Released by: Arrow
Release Date: April 5th. 1974 (Theatrical)
June 24th, 2013 (Blu-ray)
Region Code: REGION B (locked)
Run Time: 1h 32m
Audio: LPCM 2.0 English
Video: 1080p (1.85:1 Aspect Ratio)
Bobbie: Listen skinny, before you start talking tough, I'd better warn you I've got a black belt in karate. So why don't you get out of here quietly, while you still got some teeth left in that ugly face?[Foxy knocks her down with a barstool]Foxy Brown: And I've got MY black belt in barstools!
THE FEATURES ⭐⭐⭐1/2
Hill is a wonderful commentator, filling the entire track with information about the film and the production. Foxy Brown was not supposed to be its own film, but a sequel to Coffy called Burn Coffy Burn, but AIP decided at the last minute that they didn’t want a sequel, despite Coffy being a huge hit. We also learn that the film had a very short shooting schedule, but Hill was able to complete the film on time and on budget. There is a lot more information to learn here.
From Black and White to Blaxploitation (19m 53m, HD)
Here we have an interview with actor Sid Haig, which covers his career with Jack Hill. He tells the story about how the two met and became great friends. He also speaks about Lon Chaney Jr, who worked with Haig on Spider Baby. Chaney would give Haig acting tips during breaks and eventually became Haig’s mentor. Haig then talks about the films that he worked on with Pam Grier. He speaks warmly about working with her and how she wanted to be taken seriously as an actor. Haig closes out by talking about how Coffy was one of the first films to open the doors to allow black actors to get leading roles in films.
A Not So Minor Influence (18m 57s, HD)
This is an interview with Bob Minor who talks about being one of the first black stuntmen. He talks about how he became a stuntman as well as his first film (Beyond the Valley on the Dolls). He was hired by Jack Hill to a stunt coordinator on Coffy, which was the first time a black man had ever held that role. He also talks about the stunts of Foxy Brown and him being the first black member of the Stunt Man’s Association.
Back to Black (25m 7s, HD)
Here we have a look at the Blaxploitation subgenre of film with interviews with Austin Stoker, Fred Williamson, Rosanne Katon, and film scholar Howard S, Berger. Sweet Sweetback’s Baaaad Aaassssss Song was the film that proved to Hollywood that black audiences wanted to see more black actors on screen. This lead to a time in the 70’s where black actors could work with other black actors (which was very common). We learn that Fred Williamson made a brand for himself which helped him keep his career going long after the Blaxploitation films stopped being made, which came about because the films were not bringing in the money that they used to. They were losing money, but the studios wanted the film to bring in more money, but they didn’t and the films were not made anymore.
Trailer Reel (19m 50s, HD)
This should have been called “The Jack Hill Trailer Reel” because all of the trailers here are for the films that Jack Hill directed. In fact, I think that this is all the films that he directed. We get trailers for Spider Baby, Pitstop, The Big Doll House, The Big Bird Cage, Coffy, Foxy Brown, Swinging Cheerleaders, Switchblade Sisters, and Sorceress.
Image Gallery (10 Images)
THE PACKAGING ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I am reviewing the steelbook packaging for Foxy Brown, but there is another set that Arrow released that is just like their normal releases. 14mm clear case, reversible cover art, etc. The disc is the same in both packages.
|This is the regular version|
Also inside the case is the standard Arrow booklet. Featuring many color photos, this booklet also features an essay from Josiah Howard, an interview with Pam Grier conducted by Calum Waddell, who is an author and film critic who used to work with Arrow. Finally, we get information about the transfer.
The disc is REGION B (locked)
THE PICTURE ⭐⭐⭐1/2
THE SOUND ⭐⭐⭐
THE FILM ⭐⭐⭐
Foxy Brown, while a good film, is not as great as Coffy is. This could be due to the fact that, while the film’s budget was similar to that of Coffy’s, the shooting schedule was cut by ten days. This made director Jack Hill work faster and cheaper, resulting in a film that is all over the place.
Grier stars as Foxy Brown, a woman who is out for revenge when her boyfriend , who is a government agent, is gunned down gangster. Brown goes out and becomes a prostitute for the people who killed her boyfriend so that she can destroy the origination from the inside out.
The bad guys find here out and send her to the farm, where two guys shoot her up with heroin and rape her. Finally, Brown comes to and kills the farm guys before gathering up everyone she knows to wage a war against the ones who have been doing her wrong.
I think the problem with the film is that it was rushed out and you can see this. The lead character of Foxy Brown is not that memorable. Just ask how many people have heard of the name Foxy Brown, and then ask them where they heard it from. Most will say the rapper and some will say “that movie with the black chick from the 70’s. That is what the film is most remembered for and it shows that the film is not that well remembered.
As I watched the film, I found myself not liking it as much as Coffy. Coffy had a life to it. Coffy went around and kicked a lot of ass. She didn’t care just as long as she got her man and kicked a lot of ass.
Then there are scenes, like the scene where Grier and another woman go to a judge’s hotel and embarrass him. I found this scene to be out of place with the tone of the rest of the film.
Foxy Brown is a lessor film than Coffy. It takes itself too seriously while trying to be goofy at the same time. Foxy Brown is also not as strong a character as Coffy. Brown jumps into action with hesitation and makes almost no mistakes (and yes, I said ALMOST), whereas Coffy makes mistakes, but takes them in stride and learns from them. Also, Coffy has the captain from Robocop as a pimp and Foxy Brown doesn’t. Foxy Brown is not that fun of a film. I wanted to like it more, but it just doesn’t sit with me as well as Coffy does. Maybe I need to watch the film again. Until then, Coffy is a better film and a better character.