6.5/10
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FairyTale: A True Story (1997)

Trailer
1:33 | Trailer

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ON DISC
In 1917, two children take a photograph, which is soon believed by some to be the first scientific evidence of the existence of fairies.

Director:

Charles Sturridge

Writers:

Albert Ash (story), Tom McLoughlin (story) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Harvey Keitel ... Harry Houdini
Jason Salkey ... James Collins
Peter O'Toole ... Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Lara Morgan Lara Morgan ... Jean Doyle
Adam Franks Adam Franks ... Adrian Doyle
Guy Witcher ... Denis Doyle
Joseph May ... Houdini's Assistant
John Bradley John Bradley ... Portly Gentleman
Anna Chancellor ... Peter Pan
Florence Hoath Florence Hoath ... Elsie Wright
Phoebe Nicholls ... Polly Wright
Leonard Kavanagh Leonard Kavanagh ... Stage Manager
Elizabeth Earl Elizabeth Earl ... Frances Griffiths
Paul McGann ... Arthur Wright
Anton Lesser ... Wounded Corporal
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Storyline

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 <stebinsbob@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Believe.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for brief mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 October 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fairy Tale: A True Story See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,515,323, 26 October 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$14,036,249, 11 January 1998
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The last film of Don Henderson. See more »

Quotes

Harry Houdini: Anything can be faked by anyone.
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Soundtracks

The Coming Of The Queen
Composed by Zbigniew Preisner
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User Reviews

They told the wrong story
27 November 1999 | by Clive-SilasSee all my reviews

This film ostensibly tells the "true story" of the girls who photographed the "Cottingley Fairies" in Yorkshire. But the film takes the point of view that the photographs were genuine and that the fairies were real.

In old age, the girls involved admitted it was all a hoax - so why does the film treat what they say as true?

There is a scene in which Arthur Conan Doyle tries to convince committed rationalist Harry Houdini (Harvey Keitel) that what the girls say must be true - after all how could they, two young girls with apparently no knowledge of photography, fake the photographs and fool some of the greatest minds in the country? Houdini maintains, of course, that they have done so, however unlikely it may seem.

It strikes me that what Houdini says is correct and that THIS IS A BETTER STORY TO TELL! It is precisely because it seems so unlikely that makes it such a good story (now that we know the truth).

My view is that the two little girls were hoaxers, but that doesn't mean I don't have an enormous amount of respect for their achievement. Surely a better tribute is paid to them by showing fully the extent of their cleverness?


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