In her sophomore directorial offering, actress Amy Poehler tackles the complicated lives and relationships of high schoolers. But unlike many teen films, which fall the way of gross-out comedies or highlight mean girl behavior, “Moxie” is a fresh take on the genre. The revelatory dramedy, which hit Netflix on March 3 and quickly rose to the streamer’s number one spot, instead showcases women supporting women.
Based on the 2017 novel of the same name, the film tells the story of eleventh grader Vivian Carter (Hadley Robinson), who becomes disillusioned with the sexism and sexual harassment running rampant in her high school and, rather than keep her head down and turn a blind eye, decides to create an anonymous zine that builds women up. Titled “Moxie,” the zine sets off a revolution of female empowerment amongst her fellow students. Poehler also co-stars in the movie as Vivian’s mom, Lisa, a nurse who focused her younger years on “smashing the patriarchy and burning it all down” and serves as an inspiration for her daughter’s newfound activism.
Poehler describes the film as a “coming of rage story,” telling the “Keepin’ it Arcada” podcast that it’s about “a young woman getting in touch with her own rage.” The premise might sound a bit dark, but the movie is a feel-good story through and through.
Set in the fictional leafy suburb of Rockport, Oregon, “Moxie” was filmed largely in Los Angeles and its environs. Cast and crew traveled from Altadena to Tarzana to Highland Park, as well as to three area high schools including the oft-filmed El Segundo High, to bring the story to life.
Read on for a guide to all of the locations used in the film.