Marion Hart
April 03, 1998 AT 05:00 AM EST

Fairy Tale: A True Story

Current Status
In Season

We gave it a C+

Based on a real ruckus caused by two little English girls (played by Florence Hoath and Elizabeth Earl) whose doctored photos of fairies were believed to be real, this WWI-era yarn, resplendent with mossy glens, enchanting Edwardian interiors, and very modern F/X is truly lovely. But it’s hard not to get peeved by Fairytale — A True Story‘s demand that we suspend disbelief even as it piles on the details of the debate between the girls’ champion, Sherlock Holmes creator Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Peter O’Toole), and magician Harry Houdini (Harvey Keitel), who initially has his doubts about the beautiful buzzing creatures but then goes soft. Would that the film made it that easy for us. C

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