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H (2005)
The Shoe Fairy


Reviewed by: JohnR
Date: 01/07/2007
Summary: It Put A Spell On Me

The previous reviewer has summed up this film nicely, and I haven't much to add and have nothing to disagree with. I do want to emphasize one thing he said, though: this is a fairy tale. I was one who read many fairy tales when I was a kid and those worlds were very different than the regular one. There's a different kind of humor; a different kind of happiness; different kinds of logic and danger. The Shoe Fairy brought me back to a fairy tale world for the first time since I was a kid. Just an incredibly insightful and effective job by Robin Lee. (So if you hated fairy tales when you were young, you'll probably be annoyed by this film.)

This is the first film by a woman (Robin Lee wrote and directed) in which a woman fails to achieve true happiness in a relationship and the man is not blamed for it. Not just not blamed, but not responsible. I don't see anywhere near all the movies that come out, but this is the first I've seen like this, and as such I consider it a breakthrough. Prior to this, the most one could hope for in these situations was that the female director would treat the villainous male with sympathy and fairness. But in The Shoe Fairy, it's the woman who's treated with sympathy and fairness. The director seems to be asking, "Ladies, you wish for a Knight In Shining Armor, have you checked to make sure you're truly The Princess and worthy of him?"

Reviewer Score: 8

Reviewed by: dandan
Date: 11/02/2006
Summary: a black sheep and a white sheep...

another product of andy lau's 'focus : first cuts' stable sees taiwan's robin lee make his/her (?) directorial debut. the film is a modern fairytale, narrated by lau, which tells the story of dodo (vivian hsu, who is never less than adorable).

dodo was born with a condition which meant she couldn't walk; confined to a wheelchair, her greatest pleasure was being read fairytales by her parents. dodo wishes to have normal feet, a wish that is granted by pioneering surgery. dodo now has perfect feet and, as she grows from a girl into a woman, indulges them with many pairs of beautiful shoes.

dodo seems happy and she even meets a man, dr smiley (duncan lai), whom she falls in love with. still, before she had her surgery, a fairytale witch told her she'd never be truely happy, until she had a black sheep and a white sheep in her home...

this is a very enjoyable, if at times bittersweet, tale of love and happiness. lee has crafted a shiny, colourful world for dodo to inhabit and vivian hsu is, dare i say, a delight. the narrative glides simply along with nice doses of humour, kookiness and a sweet, dreamy quality.

nice...