out of Five
Running time: 93
This charming, if not a little odd, French romantic comedy starts off well but loses its way in the second half as it becomes a little far fetched and trips over its goofy quirks.
What’s it all about?
Written and directed by three of its leading cast members (Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon, Bruno Romy), The Fairy tells the story of Dom (Abel), a lonely hotel clerk, whose life is transformed by Fiona (Gordon), a guest at the hotel who upon her arrival announces she’s a fairy and grants him three wishes. After making two of his wishes come true, Fiona mysteriously disappears one night and Dom, who is now besotted, makes it his mission to search all over Le Havre until he finds her. There’s also a small subplot involving African immigrants attempting to hop the ferry to England.
With its complete and utterly bizarre storyline and enthusiastic cast, The Fairy is a delight to watch overall, starting off terrifically and featuring some terribly amusing (albeit random) scenes that would fit perfectly in a Michel Gondry advert. Both Gordon and Abel are brilliant in their roles, performing their slapstick goofs passionately and the supporting cast provide some worthy and entertaining side stories.
The cinematography relies heavily on its coastal setting and as a result it oozes warmth and serenity and the recurrence of Dinah Washington’s rendition of What A Difference A Day Makes flatters the film’s romantic and light-hearted components.
Despite a promising start, The Fairy loses its way in the second half as it begins to tread a fine line between charming and goofy. The moment it falls off track begins when Gordon and Abel take part in a naked (aside from some modesty covering seaweed) underwater dance scene with jellyfish, which although is tongue-in-cheek, wears a little thin and truly pushes its luck. After that, a lot of its gags fall short and the film spirals into complete and utter ridiculousness, but nevertheless, The Fairy remains a fun and easy watch throughout.
Completely and utterly bonkers, The Fairy is a unique and light-hearted French romantic comedy, which despite falling off track slightly in the second half, is still a delightfully fun and pleasant film to watch.