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Movie Review – Fox Trap is a Tale of Revenge Served Tepid

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Prom night, for many high school students it’s a night of celebration. However, for one particular group of high school girls, it’s a night for staging a mean spirited prank on another of their female classmates.

They find her sharing an intimate moment with a young man in her class when the other girls spring into action. And everything seemed to be going as planned until the young woman, who is the intended target of their mean girl hijinks, is severely injured leaving her permanently disabled.

Eight years have passed, and the group responsible for the events of that tragic prom night have been invited to a reunion at a secluded country estate. And while they all seem rather amiable towards each other, some are being quite reticent about how truly awkward this gathering is for them.

During dinner the group decides to play a card game where the participants must answer truthfully the questions they are asked. The group becomes unsettled and tempers begin to flare when the questions on the cards appear to directly to address the group’s involvement in the tragic turn of prom night events eight years prior.

Following dinner and the subsequent blowout, everyone retires for the evening and are left to their own devices. Soon after everyone begins to settle in for the night, strange occurrences begin to stoke fires of suspicion. They are beginning to think somebody else may be on the property of the secluded estate, and their suspicions are confirmed when a masked killer claims his first victim.

Has this group been slated for death because of their past transgression? And who exactly is acting as judge, jury and executioner?

Scott Jeffery penned the script for Fox Trap, and frankly…it’s a story we’ve seen before in its entirety or in pieces. The story mirrors aspects of Scream, And Then There Were None, Prom Night and even has just a dash of Mean Girls. It also very closely resembles a film that came out in 2015 entitled, Most Likely to Die. Despite all these similarities, the story is very contrived. The overall structure is weak, inconsistent and lacks some necessary character and background development. How about building a foundation that more clearly explains or solidifies the murderous motives?

At the helm for his first feature length film is Jamie Weston, and I’m reluctant to call it his finest hour or hour and a half as it were.  There wasn’t anything stylistically distinctive, so the look of the film in general was pretty unremarkable. Even by employing any of the horror movie standards of low key lighting, Dutch angles, etc., there was never really an unsettling or ominous air.

Even the disguise of the killer is completely uninspired. Were they out of Scream “Ghost Face” costumes at the Spirit Halloween store? Surely the types of disguises a killer could wear have not yet been exhausted, and with even a tiny bit of creativity their villain could have had a distinctive look.. I will say that I was not only pleased to see the practical effects being employed, but that their effects crew did a fairly respectable job creating them.

The acting ranged from solid to serviceable to just mediocre, and at times was comparable to that which could be seen on a soap opera.  The degree to which most of the cast stood out seemed to be predicated by the length of time they survived on screen.

Therica Wilson-Read and Becky Fletcher were the only two cast members to show enough emotional depth to elicit a connection with their characters. Kate Greer also stood out due to her portrayal of the archetypal mean girl. You know the type…the blond, beautiful girl who can do no wrong, that every guy wants and every girl hates- even some of her own girlfriends.

As you can plainly tell, I was underwhelmed by Fox Trap.  However, I don’t necessarily believe this will serve as the “death knell” for the cast and crew of the film. When it comes to indie films, just getting the film made is in itself a huge victory. With sincerity, I hope that everyone involved does well moving forward, because for Fox Trap I can offer no more than 4 /10.

 

 

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