6.8/10
163,279
601 user 186 critic

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.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (books) (as Lemony Snicket)
Reviews
Popularity
43 ( 260)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Won 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 25 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Adventure | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

After the loss of their parents in a mysterious fire, the three Baudelaire children face trials and tribulations attempting to uncover dark family secrets.

Stars: Neil Patrick Harris, Patrick Warburton, Malina Weissman
Nanny McPhee (2005)
Comedy | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A governess uses magic to rein in the behavior of seven ne'er-do-well children in her charge.

Director: Kirk Jones
Stars: Emma Thompson, Colin Firth, Angela Lansbury
Comedy | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

On the outskirts of Whoville, there lives a green, revenge-seeking Grinch who plans on ruining the Christmas holiday for all of the citizens of the town.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Jim Carrey, Taylor Momsen, Kelley
Adventure | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Upon moving into the run-down Spiderwick Estate with their mother, twin brothers Jared and Simon Grace, along with their sister Mallory, find themselves pulled into an alternate world full of faeries and other creatures.

Director: Mark Waters
Stars: Freddie Highmore, Sarah Bolger, David Strathairn
Adventure | Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A young boy wins a tour through the most magnificent chocolate factory in the world, led by the world's most unusual candy maker.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Freddie Highmore, David Kelly
Adventure | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

In a parallel universe, young Lyra Belacqua journeys to the far North to save her best friend and other kidnapped children from terrible experiments by a mysterious organization.

Director: Chris Weitz
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig, Dakota Blue Richards
Matilda (1996)
Comedy | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Story of a wonderful little girl, who happens to be a genius, and her wonderful teacher vs. the worst parents ever and the worst school principal imaginable.

Director: Danny DeVito
Stars: Danny DeVito, Rhea Perlman, Mara Wilson
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Horton the Elephant struggles to protect a microscopic community from his neighbors who refuse to believe it exists.

Directors: Jimmy Hayward, Steve Martino
Stars: Jim Carrey, Steve Carell, Carol Burnett
Animation | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An animated retelling of Charles Dickens' classic novel about a Victorian-era miser taken on a journey of self-redemption, courtesy of several mysterious Christmas apparitions.

Director: Robert Zemeckis
Stars: Jim Carrey, Gary Oldman, Colin Firth
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Two young brothers are drawn into an intergalactic adventure when their house is hurled through the depths of space by the magical board game they are playing.

Director: Jon Favreau
Stars: Josh Hutcherson, Jonah Bobo, Dax Shepard
Adventure | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A preteen's life turns upside down when he befriends the new girl in school and they imagine a whole new fantasy world to escape reality.

Director: Gabor Csupo
Stars: Josh Hutcherson, AnnaSophia Robb, Zooey Deschanel
Adventure | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Four kids travel through a wardrobe to the land of Narnia and learn of their destiny to free it with the guidance of a mystical lion.

Director: Andrew Adamson
Stars: Tilda Swinton, Georgie Henley, William Moseley
Edit

Cast

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

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:

Mishaps. Mayhem. Misadventures. Oh joy. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

|

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)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In the film, Liam Aiken's character's home burns to the ground. During the premiere, Liam got word that his house was on fire. See more »

Goofs

When Klaus shows the book "Inheritance Law and You" to Violet, he is holding the head of the camel mask. When he holds the book up, the mask is right behind him. 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...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Most of the end credits are composed of cardboard cut outs and Olaf chasing the children. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Benchwarmers (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Loverly Spring
By Thomas Newman and Bill Bernstein
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A frightfully frenetic and beautifully tragic children's film
17 December 2004 | by (WASHINGTON DC) – See all my reviews

First, let it be declared that in the media of movie, it is a downright shock that Nickelodeon's monicker appears in this film. It is by far, the best film they have ever made. Second, it is probably the only movie you will see made for children (supposedly) and containing a claymation elf holding a rifle.

Second, let it be known that this movie is the most visually pleasing children's (live-action) film any of us will see for years. The costume design is amazing, from the strap-laden sunny to the neo-Gothic formality of Violet, and especially in the under-appreciated and subtle '60s formal-casual of Klaus, who looks like a miniature Harold from "Harold and Maude". The sets are equally beautiful, a spree of Burtonesque Gothic-Modern Post-Industrial Asymmetry, from the half formed carnage of The burnt Baudelaire Mansion to the perfectly executed closing credits, animated to perfection. Cinematography also plays an amazing roll on the parts of Violet and Klaus, where ingenious images are used to insert the audience into the minds of the genius Baudelaires.

Last, the performances, only two that everyone has't heard; Jude Law's perfect narration, and The Hoffman Twins astonishing performance as Sunny. Law's performance is so on target that it never occurs that this voice is not the elusive and enigmatic pseudonym himself. He is the perfect compliment to the often exciting or disturbing actions being inflicted upon the accurately charming and intelligent Baudelaires. as for Sunny, they have performed the impossible in giving a perfect performance to an infant from an infant, in both the physical acting and the ingenious form of translation. The sequels are sure to be the greatest of series, even if the events be unfortunate as they have been.

As an artist, this reviewer cannot help but give this movie a 10/10. It is his deep desire that you appreciate it as much as he, if not, well... ... that is rather... ... unfortunate.


124 of 171 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
did count olaf push Aunt Josephine through the the big window? loverboylove
underratede kraniumet
Discuss A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page