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GreenCine Movie Talk
In The Theaters
I just saw it and boy does it...
318

Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events
Topic by: IronS
Posted: December 18, 2004 - 1:09 AM PST
Last Reply: December 23, 2004 - 1:06 PM PST

author topic: Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events
IronS
post #1  on December 18, 2004 - 1:09 AM PST  
It was fun. I enjoyed the look of the film, very richly textured. The end credits, though amusing, were a mite long, but that was to be expected. Captain Sham does sing a sea chantey near the end of the credits if anyone wants to wait long enough.

My boyfriend really enjoyed this film. I, being an avid reader of the books, was a bit more particular. This film covered 3 books: "The Bad Beginning", "The Reptile Room" and "The Wide Window" so some details of the books were lost. The film also deviated from the books somewhat which was interesting (this isn't Harry Potter after all). What was a bit trying for me was the Jim Carrey treatment of Count Olaf. Of course, the only Jim Carrey film I like is Earth Girls Are Easy. Still, while I realize that it's a Nickelodeon Movie and all, Jim Carrey's Count Olaf is a bit too slapsticky for my taste (try listening to Tim Curry's reading of the books for comparison).

Nevertheless, it was quite enjoyable. With Violet as a young, female MacGyver and Klaus as a Tomiko Readman (in terms of voracity in reading) with analytical ability, it was a pretty fun way to spend some time in the theater. I doubt I'd see it again in the theaters but it'd make a good rental when it comes out on DVD. By the way, the website is quite fun, too (don't miss Count Olaf's version of the trailer).
ChiyoDad
post #2  on December 19, 2004 - 10:28 PM PST  
We thought it was a good albeit very abbreviated adaptation of the first three books. As expected, the screenplay writers made changes to accelerate the pace (like in proving that the snake wasn't of the killing kind). Compared to the "Harry Potter" adaptations, we thought that the writers took more liberties with ASOUE.

Chiyo-chan thought the actor selected for Klaus didn't fit the role but she understood the probable need for a more appealing face for a general audience. I think Violet was cast well.

Jim Carrey was more appealing to me when he was acting dark and threatening. When assumed one of his "comical" characters, I was reminded too much of his skits in "In Living Color". I'd be a little hard-pressed to think of another actor that might have been able to do Count Olaf; but I can't help but feel that Carrey could have played him a little better.
hamano
post #3  on December 20, 2004 - 7:02 AM PST  
Apparently the author of the book (he's all over the talk shows right now, but for some reason his name still escapes me... something Handler?) originally thought Alan Rickman would be perfect for Olaf. When the books first became popular he's gone on record saying his nightmare was that they'd cast someone like Jim Carrey.... Well, now that he's wiser (and richer) he thinks Jim Carrey is perfect and Rickman was committed to the Harry Potter films anyway.... Watching "House" on FOX now I think Hugh Laurie would have been good for Olaf... After The Grinch and Olaf, what other kid lit villains can Carrey play?

I managed to get out of seeing this film this weekend. Mao-chan went with her best friend and her best friend's Mom, god bless them! That girl they cast as Violet has disturbingly sexy pouty lips, so I was happy to get out with a "Daddy will just have to see it when it comes out on video!"

Sigh.... my daughter is seeing films with her friends now. How long before she starts going to films with boys? I told myself "when she's a black belt" but now she only has two more levels of green and a couple of levels of brown in her way. Apparently it takes more than a year to work your way through a brown belt, so hopefully I still have a bit more breathing room....

jross3
post #4  on December 20, 2004 - 9:30 AM PST  
That sounds like a very good standard for dating age. If that comes too soon, you can always say, "When she's a certified self-defense specialist" or "When she's old enough to care for me in my dottage".

