The Foxy Feminist
During the thick of the second wave feminism movement many films did not have an accurate depiction of what life was like for a woman America. With a feminist centered narrative, Jack Hill’s Foxy Brown (1974), is more of a melodrama than Blaxploitation. Reversed gender role and characterization of women, and a female empowered plot and story that challenged the status-quo role of women. An ambiguous genre to define in film with many variations of characteristics that define it Jane Gaines says, “[melodramas] translate ideological dilemmas into private predicaments” (10), as the story of Foxy Brown is centered around a woman avenging the death of her murdered boyfriend in United States 1970’s. An example of a reversed gender role in the movie is signified by the occupation of Katherine Wall, Foxy’s white counterpart. Her character is the founder of an escort service masked as a modeling agency where Foxy goes undercover as a prostitute. Katherine was the solicitor of sex. Later, the narration revealed that Katherine was indeed the person who ordered the death of Foxy’s boyfriend, as the two men report to her when he is dead. Not focusing on the race but the gender of Katherine. In the decade of classic movies in which women were rarely portrayed as bosses, her character signified progression and ability. Not only was she the solicitor of sex, she had the power to have people killed. Foxy’s prostitute friend also engages in a gender reversal. Her husband comes to the brothel with their son and pleads for her to leave with him. Embracing her independence she rejects her role as a mother leaving him to care for their son as a single father, as she decides to stay at the brothel. The rejection of the American life-style norm was challenged in this scene and a light was shed on the issue of the increase of broken homes in the 1970’s(support). The last example of reversed gender role occurred at the end of the movie, Foxy is put in the...
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