For Reel


The Fairy (2011)
April 10, 2012, 4:14 am
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , , , ,

Director(s): Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon & Bruno Romy

The collaborations of French comedians Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon, and Bruno Romy play as modest tributes to the likes of both their silent forefathers in the genre and the great Jacques Tati. Abel and Gordon, the stars of their third feature, The Fairy, are fascinating, highly photogenic presences – their long, slender bodies are fully in their control, moving with tremendous dexterity or, when it is required, humorous gracelessness. Sometimes, as in the several dance sequences of The Fairy, they’re performing somewhere in between. Easy as the team is to root for given the likable quirks of their comedic sensibilities (Gordon performs what might be the funniest lethal overdose in cinema history), they haven’t quite yet met their physical aptitude with great filmmaking. The best work of Keaton, Chaplin, and Lloyd is distinguished by the precision of their rhythm. They would know just when the audience peaks with laughter, and then immediately cut or move on to the next gag. Abel, Gordon, and Romy lack this instinct – some gags barely sustain themselves (such as a late chase sequences), and others hardly explore what could be further mined (an escape from a mental hospital is a highlight, but also a missed opportunity). Nevertheless, their scruffy appeal nearly saves The Fairy, making it affable company for its meager, though still excessive running time.

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