Thursday, March 25, 2010

Foxy Brown [1974]

Despite my trailer post over the weekend – I have yet to see Foxy Brown until now. That post was probably more of a motivator for myself – than just pointing out how cool the film is. There’s a certain anticipation factor when you go into watching what is generally considered one of the greatest films in any particular genre. I know when I think of blaxploitation – I think; Shaft, Super Fly, Richard Roundtree, Pamm Grier and Foxy Brown (and not in that order).

Foxy Brown is one bad mama – she don’t take shit from anybody. When Foxy’s boyfriend is killed – Foxy goes on the attack – and weaves through a drug and prostitution ring to get her revenge.

I’m surprisingly left a little mystified by this film – especially considering this was originally sketched as the sequel to the amazing Coffy [1973]. Foxy Brown is a bit more convoluted and dull when compared to Coffy – but it’s Foxy Brown that gets more attention (and I think it’s because of the name). In Foxy Brown – I wanted more, more, MORE than what we got in Coffy – and considering it’s still Jack Hill’s writing and directing – I figured it wouldn’t be tough for him to take it and kick it up a notch.

Unfortunately, I found the film a little too bogged down in it trying to be something that it’s not. Foxy goes undercover in a drug/prostitution ring – when I’m not sure how that made much sense. I was uncertain what she hoped to uncover – as she seemed to be getting all the information she would need outside the organization. The only thing that she accomplished by going undercover was putting herself in bad situation after bad situation. This was basically the entire plot – and I felt like it was filler – when we knew what Foxy was wanting and going to do anyway. She should’ve gotten in – taken out the bad guys and went on the run or made some sort of stand – or played with them by taking out the organization from the bottom up in a massive escalation.

I loved the opening scene where Foxy’s brother, the cops and the bad guys were all at the late night taco bar all eating tacos and drinking coffee. (What kind of strange combination is that?) Suddenly, Foxy’s brother afraid the cops would leave and the bad guys would get him - started making a ton of proclamations about how “great” the coffee is repeatedly saying “coffee” over and over – an obvious reference to Coffy. For me though - it backfired reminding me of the better film – but provided me with several laughs. I would watch the movie all over again – just for that scene – that is one of the best scenes in my exploitation film watching experience.

I’m a big fan of Pam Grier – she’s one hell of an acting talent and one hell of a beauty – so obviously the movie gets a plus from her presence. The main two villians were actually pretty creepy – especially Kathryn Loder was entertaining in her whispery delivery of every line. The direction was nothing special – but worked well in the time period and for the genre. The action was well done – and the soundtrack was kickass.

I will fully admit – I was especially tired – and this may have affected my view of any movie I watched – but until further review – I’ve got to give Foxy Brown a 3 out of 5.

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