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  • carflo1 November 2003
    Faerie Tale Theatre is a gem, a jewel, of a series. They are wonderful for children, but make sure the adults in the family watch them also. My personal favorite is The Frog Prince with Robin Williams and Teri Garr. Teri Garr has best line in the show: "I didn't turn down all those princes to shack up with a frog". Although The Frog Prince is my favorite, others are wonderful to. Mick Jagger is remarkably good Emperor in The Nightingale. Lee Remick is unbelievably beautiful as The Snow Queen. The Three Pigs has Jeff Goldblum as the Big Bad Wolf with Billy Crystal as the responsible pig brother. The prize goes to Valerie Perrine as a lady pig (not in the original story) that would have Miss Piggy eating her heart out. Joan Collins is the wicked step-mother and the wicked witch in Hansel and Gretal and she was never more wicked. Shelley Duval has created a masterpiece in this series. If we could vote on a series I would give it a 10/10. Even if you don't have any children, please try at least one. It will be your first but not your last.
  • turboman281416 November 2001
    i dont know why but i always used to call this the Krofft Supershow of the 80's. maybe that is pushing it but anyone who saw this show would not disagree the imagination and fun of this series. Each episode was roughly an hour long and each episode dedicated to diferent Fairy Tales starring some of the biggest names in the busness. The show was produced, narrated and opened by Shelly DuVaul. Its witty writing and good acting were a guaranteed hit. the show ran from 1982 to 1987 with random syndications all over the place and was released on video by Playhouse(which arguably had the coolest beginning), CBS fox and Raz ma Taz or something like that. The show had some of the biggest directors like Francis Ford Coppola(Rip Van Winkle)and Tim Burton(Alladin and his Wonderful Lamp) directing some of the biggest stars such as

    Tatum O'Neal as goldilocks, Billy Crystal as Larry, the 3rd Pig, Robin Williams and Terri Garr in The Frog Prince, Jeff Goldblum as The Big Bad Wolf, Vinent Price as the magic mirror in snow white, Gregory Hines and Ben Vereen in Puss in Boots, Elliot Gould, Jean Stapleton and Dennis Christopher in Jack and the Beanstalk, Valerie Bertinelli, Lenard Nemoy, Robert Carradine and James Earl Jones in Alladin, Matthew Broderick and Jennifer Beals in Cinderella, Ricky Shroder and Joan Collins in Hansel and Gretal, Carrie Fisher as Thumbelina, Eric Idle in the Pied Piper of Hamlin, Carl Riner, James Belushi, Michael Richards and Paul Reubens in Pinnochio, MalcomMcDowell and Mary Steinburgen in Little Red Riding Hood, Pam Dawber as the Little Mermaid, Shelly Duvaul, Herve` Vilachez and Ned Beatty in Rumpelstiltskin, Art Carney and Alan Arkin in The Emperors New Clothes, Mick Jagger in The Nightingale, Liza Manelli in the Princess and the Pea, Howie Mandell in The Princess Who Had Never Laughed, Christopher Reeves in Sleeping Beauty, Lee Remick as the Snow Queen, Elizabeth McGovern as Snow White and Harry Dean Stanton as Rip Van Winkle.

    And there was many more than that. that was basicly the run down of each episode and the bigger stars in each one. i used to have all 26 episodes on video but now am down to about 15. with the re-release of i think 12(plus a mail away princess who had never laughed) by Raz Ma Taz you shouldnt have too much of a problem obtaining the better ones. Blockbuster has a handful too. I highly recommend checking these out. You may just love these more than your kids. This show is perfect for the young and the young at heart. I cant recommend it enough.
  • I have such great memories of all of these stories set to film. I particularly loved The Snowqueen and The Seven Dancing Princesses. What a great way to get to know classic stories and much better than what's out there for kids today. Someone should put them on DVD, I'd buy them for my future child
  • I Loved this show as a child.I would always rent them at my local Blockbuster. They amazed me always.Families should consider buying all of them.I have seen all and they are beautiful and entertaining.My favorites are Cinderella,Snow White,Rapunzel,and Sleeping Beauty.Young and old will love them.
  • I remember when I heard that Fairie Tale Theatre was coming out. I remember trying to find every way that I could to convince my parents to get Showtime on which they aired. When I finally did get to see them I was spell bound.

    Each one of these stories is literally hand crafted by the directors (some of them famous directors like Francis Ford Coppella) and Shelley Duvall to reflect a certain style. An example being the Sleeping Beauty tale was set in Russia with the sets and costumes designed to look like scenes from classic Russian motifs, the music from the Russian ballet. Another being the direct rip off of the classic Jean Cocteau film "Beauty and the Beast".

