One of the most popular movie stars right now is none other than Robert Pattinson. The British actor has been in the public eye since he was cast as the lead in the critically acclaimed vampire movie, The Twilight Saga (2008–2013). Since then, he’s appeared in several large-scale films, including the upcoming Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Karate Kid‘s prequel The Karate Kid Part II, and the comedy Gentleman Jack.

The latest project from Pattinson is I Thirst, a coming-of-age drama set in Los Angeles. The film will be released on January 18, 2022, by 20th Century Fox.

The movie marks the fourth collaboration between the 35-year-old actor and director David Leitch, who previously directed him in Saving Mr. Banks (2018), The Lace Weaver’s Daughters (2020), and The Mountain Between Us (2020).

Written by Leitch and Peter Filichia, the film follows a group of kids as they navigate their way through the machinations of high school. In an attempt to secure a place on the varsity baseball team, they hatch a plan to save money for a new car. Convinced that their plan will make them rich, the kids set out to scam their way to financial freedom. But their scheme quickly goes awry when one of them gets hurt during a stunt gone wrong and is placed in a medically-induced coma. When he comes out of the coma, the kids find themselves facing a bleak reality: their scam has backfired, and they’re now in serious debt.

What makes I Thirst different from other teen movies is its setting and its cast. The story takes place in a recognizable American city, and the characters are all played by either British or Canadian actors. These are certainly not your usual high school movie cliches. The role of the comatose teen was previously played by Logan Marshall-Green in the 2010 Sundance hit comedy Another Earth, and his performance earned him a Rotten Tomatoes rating of 92% and a Critics’ Choice Award nomination for best supporting actor.

Pattinson’s involvement in I Thirst is not limited to acting. He also co-produced the film with his partner, Sandy Robinson, and worked as a creative consultant.

The 56-year-old Robinson is an art and business advisor to A-list celebs, including Pattinson. She previously collaborated with the actor on The Lace Weaver’s Daughters and The Mountain Between Us. The pair previously worked together on the 2015 fantasy adventure Exodus.

While working on I Thirst, Robinson and Pattinson learned a lot about acting and producing. She revealed to Entertainment Tonight that working with the actor was incredibly challenging because he’s so intense and wants to do everything himself. She also praised his attention to detail, noting that he would sometimes get so absorbed in a scene that he would forget to eat.

Pattinson’s character in I Thirst undergoes an emotional journey as he fights to come to terms with his role as a father figure to his comatose son. In the film’s final moments, he drives off to visit his child in the hospital. The actor has previously revealed that he considered dying his hair a year before the movie’s release to match the film’s gloomy atmosphere.

The Reaction On Twitter

The final scene of I Thirst was not the only thing that caused Twitter users to lose their minds. The movie also featured a young Sophia Loren, and the Internet melted down. It started with an image macro depicting a golden-haired young Sophia, looking every bit the sophisticated, world-class beauty that she was. The tweet went viral, and within a few days, it had over 20.7 million views on Twitter.

The image was eventually followed by a montage of Tweets using the hashtag #ILostMyMind, inspired by a quote from the film. Many users expressed their admiration for the Academy Award–nominated actress, calling her a goddess and comparing her to the Greek pantheon. The film itself was also a trending topic on the social media platform, with users praising Pattinson’s performance and the director’s unique vision.

The Reception From Critics

The critics weren’t the only ones who recognized Pattinson’s talent. Several websites and magazines hailing from both the UK and the U.S. gave the film a glowing review, praising the actor’s performance and calling Leitch a master at creating interesting narrative arcs. The movie’s depiction of Los Angeles architecture was also singled out for praise. The review aggregator website, Rotten Tomatoes, has the film listed with an exceptionally high score of 94% based on 33 reviews. Critics also cited the film’s dark, twisty storylines, comparing them to the brilliant scripts of Dennis Potter and David Edelstein.

The film received a four-star rating from the television show, Mystery League, which examines British crime stories and their influence on modern life. Co-host, Charlie Covell, said, “If you like your thrillers grim, atmospheric and filled with stunning cinematography then you’re in for a treat with I Thirst.”

The London-based movie site, CNET, called the film a “tender, heartbreaking drama” and awarded it three and a half stars out of five. The Verge, a content platform focused on technology, also reviewed the film favorably, awarding it three out of five stars.

Based on the reviews, it seems as though I Thirst will be adding another star to its already impressive rating when it premieres in theaters next month.