Foxy Brown (1974)

Genres - Crime, Thriller  |   Sub-Genres - Blaxploitation, Crime Thriller  |   Release Date - Apr 5, 1974 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 91 min.  |   Countries - USA  |   MPAA Rating - R
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Jack Hill's successful follow-up to the brutal blaxploitation hit Coffy manages to top that drive-in favorite by piling on twice the action and outrageousness. The B-movie revenge plot is nothing new, but works nicely thanks to Hill's flair for infusing commonplace plots with colorful moments that give them a new lease on life. The highlights in this vein include a fight in a lesbian bar and the Black Panther-inspired "community watch" group that keeps pushers off the ghetto streets. Hill also turns in some nice work behind the camera, slyly alternating light comedy and brutal action to keep the audience off guard and maintaining a lean pace that keeps the film crackling with the energy of a good B-movie. However, Foxy Brown's top asset is Pam Grier's performance. No matter how strange the situation is, Grier plays the material straight and fuels her characterization with charm and intelligence to create a truly memorable B-movie heroine. Other performances of note include Antonio Fargas as Foxy's shifty drug dealer brother and Kathryn Loder as the snooty but twisted madam who tangles with the heroine. Ultimately, Foxy Brown may be a little too twisted and violent for the average viewer, but remains a one-of-a-kind grindhouse epic guaranteed to satisfy anyone who craves blaxploitation at its fastest and funkiest.