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As a little girl, Dodo cannot walk. She associates herself with "The Little Mermaid" and wonders if she would give up something of her own in order to own a pair of feet. Fortunately, she gains a pair of feet after an operation, and hence is indulged in collecting and wearing beautiful shoes and heels even after she has grown up. She marries Smiley, a handsome but shy dentist. They live a happy life, except that Dodo still keeps buying shoes. Later, she reluctantly accepts Smiley's request to stop buying shoes, until one fateful day when she accidentally walks right into the shoe store ... Written by
L.H. Wong <email@example.com>
All the justification you need to go and buy those shoes!
In all fairy tales, there is good, evil and the quest for true happiness. Good can be in the form of a princess, a mermaid or even just a little girl, but evil is usually witch-shaped. Also, Prince Charming always equals true happiness. Often dark and scary, sometimes simply unfair, fairy tales teach us about life. So what do we learn from The Shoe Fairy? Well the lessons in this fairytale are definitely for the girls. Firstly, horrible things will happen to you if you deny yourself the pleasure of buying more and more shoes (we knew it!). Secondly, you may try and convince yourself that you don't need Prince Charming to have true happiness, but he is unavoidably - an essential part of the equation. Lastly, it is never a good idea to shake a gift before opening it.
The Shoe Fairy teaches us these vital lessons through the story of the unfortunate Dodo, a little girl who can't walk and so learns about the perilous world of give and take in fairy stories. Unsurprisingly, she identifies most strongly with The Little Mermaid, who gives up her magical voice to an evil witch in order to gain a pair of legs and live on land with the Prince she loves. Then a miracle operation gets Dodo up and running to the shoe shop and many shoes later, she is a beautiful young woman, working as an accountant to support her shoe habit. And though she is a very quiet girl, she did not have to trade her beautiful voice with a witch to get this charming life.
Then a grumbling wisdom tooth forces Dodo to seek out Smiley the Dentist, aka Prince Charming. What a prince! Not only is he a man who can appreciate the beauty of shoes, but he willingly wears many hats to make sure Dodo's dreams are not interrupted by the bright glare of morning. They settle down together to enjoy happily ever after. Until the inevitable, "Honey, I think you have more than enough shoes now" conversation when it all goes very wrong.
The Shoe Fairy borrows unashamedly from such great storytellers as Hans Christian Anderson, CS Lewis and even Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. It is a quirky and surreal film, packed with primary colours, two dimensional landscapes and strange, silent exchanges of communication. On occasion, Dodo's shoes vibrate, weep or smile and there is other symbolism that is equally unsubtle and disconcerting.
But Vivian Hsu as Dodo is very good, the smiley prince is charming and together they do find true happiness. And though we are not convinced that true happiness equals one black sheep and one white sheep, we can believe that owning a room full of shoes is a good start.
The only extra on the DVD is the trailer.
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