    All of these were designed with the intent of entertaining not only children but adults. Some of the best moments in these are only things that adults will understand. Christopher Reeve does a fantastic job in his multi-role part in "Sleeping Beauty" as does Malcolm McDowell as the Wolf in "Little Red Riding Hood". McDowell infuses the character with a subtle dark sensuality. His chemistry with his then wife Mary Steenburgen is strong.

    Probably the best one of all is the "Three Little Pigs" with Jeff Goldblum (as the Big Bad Wolf), Valerie Perrine (as a ravishing piglette), and Billy Crystal(as one of the three little pigs). The writing in this one is completely off the wall.

    The only episode I was disappointed with was Tony Bill's version of "The Princess and the Pea", featuring Tom Conti and Liza Minnelli. I saw no chemistry between Conti and Minnelli, and I think some of the stuff in it was a little too highbrow for kids.

    The only overall problems that I noted with the series itself were that the pacing tended to be off in some of the shows, and some of actors tended to ham it up big time and be a little too over the top (like Vanessa Redgrave in "Snow White").
  • I had Showtime when I was a kid and they would air all the "Fairie Tale Theatre" episodes. My favorite were "The Snow Queen" with Melissa Gilbert and "Sleeping Beauty" with Carol Cane and Christopher Reeves. They brought these old tales magnificently to life. I haven't seen one since I was about 7 and now I'm 24. I hope maybe one day I will be able to see another one.
  • I grew up enraptured of FAERIE TALE THEATRE. My sister and I would watch them and then act them out later playing dress-up. We even went as far as re-enacting the publicity ad where Shelley Duvall (God bless her for coming up with the idea for this show!!!) would sit on the PRINCESS AND THE PEA set surrounded by hundreds of old antique books and introduce several different episodes of this timeless series. My favorites would have to be (1) LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD (2) THE PRINCESS AND THE PEA and (3) GOLDILOCKS AND THE THREE BEARS. Others are THE THREE LITTLE PIGS, SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS, Cinderella, RAPUNZEL, THE DANCING PRINCESSES and THE LITTLE MERMAID. Malcolm McDowell as the Wolf in RED RIDING HOOD, Vanessa Redgrave as the evil queen in SNOW WHITE, Eve Arden as the Stepmother, Karen Black as the Sea Witch and Gena Rowlands as the Witch in RAPUNZEL are by far the best portrayals. And, miracle of miracles, they are FINALLY AVAILABLE ON DVD!!!! Praise Jesus!!!! Check them out at unbelievably discounted prices of just $6.98 each @starmaker2.com and amazon.com at the same price! This is truly a series that all can enjoy no matter what your age is.
  • So I used to watch this as a kid, just like all of you, and I loved each and every one of them (my personal favorite being The Dancing Princesses.

    I am now a sophomore in college, and when I found out about the DVDs my friend and I bought them.

    Now... we watch them for the unbelievably blatant sexual references that we so clearly did not get when we were kids. I mean really...

    Examples:

    Sleeping Beauty:

    "Use your mouth!" ... and then they get to sloppy second A little mini Dr. Ruth in a chest that teaches the king and queen how to have sex??? "Charity Starts.. right here", pointing to her scantily clad self

    Rapunzel:

    "I want Radishes!" "Are you sure you wouldn't like a nice cucumber instead?" as he leans over in bed

    Little Red Riding Hood:

    The explanation of carving the wood/chopping it down... I don't even want to describe it.

    I know there are more, but I'm tired and have homework to do.

    I just wanted to see if we were the only ones who found the sexual nature of this series so entertaining.

    That, and the fact that Shelley Duvall was clearly on acid the entire time she made these.
  • If there was one television series that I could give an award to, this would be it. It was one of the most outstanding show i've ever seen. It came on when I was little, but as I grew older I still loved the show because of it's great actors. After watching it constantly on PBS, I taped all of the episodes when they became re-runs on the Disney Channel. If they ever do become re-runs again, i highly encourage everyone to watch it. You won't be disappointed.
  • I used to love watching these when they were screened during an afternoon. Really proper classic fairy tales, not messed about with or overly 'Disneyfied'.

    I loved particularly Beauty and the Beast with Klaus Kinski as the Beast and Susan Sarandon as Beauty even though it was virtually a direct lift from my all time favourite Beauty and the Beast movie, La Belle et La Bete, a Jean Cocteau classic from the 1940s. I have only just realised that these are available on DVD and have just treated myself to volume 1 - Rumplestiltskin and Rapunzel. They were delivered with humour and class by the most amazing stable of actors.

