The Fairy is a capricious delight. The entire film is in essence a series of sight gags that are so silly that they reach a point of nonsensical delirium that you wish would never end. The film hits in fairly much from the opening scenes with hotel porter Dominique Abel dealing with an English tourist (Philippe Martz) amid absurd English-French translations. The Englishman is refused entry because he has a dog whereupon he returns and signs in with the dog hidden in a bag, although this has a habit of walking off on its own and has to be kept on a leash Have you seen my bag? becomes a frequently asked line throughout. Some scenes become positively hysterical Fiona Gordon borrowing a dress from a mannequin in a storefront window then going into a shoe store asking Have you got any running shoes? whereupon she puts them on and runs out the door. The sight gags come in the best tradition of Jacques Tati a round robin that involves a wad of money being borrowed off Dominique Abel and paid to various people standing in a line and then back to him; Fiona Gordon giving Dominique Abel a back massage; the scenes trying to rescue the baby off the back of the car with the two of them balanced on a scooter; the severely myopic owner of the cafe (Bruno Romy) who bumps into everything; a poker game in the asylum with the patients using pills as chips and then Fiona Gordon picking through her winnings as though they were finger food and instantly conking out; or the attempts to smuggle Fiona Gordon out of the asylum in a disguise wrapped around Dominique Abel. The two central performances gangly, scruffy Dominique Abel and the entirely carefree and infectiously enchanting Fiona Gordon are perfectly matched.
The Fairy seems wholly unconcerned as to whether Fiona Gordon actually is a fairy or not. The scriptthrows the idea in and the film then forgets about it for the most part. There are oddly fantastical scenes she does appear to manifest Dominique Abels wishes (the scooter, the lifelong supply of fuel), causes an out of order elevator to start working when she gets into it, is able to fulfil another mans wish to fly and becomes instantly pregnant when her stomach inflates like a balloon (with an accompanying hiss of compressed air), while at other times her actions seem much more earthbound with it being seen that she may well be no more than a psychiatric patient.
(Screening at the Vancouver International Film Festival)