Based on factual accounts, this is the story of two young girls that, somehow, have the ability to take pictures of winged beings... which certainly causes quite a stir throughout England during the time of the first World War. Everyone, except the girls who think it's quite normal, are excited about this "photographic proof" that fairies exist... even the great Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini pay the girls a visit.Written by
BOB STEBBINS <email@example.com>
The film is based on the true story of the Cottingley Fairies. In the summer of 1917, Frances Griffiths (then ten years old) and her cousin Elsie Wright (then sixteen years old) were living with Elsie's parents in the town of Cottingley in West Yorkshire. Using Arthur Wright's camera, the girls took a series of pictures of themselves with fairies in the nearby woodland brook of Cottingley Beck. (The woodland scenes in "FairyTale: A True Story" are filmed in Cottingley Beck, the actual location where Frances and Elsie supposedly encountered the fairies in 1917.) The photographs became public in 1919 (not during World War I, as depicted in the film), when Elsie's mother gave the photos to Edward Gardner, President of the Theosophical Society of Bradford. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle published the photos with an article on spiritualism in "The Strand" Magazine in December 1920. Opinions over the authenticity of the photos were divided. Several photographic experts examined them and pronounced them "genuine," while other photo experts found "evidence of fakery." (A few experts who examined the photos noted that the "fairies" had "Parisienne-style haircuts," which were popular in the day.) In the end, no real harm came from the photos. The two girls never accepted any money for them, or tried to swindle anyone with their claims of fairy encounters. Years later, as adults, the girls admitted they had faked the photos using cardboard cutouts of fairies taken from a children's book. Elsie explained that they were too embarrassed to admit the truth about the photos after Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the legendary creator of Sherlock Holmes, accepted them as genuine. However, Frances insisted until her death that at least one of the "fairy photos" was real. Frances died in 1986, and Elsie died in 1988. The original photos, and the cameras the girls used to take them, are now in the National Media Museum in Bradford, England. See more »
See the Conquering Hero Comes
from "Judas Maccabeus"
Composed by George Frideric Handel (as Georg Friedrich Händel)
Arranged by Christopher Blood
Performed by the combined brass ensembles of St. Peter's & St. Oliver's Schools, York See more »
Dramatic fairy tale aims for a more suitable crowd.
There are two different points of view that FAIRYTALE's difficult story can be told: the children and the adults. Apparently, it looks like the adults will be far more interested than the children because of its long discussions about fairy sightings and its overly dramatic nature; this actually is the kind of audience this movie was shooting for. On the children's side, it is magical in the make-believe universe, but not without a couple of horrifying and sorrowful moments (the scarred-face soldier out of WWI, for instance), and may end up as boredom along the way. The fairies and their surroundings would have looked better on the screen if they appeared larger, but there some things to believe in, just as the opening scene tells you; they do exist as fantasy figures to enlighten a child's imagination. The two young girls pull off some charming performances, and some luscious scenery is vivid all throughout. FAIRYTALE should have been a real "family" fantasy picture in the way it is presented, but stands out its own way as a movie that focuses on a slight examination of sightings that is virtually unexplainable (almost similar to science fiction!). Children will most likely appreciate the fairies more than the movie itself. And where is Mel Gibson???
9 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this