Moxie Image

Moxie

By Alex Saveliev | November 7, 2022

AFI FILM FEST 2022 REVIEW! William Means’ Moxie is a goofy lark, a send-up of the Los Angeles millennial party scene. As such, it succeeds wonderfully, providing 15 minutes of hilarity. There is also an unexpected flash of violence so shocking it’s impossible not to burst out laughing at the sheer audacity on display. Don’t come looking for cerebral rumination and you’re bound to have a blast.

Patrick (Timothy Huls) and Janine (Jessica Lea Risco) are a swingin’ couple, bringing home folks from LA clubs to engage in group orgies. This time, in addition to the gender-fluid Nike (Kian Morr), the butt-plug-loving Harris (Brayden Dalmazzone), and the voluptuous Jade (Ryanne Terrazas), an older woman called Moxie (Rocky Shay) somehow ends up taking the Uber with them.

Moxie acts awkward, annoying Patrick and Janine. The couple, however, is determined to proceed, charging their guests a fee for the ensuing sexual activities. A brief glimpse into Moxie’s background is provided when she goes to the bathroom to do some blow. Then a phone call perhaps gives a reason for her somewhat erratic behavior. This marks the one moment of depth as Moxie is otherwise non-stop levity.

“Tables break, butts are stimulated…”

The couple’s not-so-wheelchair-bound mother, Nana (Lauren Peterson), also happens to be a part of the orgy (and she loves cocaine). Tables break, butts are stimulated, and things most definitely do not go exactly according to plan. By the time s**t truly hits the fan (or, ahem, dishwasher), Moxie doesn’t seem so odd anymore, absconding with Nike and Jade to continue partying.

Themes of generational differences and running away from one’s past struggle to surface amidst the chaos, or perhaps I’m reaching. The entire point is to go with the flow and enjoy the kinky insanity. Shay holds the screen as the loud-mouthed, sardonic Moxie; Morr is the other standout, his reactions to the couple’s requests absolutely priceless.

If you’ve ever partied in LA, at least certain aspects of Moxie are bound to resonate. Means has crafted a biting little ode to the city of weirdos, and he does it with commendable moxie.

Moxie screened at the 2022 AFI Fest.

Moxie (2022)

Directed and Written: William Means

Starring: Rocky Shay, Brayden Dalmazzone, Lauren Peterson, Jessica Lea Risco, Kian Morr, Timothy Huls, Ryanne Terrazas, etc.

Movie score: 7/10

Moxie Image

"…a biting little ode to the city of weirdos."

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  1. helen says:

    The review is so subtle, keen, vivid and peppery that there’s almost no need to go watch the original👍

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