    Looking forward to a nostalgic wallow.
  • "Faerie Tale Theatre" is a series of fifty-minute adaptations of some of the most famous fairy-tales, starring established actors and celebrities in a variety of whimsical roles: Robin Williams as the Frog Prince, Mick Jagger as the Emperor in "The Nightingale", Vanessa Redgrave as the Queen in "Snow White" and Susan Sarandon as the beauty who fell for a beast. Made during the 80s, they have stood the test of time fairly well, even if their soft video appearance and somewhat cheesy electronic scores seem a bit hard to swallow for some nowadays. There are indeed a few things to raise a few eyebrows about ("Pinocchio" is a bit of a muddled affair, "Beauty and the Beast" essentially plagiarises Jean Cocteau's 1946 version of the story), but the episodes are more faithful to the original stories than many of their counterparts are, especially the ones that were adapted a few years later by Disney ("The Little Mermaid", "Aladdin").

    The "theatre" of the title is quite accurate, as most episodes have quite a theatrical nature to them in terms of effects, costume and sets, yet this doesn't do much disservice to the series. The writing does not seem aimed at any specific audience, and the result is a series that doesn't talk down to anyone. While the series may lack overall the enchanting polish and majesty of the Disney animated films or other major film productions, it provides an interesting and relatively faithful group of fairy-tale films. Recommended for the young and young-at-heart.
  • There has never been anything quite like this unique, distinct and charming family series from creator Shelley Duvall. It's remarkable that Duvall was able to draw so much A-list talent to these theatrical adaptations of various fairy tales, with participation from the likes of Susan Sarandon, Robin Williams, Matthew Broderick, Gena Rowlands, Helen Mirren, and even Klaus Kinski, among many others. That parade of famous faces becomes one of the show's most entertaining aspects, and it's fun to see that the majority of the guest performers seem to be enjoying themselves. There are so many terrific episodes along the way, like "The Little Mermaid," "Beauty and the Beast" (which borrows heavily from the 1946 French adaptation by Jean Cocteau and Rene Clement), "Hansel and Gretel," "Little Red Riding Hood," and the list goes on. It's admittedly dated but that's part of its retro charms, and what made the series so special throughout the 1980s for an entire generation of children watching PBS has survived the passing of time.
  • Well done show with great actors, original and funny storytelling of all the classic fairy tales. Show this to your kids immediately!
  • badscene6 November 2016
    80's crack. Anthology series starring just about every star you can think of: ie Robin Williams, Vincent Price, Susan Sarandon, Mick Jagger, Pee-Wee Herman. Every episode is a different fairy tale ranging from the well known and innocuous to the dark, scary and obscure. Also Tim Burton and Francis Ford Coppola both directed episodes. Sets are great and the music is usually pretty amazing.

    Best episodes in my opinion: Cinderella w Jennifer Beals and Matthew Broderick, Hansel and Gretl starring Joan Collins as a kid hungry cannibal and Snow White w/ Vincent Price, Vanessa Redgrave, and a dwarf named bubba.
  • I am 30, and have been watching the Fairie Tale Theatre's as far back as I can remember. I adored them as a child, and as an adult, I found it difficult to relocate them. Now, you can buy the entire box set, with every episode! I cannot stress enough how wonderful these 45 minute stories are. Each episode is filled with big name stars of then and today. I mean, some serious names-Mary Steenburgen, Mick Jagger, Sofia Coppola, Michael Richards, Robin Williams, Susan Sarandon, Jeff Bridges, Eric Idle, Vincent Price, and about a million more big name actors that will surprise you in each episode. Shelley Duvall is behind this masterpiece, and to this day, cannot get enough. From Goldilocks and the Three Bears to my favorite The Boy Who Left Home To Find out About the Shivers-every single one will leave you in awe. The acting is supreme, and the sets are even more unique. I have a serious collection of DVDs and box sets, but this one surpasses all the rest by a long shot. I recommend this set if you just want to enjoy cinematic beauty at its finest.
  • When I first heard about Shelley Duvall's Faerie Tale Theater, I was thinking "hey that is the same actress from 'The Shining!'" So, I had to check this series out and I was so amazed at what I saw from this show! "Shelley Duvall's Faerie Tale Theatre" was a television series in the 80s that presents various popular fairy tales in a theater format and featured famous celebrities during the 80s which included Robin Williams, Susan Sarandon, Eric Idle, Jeff Bridges, Billy Crystal and many more acting out the roles of the characters. This show used to come on Showtime and sometimes PBS when it first came out.

