re also looking at rape culture here – how vulnerable it can be for a woman who finds herself at the mercy of spoiled men who never have to say sorry, be sorry, and atone for their mistakes. That doesn’t just happen at Oxford. Holliday Grainger represents more than just English girls.
All of this packaged to you in the most attractive way possible. The Riot Club is wild – debauchery is supposed to be, non? And it’s also disturbingly funny. Until it’s not. And then you end up feeling dirty for being amused. Which, I think, is the point. Part of the reason these people are allowed to continue is that they continue to charm us.
The charm is well played by all the actors but, in particular, Max Irons and Sam Claflin are excellent here, definitely the strongest work of their careers. Sam is very good at going dark. Max shows he has all kinds of emotional range when he’s not stuck in a Stephenie Meyer book. And, um, did I mention they’re all SOOOOO hot?
For me, I’ll give Max the edge on height and build (lanky) and pure sex appeal. Don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone look this hot in a green sweater.
Although up close Douglas Booth’s mouth is...perfect.
Have you checked out Special K* Popcorn Chips? They’re low in calories – 80 calories/20 chips so you can munch away guilt free – and come in two amazing flavours: Sweet & Salty and Butter.
Want more information? Check them out here. Happy Festival hopping!
Attached: The cast of The Riot Club at their TIFF premiere and at the premiere after party.