The Evil Fairy Queen Poster

The Evil Fairy Queen (2024) Review

We like to think of fairies as cute, playful and occasionally mischievous creatures, but that’s the Disney version. The creatures of folklore tended to be nasty and downright evil, frequently kidnapping humans, especially infants and children. The Evil Fairy Queen is the most recent film, following after Unwelcome and There’s Something in the Barn, to bring that darker view to the screen.

The Evil Fairy Queen actually opens with a brief animated sequence explaining that, followed by a woman finding out why you shouldn’t walk through the forest after dark. Having set the tone, the film then introduces us to the Richards, Kate (Julia Czartoryski, Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens, The Remote Office), Tom (Martyn Spendlove, The Mystery of Mr E, Fortune Favours the Fantabulous) and their daughters Adelaide (Aniela Leyland) and Violet (Kitty Sudbery, Creek Encounters, Christmas with the Pups).

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They’ve just received a letter from Kate’s great aunt Elspeth (Judy Tcherniak, The Surgeon, The Killing Tree) whose been estranged from the rest of the family since Kate was a girl. She says she wants to reconcile with them before It’s too late and can they visit as soon as possible. What’s more, she offers them the farm she lives on, and seems very anxious that they accept her offer. Since they were planning to move, their house not feeling like home since the death of their middle daughter, they ignore the oddness of these events and agree to move in.

Often writers send me scripts to read and when James sent me “The Evil Fairy Queen” I fell in love with the mischievous fairies and knew that I had to make the film. Melisandria and Radella are two of the cheekiest and most entertaining antagonists that I had ever read. But it was a horror and I wanted to make something to watch with my family!

Simon Wells

Writer James Wrench and director Simon Wells (Carnivore: Werewolf of London, Dragon Kingdom) create an atmosphere that is more ominous than actually scary, which is appropriate because although The Evil Fairy Queen started out as a straight-up horror film, the decision was made to turn it into a more family friendly bit of dark fantasy. To that effect, we meet Melisandria (Hannah Harris, Battle Over Britain, A Crown Fit for a Prince) who not only hasn’t aged since Kate was a little girl but introduces Violet to an actual fairy, Radella who is CGI in her miniature form and played by Megan Mcelduff in her human form.

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All the other elements you would expect are here, Kate has nightmares, one of the locals, Dillon (Luke Hunter, In Search of Fear, The Last Sex Lies & Depravity) warns them to leave immediately, somebody gets possessed, etc. The story follows a rather familiar path, ending with Violet being taken and her family having to rescue her. What is unusual is how well the film walks the line between not making things too intense for younger viewers and keeping it interesting for adults. The film moves along nicely and stays interesting enough that I was never bored, even if I was never really kept in suspense either.

While the film does have a body count, it avoids gore, with the fairies turning into dust when they’re killed. It’s a fairly basic effect and works well given the kind of budget The Evil Fairy Queen was shot on. That budget also means the fairies are usually seen in their human form rather than tiny Tinkerbell lookalikes and their kingdom, Elfame, looks a lot like some English scrubland.

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A decent script and some good performances help distract this viewer’s attention from the lack of flashy effects, and kids should be too busy worrying about Violet’s fate to notice. I won’t deny it would have been nicer with more and better effects, but it’s a solid film and can get by on its story without the help of lavish effects.

The Evil Fairy Queen is one of those films you can watch with your kids and not be bored, or for those who like their films without much that could be called objectionable, even if you don’t have kids. Either way, you should have a good time with it.

Vision Films will release The Evil Fairy Queen to VOD and Digital Platforms on April 16th.

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