Sunday, June 16, 2013

Foxy Brown (1974)

Foxy Brown (Pam Grier) is a whole lotta woman. Her boyfriend is a cop who infiltrated the ghetto mob and they are out for revenge. To protect himself, he undergoes plastic surgery. Unfortunately, her ne'er-do-well brother, on the run from the same mob, recognizes him and trades his life for some debt forgiveness. Exit boyfriend. This don't go over well with o'll Foxy. She's a whole lotta woman. Foxy goes undercover in the mob's prostitution ring and, well, things play out mostly as you can expect.

What a terrible film! I occasionally hit the exploitation scene and I don't know why. The stories are formulaic, the acting is terrible, even the fight sequences are badly filmed. The only saving grace is the nudity, and Foxy Brown has fairly little. But the movie does redeem itself somewhat. The climax is clever and satisfying. I also liked the element of the boss man being a woman, with a boy-toy who clearly sees his relationship with her as part of the job. Does that save the film as a whole? I'm not so sure.

The titular character has become a pop culture icon. Is she not the archetype for Beyonce's Foxxy Cleopatra character in Goldmember? She is not the passive heroine so common in this kind of film. Foxy goes right after the bad guys and does not flinch. She takes her share of punishment and dishes out a whole lot more. In truth I can see why people become fascinated by these movies, but don't mistake them for fine filmmaking. It stands squarely in the guilty pleasure zone. That said, for me it's more guilt than pleasure. AMRU 2.5.
"That's my sister, baby, and she's a whole lotta woman."

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