Brits take a page from the US's The Skulls - with a badder and more malevolent secret society of Oxford University called The Riot Club.
With the collegiate elite comes the most secret society of all, The Riot Club. Two freshman are initiated to join the prestigious organization and round out the club’s roster. Admittance is reserved only for those with the right pedigree and surname and can guarantee a life of excellence – they just need to make it through the celebrations.
Freshmen at Oxford University do not always get in solely on merit. In these instances, they are spoiled, horrid prats, that typically can thank daddy for a superior surname and bank account. Born and bred from the upper class elite, these individuals will inevitably be the ones in prestigious executive positions running the country. Loathsome and arrogant, The Riot Club tells of a group of ten such young men on a fateful night when they induct two new members into their infamous club.
As a film, The Riot Club does not feel as though it follows a typical plot structure like other dramatic thrillers. At first, it feels like any old university flick, fun and debaucherous. At some point, the tone shifts to a darker persuasion, and the drama seemingly spirals out of control. What starts as a playful game and recreational vice turns sinister and ominous. This unique ability and trait most likely stems from the film’s initial origins, a play called “Posh” written by its screenwriter Laura Wade.
The Riot Club enlists one of the most top notch list of young actors as its atrocious brats. The actors are magnificent, and despite their handsome appearances, come across as wretched. Most notable of the group being Sam Claflin, Sam Reid, Douglas Booth and the redeemable Max Irons. In reality, all of the actors, even those in a supporting role, are fantastic.
The Riot Club is not an easy watch because there is this unease about the content of the film, and you can not simply push aside the film as fiction. Perhaps things are not as transparently in this manner, but the class inequality of the developing world does not feel too far off.
The Riot Club – Review