6.5/10
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57 user 41 critic

FairyTale: A True Story (1997)

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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 »
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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
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The last film of Don Henderson. See more »

Quotes

Polly Wright: I don't know which frightens me more, that the children are lying or that they are telling the truth.
See more »

Connections

Version of BBC2 Play of the Week: Fairies (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

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
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User Reviews

A Thoroughly engaging, dreamy and beautiful period film!
18 June 2002 | by Lee-107See all my reviews

After watching this film I realize that it is not so much about whether it "was really" true or untrue...the essence of the film, made amply clear is the Belief of the two girls in fairies that made them see them in the first place. On a metaphysical level the film says that if you really believe in something, however odd or outlandish, it will come true or be true. There's no sense in being contentious about the basis of this film because that is very much valid as I have pointed out above. To do so, as I see some people have done over here, is to not only misunderstand the message of the film but to downplay its other qualities.

The acting of Florence Hoath as Elsie and Elizabeth Earl as Frances is really impressive. Both have done complete justice to their characters. The rest of the cast, Paul McGann as Elsie's father, Peter O'Toole as Arthur Conan Doyle and Harvey Keitel as Houdini are also really good. I also absolutely agree with most of the reviewers here that the early 20th century has been evoked very well. But of course, the best thing about the film is the cinematography. It's gorgeous! The woods where the girls encounter the fairies are evoked beautifully, they're appropriately dreamy and realistic. Praise must definitely be due to the set decorators who have done a brilliant job with the house that the Wrights live in and especially the room which Elsie and Frances share. It's a dream garret room! The music is also quite good. I thoroughly recommend this film, certainly for those who believe in Believing things and also for those who like to watch a really well made period film.


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