For this month’s next review for Genre Grandeur – Dark Comedies, here’s a review of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004) by Kim of Tranquil Dreams
Thanks again to Reut of Sweet Archive. for choosing this month’s genre.
Next month’s Genre has been chosen by Steven of Past Present Future TV and Film We will be reviewing our favorite B&W films prior to 1990. Please get me your submissions by the 25th of August by sending them to firstname.lastname@example.org Try to think out of the box! Great choice Steven!
Let’s see what Kim thought of this movie:
Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004)
Director: Brad Silberling
Cast: Jim Carrey, Jude Law, Emily Browning, Liam Aiken, Kara Hoffman, Timothy Spall, Catherine O’Hara, Billy Connolly, Meryl Streep
The Baudelaires are a wealthy family. The parents were frequently away but the Baudelaire children all had their abilities. The eldest daughter, Violet is an inventor just by tying up her hair, she’s ready to work make up something practical and useful. Her brother, Klaus, is a reader. He reads all the books in their library and can remember every single one. While their youngest sister is still a baby and even she has an extraordinary ability. She’s a biter and her sharp teeth can bite through anything. However, when their house catches fire for unknown reasons, they become the Baudelaire orphans and gets passed to their “closest” relative Count Olaf who very obviously will do anything to inherit their fortune. And they will do anything to get away from him and stop him from doing that.
Right from the start, Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events lets us know that we’re in for a journey of bad things that happen to the Baudelaires narrated by Lemony Snicket, as the name says. From her parents dying to getting moved from one crazy relative to another plus getting hunted down by Count Olaf in his various disguises in the hopes to get them back and eventually inherit Violet’s fortune. The movie opens with a cute cartoon called The Littlest Elf but cuts off halfway to a dark scene. The movie in general is very darkly toned and the atmosphere uses very colorless palette. All the characters are a little bizarre but in a way, some of the metaphors and dialogue will make you laugh despite the situation the Baudelaires are in.
The Baudelaires and especially Count Olaf has a dry humor. Count Olaf is definitely the character that makes you laugh even when he is being extremely evil because of his expressions and the emotionless, almost inhuman way he is to the situation. For example, treating life like its a theatre piece even in regards to the death of the parents of the Baudelaires. We also have the piece of Meryl Streep in the role of Aunt Josephine that has all these irrational fears.
This dark comedy looks like its for children and its a kids tale but it deals not with happy little elves and colorful positive scenes but takes them into the world of Lemony Snicket’s recount of a story of children dealing with death and greed and not knowing where they belonged. Its dark and gloomy even if it makes fun of it sometimes with absolute out of the world craziness that just makes you laugh a little. Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events is a great entertaining even when tackling some dark material that we usually associate with a movie centred around children and adapted from children’s book series.