What Is Monica Puller's Foxholes About, and Is It Any Good?

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Answered by: Dayna, An Expert in the Movie Reviews Category
Review of Foxholes

Written and Directed by Monica Puller

Produced by Monica Puller, Andrew Shearer and Devon Peter

Featuring Diver Velour, Monica Puller, Devon Peter, Holly Ween, Thio Rose, Kert Rats, Priscilla Lee Press-On, Countess Samela

32 minutesAlthough Athens, Georgia may not be the filmmaking capital of America, we are fortunate to be home to a particularly prolific- and creative- group of underground filmmakers who go by the name of Gonzorrific Productions. This independent filmmaking collective creates, in the words of its founders, ‘female-driven, genre-jumping underground cinema.’ Their large catalog of past efforts includes films like Cannibal Sisters and Psycho Vixens. Their newest venture is Monica Puller's Foxholes.Foxholes is a unique creature - a film that does indeed jump genres deftly combining what is, in essence, a love story with elements of satire, dark humor and revenge. The director manages all of this in a lean 32 minute package that works remarkably well. Although not without its imperfections, Foxholes is a film worth seeing for its raw, heartfelt character.

The story centers around the relationship between young female lovers Alexyss (played by sultry film newcomer Diver Velour) and Autumn (director Monica Puller). A short opening sequence introduces them as ‘just two girls looking for a happy ending’. The insular world of their relationship, the story of which is portrayed in high contrast black and white, gives way to the inhospitable larger world which is bathed in color but flat and less dreamy in appearance. Alexyss’s family despises Autumn, opposing both their relationship and lifestyle. Her two mothers are blindly hypocritical in their assertion that homosexuality is wrong, and that the only way she can be saved is by finding a man as her sister, Mary Ellen, has already done. The family is so religious that they even manage to convert a door-to-door Jehovah’s Witness who has the misfortune to knock. It is a household where prejudice, hatred and bigotry are literally on the dinner menu. In a rather unique (read ‘ballsy’) casting choice, one of the mothers is played by Devon Peter. Yes, he’s a man, and yes, they’re able to pull it off. His presence brings comic relief to the proceedings without taking things to the level of silliness.

Despite a slow beginning, the film picks up its pace quickly, propelled primarily by the building connection between the audience and the young protagonists. We’ve all read sufficient amounts of Shakespeare to know that when two young people are in love and an overzealous family is dead-set against the relationship the result is destined to be anything but good. When Alexyss’s family decides, with the help of Mary Ellen’s boyfriend Erik, that it is up to them to take action to end the girls’ relationship for good, it sets into motion an unexpected and righteously bloody chain of events. Think shades of "Last House on the Left", and you'll be in the right neighborhood.

Hardcore horror fans interested only in gore will find themselves disappointed, as the effects are sufficient but minimal. Yet the brutality in Monica Puller's Foxholes, implied but realistic, is ultimately more violent than any arterial-spraying decapitation scene. In all, it is an admirable directorial debut that is simultaneously dark and redeeming, and a treat for fans of true underground cinema.

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