Not too long ago I posed a simple task for myself. To simply write about each film that I see at this year’s Melbourne International Film Festival. While some are taking the time to see 60 films in 17 days, I cannot afford this luxury – mainly due to time! How wonderful it would be to lock myself away from the world for 17 days and not have to worry about anything that is not film festival related. Alas, the saddening truth prevails, and my attempt at partially establishing this ideal begins.
The task will see me writing at least 200 words about each film I visit.
First up, there was the exciting invitation of the opening night film (and after party…) and the screening of the Belgium/French/Australian co-production of The Fairy.
Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon and Bruno Romy have made their third piece for the screen with La fée. Their work is reminiscent of silent film heavyweights such as Keaton and Chaplin, and of course an obvious influence from Jacques Tati is evident.
Dom works on reception in a dodgy French hotel. One night he meets Fiona the Fairy. She grants him three wishes. After his first two wishes are granted, his third wish hangs in the air, allowing their relationship to continue. From here we discover that the fairy indeed is less magical and more hysterical. After escaping from the local mental hospital, Fiona is thus returned and in a matter of seconds develops the quickest, hysterical pregnancy seen on film.
The Fairy is charming, light hearted, warm and slightly demented. Abel, Gordon and Romy are truly wonderful in their element. While it may have been a definite safe choice for an opening night film, the easy accessibility of the film makes it just as risky as some of the previous choices by MIFF.
The Fairy screened as MIFF’s opening night film on Thursday 21st at 7.30pm.