6.8/10
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A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004)

When a massive fire kills their parents, three children are delivered to the custody of cousin and stage actor Count Olaf, who is secretly plotting to steal their parents' vast fortune.

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(screenplay), (books) (as Lemony Snicket)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 25 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Lemony Snicket (voice)
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Bald Man (as Luis Guzman)
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Storyline

Three children - Violet, Klaus and Sunny Baudelaire - are left orphaned when their house burns down, with their parents in it, in mysterious circumstances. They are left in the custody of a distant relative, Count Olaf (played by Jim Carrey). It is soon apparent that Count Olaf only cares about the children for their large inheritance. Written by grantss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

At last a holiday movie without all that pesky hope and joy. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements, scary situations and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

17 December 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Series of Unfortunate Events  »

Box Office

Budget:

$140,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£2,210,979 (UK) (17 December 2004)

Gross:

$118,627,117 (USA) (22 April 2005)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Two weeks before the end of shooting, DP Emmanuel Lubezki had to leave due to work commitments for the upcoming movie The New World (2005). 'Robert Yeoman' was brought in for a shot in the last half of the third act (The Wide Window). Yeoman was given a special thanks in the credits. See more »

Goofs

When 'The Incredibly Deadly Viper' gives the children a fright, we see a shot from the inside of the cage looking out. In this shot you can see the door to the cage has no handle on the inside. In the next scene we see the door to the cage being opened from the inside. How can this be if there is no handle on the inside? See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Lemony Snicket: [the Littlest Elf has just come to an abrupt halt] I'm sorry to say that this is not the movie you will be watching. The movie you are about to see is extremely unpleasant. If you wish to see a film about a happy little elf, I'm sure there is still plenty of seating in theatre number two. However, if you like stories about clever and reasonably attractive orphans, suspicious fires, carnivorous leeches, Italian food and secret organizations, then stay, as I retrace each and every one...
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Crazy Credits

The film begins as if it is a stop-motion animated film which calls itself "The Littlest Elf". After thirty seconds of action, everything stops, the set goes dark, and Lemony Snicket's voice-over sounds, saying that unfortunately, this isn't the film you are about to see. If you want to turn away from this movie and watch a film about a happy little elf, there's going to be a showing playing in theater two. If you're into seeing movies with an unhappy ending, attractive children, and terrifying people, with suspicious fires, secret organizations and Italian food, then you're in the right show. "The Littlest Elf" is the only title shown onscreen during the opening credits. As Snicket is doing his voiceover, the scene changes to a person walking through a foggy graveyard. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Parks and Recreation: Are You Better Off? (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Bonnie George Campbell
(uncredited)
Traditional
Performed by Billy Connolly
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
If you've seen the movie, you don't know what the books are like
24 December 2004 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

The movie was decent. I enjoyed it, certainly. Technically it was outstanding. Casting was good, sets were outstanding, costumes were very nice.

As an adaptation of the books, however, this was horrendous. It was as if the writer had torn a quarter of the pages from the first three books, a few pages from books 4-9, and pasted them together in a random fashion to try and create a cohesive movie. Now, had I not read the books, I would have enjoyed this movie very much, so I have to give that to them, but as a fan, it was just a slap in the face.

If you've read the books, don't see the movie, it will just enrage you. If you haven't, see the movie. It'll be very enjoyable. If, however, you decide to read the books afterwards, be aware that they are far darker than the movie shows, and the mystery is certainly deeper than some magnifying glass in Count Olaf's house. Do not think of them as kid stuff.

7.5/10 for the movie, 2/10 for the adaptation.


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