    Alright, now onto my opinions about this series! I thought that this series was brilliant beyond all reason! I loved the theater like style of this show, which made this series truly unique from any other show I have seen! Also, I love how some of the episodes take on a different twist on the classic fairy tales, such as "Sleeping Beauty" staring Bernadette Peters and Christopher Reeve where the story is told in the traditional Russian style fairy tale and "Puss in Boots" starring Gregory Hines and Ben Vereen where it stars an all African-American cast.

    If there are any cons for this series it would probably have to be the theater style special effects, meaning that there are set props shown everywhere on screen and so it causes the stories to be too unrealistic and outdated, but for anyone who loves fairy tales and love watching theater productions in the comfort of their home might not mind the somewhat outdated special effects.

    I would strongly recommend this series to anyone who loves fairy tales and theater productions and I'm sure that no one would be disappointed!
  • xox_B-A-M_xox28 January 2006
    Warning: Spoilers
    I remember watching these when I was younger, my grandma who worked at a library at the time often took the VHS's of them out for me.

    When watching these movies I often get a warm fuzzy feeling, a feeling of content. They are the kind of movies that you would sit down and watch in front of a fire place with a nice cup of hot chocolate and a blanket. These movies bring the stories to life. I often watch re-runs of them on the book channel, or watch the videos I own.

    I would suggest watching these movies if your sick of the hustle and bustle of Hollywood movies.

    If your tired of the hardcore action movies or horror flicks tune in to these.
  • Other reviews seem to focus on the odd ones that follow the original fairy tale instead of the pop-culture, animated versions. This series was a great showcase for comic actors like Robin Williams as the frog prince or Billy Crystal as one of the 3 little pigs. One of my favorites casts Leonard Nemoy as the evil Vizeer and James Earl Jones as the Genie in Aladdin. I also like Cinderella, Jack and the Bean Stalk, the Princess and the Pea, and the Tale of the Dancing Princesses. As a kid I never even knew how famous some of the performers were, and there were others who were Fairy Tale Theatre regulars who I would recognize to this day. Funny, magical entertainment for kids and adults.
  • "The Tale of the Frog Prince" starring Robin Williams, Teri Garr, and Michael Richards (directed by Eric Idle of Monty Python fame), is hands-down the best of the series, with its sharp humor and Maxfield Parrish backgrounds. "Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp" starring James Earl Jones, Robert Carradine, Valerie Bertinelli, and Leonard Nimoy (directed by Tim Burton) is great as well. Most public libraries have the entire series.
  • Cinderella was SO the best in the series. Matthew Broderick and Jennifer Beals...how can you go wrong? I was enchanted by this as a wee lass. Yes, Pinocchio starring Pee-Wee Herman was great too, and I loved Snow White, but Cinderella was and always will be my favorite Faerie Tale.
  • It is very easy to see why 'Faerie Tale Theatre' is so highly regarded by many people. It is not a perfect series, with some imperfections here and there in individual episodes, but there is a huge amount to like and it is difficult not to get any enjoyment out of them.

    As seen in all my reviews of the individual episodes, which goes into a good amount of detail as what worked in the episode and what didn't quite. Many of their adaptations of various well-known and well-loved fairy tales are charming, clever and sometimes funny, a few even emotionally moving. 'Faerie Tale Theatre' puts its own magical spin (whether playing for laughs or straight) on the best of the episodes while still capturing the essence of the stories (much more faithful than anything by Disney, speaking as a fan), while also giving further enjoyment in seeing talented performers in early roles or in roles that are departures from their usual roles.

    Favourite episodes of 'Faerie Tale Theatre' are-: "Hansel and Gretel", "The Boy Who Left Home to Find Out About the Shivers", "The Princess and the Pea", "The Three Little Pigs", "The Snow Queen", "Rumpelstiltskin", "The Pied Piper of Hamelin", "Little Red Riding Hood", "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs", "The Dancing Princesses" and "Cinderella".

    Least favourite episodes, while still not bad at all are "Rip Van Winkle" (the worst looking and scripted of the series) and "The Princess Who Had Never Laughed". Other lesser episodes, though there is not a misfire in the whole of 'Faerie Tale Theatre', are-: "Puss in Boots", "Pinocchio", "Beauty and the Beast", "The Nightingale" and "Jack and the Beanstalk".

    Visually, mostly 'Faerie Tale Theatre' does well with its low budget. Episodes that actually look good are in particular "The Snow Queen", "Hansel and Gretel", "Little Red Riding Hood", "The Pied Piper of Hamelin" and "Cinderella". There are a few episodes that don't fare so well, particularly "Rip Van Winkle", the toads in "Thumbelina", the effects in "The Little Mermaid", the ghoulish make-up in "The Nightingale" and the cow and the giant in "Jack and the Beanstalk".

