Angelina Jolie has become more widely known lately for her performances in films like "Girl, Interrupted" as well as her "wild girl" image, but it was a pair of fine performances in "Foxfire" and "Hackers" that introduced us to the actress about 4 years ago.
Although "Foxfire" does stumble towards the end, it's Jolie's performance as a drifter who becomes the new girl in town that really carries the picture. She plays "Legs", and forms a group with a number of local girls who have just been suspended for standing up to the teacher who has been sexually harassing one of them. After that, they're out on their own, and wind up getting into a little more trouble than they'd bargained for.
As I'd mentioned before, Jolie really carries the film because well, she's the only performer with much energy in the picture. Hedy Burgess as the "good girl" of the group offers an engaging, but not remarkable performance, as well. The other girls, as well as pretty much many of the other characters, are not to well-developed. As for the story, it has strong moments, but also periods that go a little into the "after-school drama" territory.
The film has an enjoyable visual look throughout, though and when I found out who the cinematographer was, I wasn't suprised in the least bit. Newton Thomas Siegel, the ace cinematographer who created stunning visual looks for both "The Usual Suspects" and "Three Kings" does excellent work here, creating enjoyable compositions in the 2.35:1 frame. The lighting is also excellent, creating a moody, haunting tone at times. Like anything else though, it can't redeem a picture that's occasionally slow. Still, the performance of Jolie and the visual look does make for a moderately enjoyable couple of hours.
VIDEO: There are some imperfections, but otherwise, Tristar has done a good job presenting "Foxfire" in the film's original 2.35:1 aspect ratio. There are some gorgeous shots, such as when Jolie climbs a bridge and looks out at the scenery of Portland, Oregon, where the film was shot(in chapter 6). Sharpness is excellent and consistent, and detail is good, as well. The film also has strong colors that are rich and deep looking on this image, with no problems such as bleeding. Flesh tones are natural and accurate, as well. A sequence or two looked slightly dark, but maybe that was how it looked in theaters, as well.
Flaws are minor; a little shimmering on occasion, but nothing too distracting. No pixelation, and although a couple of scenes are a little grainy, it's not distracting. All in all, it's a solid looking picture - nothing new from a studio who does solid work each time out.
SOUND: The sound for "Foxfire" is pretty limited; the film is mainly dialogue-driven with occasional rock music. The music does have a pleasing, deep presence. Dialogue though, occasionally could be a little clearer - it seems a little muffled at times.
MENUS:: Basic, non-animated main menu that simply uses the cover art.
EXTRAS: Trailers for "Foxfire" and Jolie's "Girl, Interrupted". Also, a bio for Jolie.
Final Thoughts: I think that how I'd recommend this film is pretty much just for fans of Angelina Jolie, who may enjoy it as a rental. Otherwise, it's a pretty unremarkable picture; Tristar's DVD has fine picture quality, but that's about it.
The Film C+
Video 88/B = (352/400 possible points)
Audio: 79/C+ = (316/400 possible points)
Extras: 70/C- = (210/300 possible points)
Menus: 70/C- = (140/200 possible points)
Value: 81/B = (243/300 possible points)
FILM GRADE: C+
DVD GRADE: C+