Bill’s Wife Knows Best Marathon: Foxfire (1996)

The first film in the Bill’s Wife Knows Best Marathon, or as it’s otherwise known, the marathon where Bill’s critical eye and inability to keep his mouth shut leads to him being single again!

Screenplay By: Elizabeth White
Directed By: Annette Haywood-Carter

*Make sure you keep scrolling past my rating at the end to read what my wife has to say about the movie, and probably how how much I suck*

The unrealistic tone of Foxfire was hard for me to get past, so hard that I was never able to. Before anyone shouts anything about a fantasy world or anything like that, when I say unrealistic a fantasy world is not what I am talking about. I had trouble finding the relationships within the film real, and I had a very hard time finding Angelina Jolie’s character of Legs real. I know that women like her exist, that’s not my problem, but the way she was inserted into the story was completely out of the blue. When you combine her entry into the story with the fact that her character is never given much worldly weight it created an unrealistic character who I had a heck of a hard time accepting. Much of Firefox operates in this way, so much so that even after thinking about the film for some time I could not bring myself to accept the way the film handles reality.

That’s not to say that I didn’t find aspects to enjoy about Foxfire, because I did. While I wish the reality of the film had been more sound I did quite enjoy the films central message. The writer, Elizabeth White, and director, Annette Haywood-Carter, tow a fine line between female empowerment and man hating. They manage to stay mostly on the side of female empowerment, with the exception being the broad characterizations that are all the males in the film. The female protagonists don’t hate men, they just want to be treated fairly. I can get behind that message and I liked the way Firefox treated friendship as the basis for female empowerment.

What I didn’t like was the unrealistic friendship the film chose to present. I never truly bought any of these women as a group of friends because the film creates a bond during the course of a week and never adds the necessary weight to their friendship. I wanted to buy the friendship formed by the five women, and I almost did, but in the end it felt too rushed for me to buy. The relationship between Maddy and Legs is given the most time and that one came across fairly well, but the relationship of the group as a whole is never given the time to develop as it should have been.

I didn’t hate Firefox, as much as I know that’s what my wife is thinking right now. I liked the central message of the film, but I do wish that Miss Haywood-Carter had chosen a better delivery service for that message. The performances are all fine, the message is one that I can get behind, but the film making left a lot to be desired. I know my wife cringed all throughout this review, but trust me honey, I did like certain aspects of Firefox. I don’t come away from Firefox loving the movie like you do, but certain parts of it did draw me in. If only the message of the film had been give to me in a better manner I would have liked it a lot more, but the unrealistic tone adopted by the film making is just not something I could get past.




Now for a regular part of this marathon where my wife chimes in,

Sarah’s Soapbox

I first saw this movie when I was in sixth grade and it has been one of my favorite movies ever since. The idea of a group of girls, as dissimilar as these girls are, forming such a strong bond was very appealing to me. I had seen plenty of movies that showed groups of rebelling boys but never before Foxfire had I seen a movie about a group of girls like this. I guess since I was a young troubled girl, it didn’t bother me that the movie was about young troubled girls and showed most of the male characters as either weak or the bad guys. I have watched this movie many times since I was a sixth grade girl, and although I have changed, my feelings about Foxfire have not. To top it all off I really enjoy the music in this movie.




6 responses to “Bill’s Wife Knows Best Marathon: Foxfire (1996)

  1. Mark Middlemas

    I thought you were reviewing Clint Eastwood thinking in Russian versus boredom and bad special effects…that Firefox.

  2. That’s what I thought as well, then I realized that Bill happens to be an idiot that is constantly calling this movie by the wrong title and even did so in the title of this post, d’oh. It’s now been switched to its proper title of Foxfire.

  3. Heh, I was thinking it was going to be Eastwood too. Good dual review. Fun 🙂

  4. Thanks Noff 🙂

  5. Man, it’s been year since I’ve seen this film. Yet, I think this is the first film where I saw Angelina Jolie topless. I was 15 when this movie came out. Boobies were a big deal for me at the time. I kind of liked it at the time because it was different from a lot of the more mainstream, happier teen movies at the time. I’m not sure how it will hold up for me now.

  6. The topless scene was a trip, I’ll give the film that much.

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