Fairy Tale Films
Fairy Tale Films
Pauline Greenhil and
Sidney Eve Matrix, eds.
6x9, 270 pages

Published: 2010

ISBN 978-0-87421-781-0
paper $26.95

ISBN 978-0-87421-782-7
ebook $20.95

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PAULINE GREENHILL is professor of women's and gender studies at the University of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. She was co-editor with Liz Locke and Theresa Vaughan of Encyclopedia of Women's Folklore and Folklife. Her most recent book is Make the Night Hideous: Four English-Canadian Charivaris, 1881-1940. Her work has appeared in Signs, Marvels & Tales, Resources for Feminist Research, Journal of American Folklore, Canadian Journal of Women and the Law, and parallax, among others.

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SIDNEY EVE MATRIX is Queen's National Scholar and assistant professor of film and media at Queen's University in Kingston. She teaches mass communications and popular film. Her research involves digital technology cultural and consumer trends.

Fairy Tale Films

Visions of Ambiguity

Pauline Greenhill and
Sidney Eve Matrix, eds.

foreword by Jack Zipes


Also by Pauline Greenhill - Unsettling Assumptions


The essays in Fairy Tale Film seek to keep our eyes open and sharpen our perspective. Folk and fairy tales pervade our lives constantly through television soap operas and commercials, in comic books and cartoons, in school plays and storytelling performances, in our superstitions and prayers for miracles, and in our dreams and daydreams. The artistic re-creations of fairy-tale plots and characters in filmıthe parodies, the aesthetic experimentation, and the mixing of genres to engender new insights into art and lifeıare significant because they mirror possibilities of estranging ourselves from designated roles and the conventional patterns of the classical tales. As Greenhill and Matrix stress in their introduction, "the mirror of fairy-tale film reflects not so much what its audience members actually are but how they see themselves and their potential to develop (or, likewise, to regress)."

—Jack Zipes, from the foreword

In this, the first collection of essays to address the development of fairy tale film as a genre, Pauline Greenhill and Sidney Eve Matrix stress, "the mirror of fairy-tale film reflects not so much what its audience members actually are but how they see themselves and their potential to develop (or, likewise, to regress)." As Jack Zipes says further in the foreword, “Folk and fairy tales pervade our lives constantly through television soap operas and commercials, in comic books and cartoons, in school plays and storytelling performances, in our superstitions and prayers for miracles, and in our dreams and daydreams. The artistic re-creations of fairy-tale plots and characters in film—the parodies, the aesthetic experimentation, and the mixing of genres to engender new insights into art and life— mirror possibilities of estranging ourselves from designated roles, along with the conventional patterns of the classical tales.”

Here, scholars from film, folklore, and cultural studies move discussion beyond the well-known Disney movies to the many other filmic adaptations of fairy tales and to the widespread use of fairy tale tropes, themes, and motifs in cinema.

Book Review Journal of Folklore Research Sept 23, 2012 / Lydia Bringerud, Indiana University

Book Review Marvels & Tales 2012 / Cathy Lynn Preston, University of Colorado

Book Review Journal of Folklore Research June 2, 2011 / Daniel P. Compora, University of Toledo