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Fairy Tale - A True Story (1997)

Paul McGann , Florence Hoath , Charles Sturridge  |  PG |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (199 customer reviews)

Price: $9.08 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Paul McGann, Florence Hoath, Elizabeth Earl, Harvey Keitel, Jason Salkey
  • Directors: Charles Sturridge
  • Writers: Albert Ash, Ernie Contreras, Tom McLoughlin
  • Producers: Albert Ash, Bruce Davey, Margaret French-Isaac, Paul Tucker
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: November 11, 2003
  • Run Time: 99 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (199 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000AUHQR
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,800 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Fairy Tale - A True Story" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Do you believe? Young Frances and Elsie do. They say they've encountered the supernatural. They've met fairies. The photos the girls take of the winged beings put them at the center of a real-life controversy that sweeps England during World War I. Everyone is caught up in the excitement, including two of the era's most renowned men: Sherlock Holmes' author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Peter O'Toole) and master illusionist Harry Houdini (Harvey Keitel). Are the girls' photos real or a clever hoax? One thing is for sure: with enchantment, a sense of wonder and glorious special effects, FairyTale: A True Story is superb family entertainment.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
108 of 109 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "If You Believe in Fairies...Clap Your Hands!" November 18, 2003
I saw "Fairy Tale - A True Story", when it had it's theatrical release and I was utterly charmed and moved by this wonderful movie. I am so glad that it has finally been released to the DVD format.The story is based upon the true life events surrounding the famous and sensational 'Cottingly fairies photographs'.The film takes place during the dark days of WWI Britain. A young Elsie Wright (Florence Hoath) is sent off to live with relatives, because her father is 'missing in action'.Elsie becomes fast friends with her twelve year old, cousin, Frances (Elizebeth Earl) both of whom seem to have a playful fascination with the subject of fairies. One day the girls borrow an old camera and go off to a local brook to take pictures. When the photographs are later developed, they show images of what seem to be real, live fairies!Through a series of events the photographs fall into the famous hands of Sherlock Holmes Writer, Sir Author Conan Doyle (Pete O'Toole) and Magician & Escape Artist, Harry Houdini (Harvey Keitel). Doyle publishes the photographs in a national magazine and causes a sensation throughout the country.Are the pictures real or did these two young girls pull off the hoax of the century? The movie puts it's own twist on the facts and attempts to come up with some very interesting answers.Director, Charles Sturridge and Screen Writer, Ernie Contreras have created a magical and moving film about the subject of faith. Sometimes if you believe in something hard enough, maby it can come true. This is found throughout the film. It applies to everything from the belief in the unseen (such as fairies, spirits of love ones), the return of a father, or even the faith needed to win a brutal war.The acting in this movie is splendid. Read more ›
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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
For young and old alike,this delightful film has it all! Based on the true story of two young girls who claim to have seen fairies in England during WW1,"Fairytale:A True Story" features superb acting throughout,especially Elizabeth Earl and Florence Hoath as Francis Griffiths and Elsie Wright, whose fairy sightings stir up quite a bit of controversy throughout wartime England. Among the people caught up in the excitement are Sir Arthur Conan Doyle,brilliantly portrayed by Peter O"Toole and Harry Houdini,featuring Harvey Keitel in one of his finest performances. Paul McGann and Phobe Nicols are also wonderful as Elsie's parents. I really can't say enough about this film. Brilliantly cast and beautifully photographed,it is enchanting entertainment from beginning to end. The film score is even well worth the price if you can still find the CD! This film is not your average children's movie and I have read alot of reviews that ask weather this film was aimed at children or adults.This could very well be why it was not more of a commercial success.A pity, because I believe this film offers something for all ages.I also regret that I have not seen Florence Hoath in many other roles,save for "The Governess" and I haven't seen Elizabeth Earl at all-they deserve more recognition!
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterly delightful for children and adults alike March 21, 2005
Don't be fooled by thinking this delightful film is just for children. I just happened on the movie on TV yesterday and was absolutely captivated and I am middle-aged. I already knew the background story about the Cottingley fairies and was curious as to how this would be dealt with on film. The movie did not disappoint in the least. Although the account is, of course, fictionalized a bit, that fact does not deter from its charm. In fact, I would imagine those unfamiliar with the true events might even more interested -- and even compelled to read even more of the story. Do yourself a favor, watch this movie, I am sure you will be as captivated by this charming story as much as I was. HIGHLY recommended.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful, wonderful film.. December 2, 2004
By Portia
I find it hard to articulate just why this film moves me so much, i just wish as I see it for the 10th or so time, that I could watch it without brings up so many issues so cleverly, it offers consolation, it brings in the concepts of magic and faith in an intense and beautiful way, the acting is fact I think this is my most favourite movie of all time.....not a childrens film, though some will love it,it's actually a movie for tired old grownups!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You Must See This Film September 22, 1999
By Denise
Format:VHS Tape
FairyTale has at it's core a story that can't fail to touch your heart. It works because the special effects never overshadow this fact. It also shows that a film for the whole family can be made that isn't sappy or never asks for your emotions. FairyTale is also a treat visually-it's beautifully photographed and gives a real sense of the time and place in it's sets and costumes. All of the performances are terrific,particularly the children who don't slip into the cloying cuteness that marks so many 'family' movies. I was also really impressed with the acting of Paul McGann as the skeptical father Arthur Wright. His disbelief of the fairies and the girls' story never overshadows his love for them,and the grief over his son's death that has become part of Arthur's personality is played with extraordinary subtlety,much more difficult to do than showy tears. The scene in which Arthur is finally able to say his son's name again is played by Mr.McGann with quietly moving grace. I think the PG rating this film received was unwarranted and played a part in it's not being a bigger success. This film is perfect for everyone,children included. My nieces and nephew love it,and you will too.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A lovely true story
Published 1 day ago by Jane Doe
5.0 out of 5 stars I do Believe in Faeries, I do, I do!
Loved the movie, and bought this because I have the VCR version. This movie is soooo good. The movie stems from the true life story of two young girls who swear that they took... Read more
Published 5 days ago by Charlene A. Kowalski
5.0 out of 5 stars Watch it!
I love the story!
Published 8 days ago by Susan
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Good quality film and good acting.
Published 11 days ago by Michele
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 15 days ago by I. Kozlik
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
excellent movie you need to check it out
Published 19 days ago by kim
5.0 out of 5 stars Really good, heart warming films of a still unsolved mystery
Really good, heart warming films of a still unsolved mystery, at least in my mind. The children make this film, but Peter Otoole, Harvey Keitel and Bill Nighy are wonderful
Published 23 days ago by Walter M. Speck
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful family movie
Our family watched this the other night and everyone enjoyed it (I have a 9 year old son and 7 seven year old daughter).
Published 1 month ago by Sara B.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fairies
Whether you "believe" in fairies, or not, this movie is very entertaining. The story is suposedly based on fact, I don't know for sure, but it's a fun family-friendly movie... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Pearl
5.0 out of 5 stars Every child should own this movie
It was a favorite of my daughters. We even went so far as to build our own fairy house from tree branches after a storm. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Liz Crook
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