    Throughout the whole series the music is great, apart from the random and misplaced mole's song in "Thumbelina". Shelley Duval does wonders with the introductions and proves that she wasn't that bad an actress, especially in "Rumpelstiltskin".

    Really enjoyed the writing on the most part, with the few exceptions being "Rip Van Winkle" and some overdone innuendo in "Sleeping Beauty". Some episodes are very funny, especially "The Three Little Pigs", "The Frog Prince", "Goldilocks and the Three Bears", "The Emperor's New Clothes" and "Little Red Riding Hood", while there are darker toned ones like "The Snow Queen", "Snow White", "The Pied Piper of Hamelin" and "The Boy Who Left Home to Find Out About the Shivers" as well as some poignant ones like "The Snow Queen" and "The Little Mermaid".

    Most of the acting is great. Highlights are Robin Williams, Herve Villechaize, Malcolm McDowell, Burgess Meredith, Klaus Kinski, Vanessa Redgrave, Vincent Price, Christopher Lee, James Earl Jones, Leonard Nimoy, Jean Stapleton, Joan Collins, Jeff Goldblum, Lesley Ann Warren and Lee Remick.

    A few didn't work so well for me. They were Paul Reubens, Elliot Gould, Brock Peters, Matthew Broderick, Robert Carradine, Edward James Olmos and the waste of Anjelica Huston in "Beauty and the Beast".

    Check out the greatest moments/reunion episode "Grimm Party". That is entertaining and has a nice invented story.

    Overall, flawed but still timeless. 8/10 Bethany Cox
  • This is a nice TV-series a classic fairy tale representing each episode, narrated by Shelley Duvall. The stories were adapted very well and features some very luscious castle and forest settings, colorful costumes and spot-on acting.

    Some of the tales featured includes Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Hanzel and Gretel, Aladdin and his Wonderful Lamp, Jack and the Beanstalk, The Dancing Princesses and Beauty and the Beast. Some notable actors and actresses that appear include Christopher Reeve, Vanessa Redgrave, Bernadette Peters, Susan Sarandon, Paul Reubens, Robin Williams and Jennifer Beals.

    It's a TV series that is full of adventure, magic and humor - a wonderful representation of the classic fairy tales and is perfect for both adults and children.

    Grade A
  • As a child I recorded every Fairie Tale Theatre I could off of PBS. I still have the collection of them and my favorite of all of them is The Frog Prince. Robin Williams is probably the reason why. Even though the background is not at all realistic and it seems almost like watching a play, the acting is wonderful and very funny. If you have a chance, this little film is worth seeing.
  • This series has as much variety in actors and style as it does in the stories presented. I used to watch it all the time when I was a child, and was lucky enough to find many of the episodes on DVD at the local library. It still holds up as a fantastic show.

    Quite a number of the episodes are enjoyable even to the adult, although the show admittedly delves into the cheesy from time to time. (Those who grew up in the 80s will most likely have a laugh-fest with this one.) The special effects, while not always stunning, should also bring back memories.

    And, as has been stated by other viewers, the big-name directors and actors that have appeared on this show are also a factor of interest. (Sleeping Beauty, for instance, has a performance by Christopher Reeve.)
  • Lynde198013 February 2006
    I remember watching Faerie Tale Theatre as a child and in my opinion some of them were awesome and some were OK. I remember my parents renting them for me and my brother and watching them on TV. I watched all of them as a child, but only a few stuck in my mind over the years. My favorites: Rapunzel, Rumplestiltskin, Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel & Gretel, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, The Three Little Pigs, Jack and the Beanstalk & Pinocchio.

    I liked the other tales as well, but we all have our favorites. The actors are amazing. This show came out when I was two years old and I didn't know who any of these actors were. I just loved watching them. Looking back, all of the stars were very well known at that time and today, some are still famous, while others sadly died but are legends we will never forget.

    I have to admit that the special effects and props are a little cheesy. They didn't have the special effects and technology back in the early 80's that we have today but everyone involved in this classic series did an amazing job making all of the tales come to life. This didn't stop me from enjoying them as a child and now as an adult.

    I was in shock to find out that all twenty six episodes were released in a DVD collectors set last year. I just had to have them for me and for my unborn child due this summer. I am glad that I came across this set. Now I can enjoy them again and I hope my child enjoys them as much as I did one day. If you get a chance and want to get a taste of your childhood, watch them. If not, I think you are missing out. Enjoy!!
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