From the first hazy shots of makeup, thin ankles, fan posters, and Polaroids, you are instantly transported into the ever fascinating world of teenage girls. In Adrian Lyne's bad girl drama, Foxes, starring Jodie Foster, and Cherie Currie from The Runaways, that world becomes infinitely cooler and more intriguing when it's a group of misfits teens in the early eighties making their way in Los Angeles. It a very unrosy look at the struggles of the teens, especially dealing with selfish and loose mothers (played with sympathetic nuance by the amazing Sally Kellerman!), abusing cop dads (poor Annie!!), bad new dudes, drugs, alcohol, sex and school.
I'm talking girls who take ludes, “did it with a couple guys in ninth grade cause it was new”, feather their short blindingly bleached blonde hair and have friends that mix their Orange Crush with Vodka at school. In short, they rock, but of course this is in some ways a cautionary tale and gets heavy in an Outsiders-y way, but the getting there is a surprisingly realistic and fantastic ride. The acting, beautiful cinematography and not entirely predictable story make this a cut above the cheesy eighties teenager movie you might be expecting.
Aside from Kellermen and Foster, who shines as she always did as a wizened teen, you've got a young, way goofy Randy Quaid, who I automatically assumed would be playing a pervy boyfriend of someone's mom, but against my expectations is almost sweet as an older dude that “fucking worships” his sixteen year old girlfriend, the huggable Madge, played by Marilyn Kagan, whose looney but fun time mom is played by Five Easy Pieces Lois Smith. The two of them have this phenomenal mom daughter fight, that at first seems so weird because it's so not a movie fight, but the real kind that's awkward and free form.
I know Scott Baio has given the world ample reason to fall out of love with him in his fakey realty show of late, but if you can remember his charm in Charles in Charge, you'll believe me that here, as a teen partying in a tuxedo tee shirt, he goes beyond charming and is downright adorable.
Foxes deserves an honored place in the teen genre, but rarely gets it's dues.?Roger Ebert, who our hearts are with, knew what was up though when he gave it a thumbs up on it's release. Don't miss out, rent it soon!
But what do you think?