Explainers

Savages cast: Who are Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Taylor Kitsch, the actors behind Ben and Chon

Promotional still from Savages.
Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Taylor Kitsch star in Savages. Pic credit: Universal Studios

The 2012 action-thriller Savages has recently resurfaced across everybody’s radar. Netflix added the box office success to its platform on March 16, and fans have been flocking to it ever since!

What is Savages? 

Savages tells the story of two Californian pot growers, Ben and Chon, and their shared girlfriend Ophelia. After the two businessmen refuse to go into partnership with a Mexican drug cartel, their girlfriend is kidnapped and held for ransom. 

Playing these lead characters are Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Taylor Kitsch, and Gossip Girl’s Blake Lively. Also starring in Savages are actors John Travolta and Salma Hayek.

Upon the movie being added to Netflix’s selection, many fans have shared online that Savages was “their movie” back in the 2010s. While the movie received a mixed reception from critics, it seems to be widely enjoyed by its fans and casual audience members.

Savages has a 50 percent critical rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 59 on Metacritic, although Google states that 80 percent of its users who view the movie have reported favorably. Google lists its audience rating at a 3.5 out of five, and proclaims that 80 percent of its users enjoyed watching it. The user score on Metacritic is also significantly higher as its user score is 6.4 out of ten.

Fans have not stayed quiet about the movie being added to Netflix. One fan excitedly tweeted, “Public service announcement! They have Savages on Netflix.”

Who is in it?

Starring as pot grower and Berkeley-graduate Ben Leonard in Savages is actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson. He is best known for playing Pietro Maximoff in Avengers: Age of Ultron. He also won over hearts playing Robbie Jennings in the teen romantic-comedy Angus, Thongs, and Perfect Snogging. 

Other big roles include playing the title character in Kick-Ass, Ray Marcus in Nocturnal Animals and Ives in Christopher Nolan’s Tenet.

The actor is not currently on Instagram or Twitter. However, there are many fan pages dedicated to praising his work across all major social media platforms.

The movie character John “Chon” McAllister, who is known to behave more aggressively, is played by Taylor Kitsch. Prior to Savages, Kitsch performed in romantic-comedy John Tucker Must Die alongside Brittany Snow and Ashanti. He was in Snakes on A Plane (also starring Samuel L. Jackson) and the science-fiction movie Battleship.

While he doesn’t have connections within the Marvel Cinematic Universe like Taylor-Johnson, Kitsch did star in X-Men Origins: Wolverine as the super-powered mutant Gambit. Other projects include 21 Bridges and the television movie adaptation of The Normal Heart, based on a play by activist Larry Kramer.

Kitsch is active on Instagram, where his biography lists the account as his only social media profile. He posts about his recent projects, his activism, and his traveling.

In his most recent post, he shared his newest movie project. He will be starring in the Amazon Studios thriller The Terminal List alongside Chris Pratt. Kitsch wrote, “Now it’s time to grind.”

Also starring in Savages is John Travolta, who plays the Drug Enforcement Administration agent Dennis Cain. Travolta is a widely-acclaimed actor, often recognized for his work through the seventies, eighties, and nineties. He played roles in the classic movies Carrie, Grease, and Pulp Fiction.

Salma Hayek is a Mexican-American actor who plays Elena, a drug cartel leader, in Savages. Hayek’s other works include starring in Wild Wild West and The Hitman’s Bodyguard. She also produced and guest-starred in the television comedy Ugly Betty.

It’s clear that this all-star cast didn’t steer in the wrong direction starring in Savages. After just 24 hours since the movie was added to the Netflix streaming platform, it is currently sitting in the number five on Netflix’s Top Trending in the U.S. list. 

For more Netflix news, click here.

Savages is now streaming on Netflix.

Raven Brunner


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