My nephew seems to be intent on seeing this movie, and now he's here visiting the family for Christmas - that means that, more likely than not, we'll all be going to see it together.
He's gonna be getting the first book in the series for Christmas. I'm not too sure about it, but since he's only just starting to read it might be a bit much for him, but maybe this will be the push he needs to get into reading (and right now he needs a BIG push). Hopefully he'll like the movie, and that will carry over to the book on a subconscious level.
ChiyoDad
post #5  on December 20, 2004 - 11:22 AM PST  
> On December 20, 2004 - 7:02 AM PST hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> I managed to get out of seeing this film this weekend. Mao-chan went with her best friend and her best friend's Mom, god bless them! That girl they cast as Violet has disturbingly sexy pouty lips, so I was happy to get out with a "Daddy will just have to see it when it comes out on video!"
> ---------------------------------


Angelina Jolie??!!

> ---------------------------------
> Sigh.... my daughter is seeing films with her friends now. How long before she starts going to films with boys? I told myself "when she's a black belt" but now she only has two more levels of green and a couple of levels of brown in her way.
> ---------------------------------

I don't think it takes a shodan to learn a hard, swift kick to the nuts. (Shudder!)


Back on topic, I'm wondering if the movie will have enough box-office staying power. It finished first for this weekend but the theater wasn't packed when we went in for the 2:20pm Saturday showing. Of course, it was the last weekend for holiday shopping and the nervous retailers seemed to be discounting and advertising heavily.
IronS
post #6  on December 20, 2004 - 11:32 AM PST  
> Chiyo-chan thought the actor selected for Klaus didn't fit the role but she understood the probable need for a more appealing face for a general audience. I think Violet was cast well.
>

My issue with Liam Aiken as Klaus is that he's as tall as Emily Browning (Violet). Klaus should be shorter since he's only 12 or so. However, I'm sure having both kids be about the same height makes lighting the scene easier and I'm willing to overlook Klaus' lack of glasses, too.

> When assumed one of his "comical" characters, I was reminded too much of his skits in "In Living Color".
>

So I'm not the only one who thought of Fire Marshall Bill? Okay, I thought he was amusing in The Mask but pushing it as The Grinch and kind of overdone as Count Olaf. My boyfriend likes Jim Carrey so he thought the movie was great.

> the author of the book (he's all over the talk shows right now, but for some reason his name still escapes me... something Handler?)
>

Daniel Handler. He reads at least one of his books on tape but his version lacks the menace of Tim Curry's.

> That girl they cast as Violet has disturbingly sexy pouty lips,
>

In the books, Violet is supposed to be pretty, but not that pretty, I think.

> Sigh.... my daughter is seeing films with her friends now. How long before she starts going to films with boys?
>

I hope they have better taste in films than the ones I knew ("The Entity" indeed).

> He's gonna be getting the first book in the series for Christmas. I'm not too sure about it, but since he's only just starting to read it might be a bit much for him, but maybe this will be the push he needs to get into reading (and right now he needs a BIG push).
>

The books' schtick is that they repeated warn the reader not to read it. Also, some big words are used but pains are taken to define them in a fun way.
ChiyoDad
post #7  on December 20, 2004 - 11:45 AM PST  
> On December 20, 2004 - 9:30 AM PST jross3 wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> He's gonna be getting the first book in the series for Christmas. I'm not too sure about it, but since he's only just starting to read it might be a bit much for him, but maybe this will be the push he needs to get into reading (and right now he needs a BIG push).
> ---------------------------------

If he gets hooked and you'd like to be generous without thinning out your wallet, Scholastic Books now has the paperback editions of books 1-10 out. You can buy these through your local elementary school or on eBay. Chiyo-chan has read 9 of them and I bought her all 10 for her library. Not sure when the 11th book will appear in paperback.

Just an aside on books, I noticed that Costco is now carrying 3-packs of manga for about $13. Not a bad price. Chiyo-chan is getting a 3-pack of Tokyo Mew Mew to try out for Xmas.
AFleming
post #8  on December 20, 2004 - 12:37 PM PST  
> On December 20, 2004 - 9:30 AM PST jross3 wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> My nephew seems to be intent on seeing this movie, and now he's here visiting the family for Christmas - that means that, more likely than not, we'll all be going to see it together.
> He's gonna be getting the first book in the series for Christmas. I'm not too sure about it, but since he's only just starting to read it might be a bit much for him, but maybe this will be the push he needs to get into reading (and right now he needs a BIG push). Hopefully he'll like the movie, and that will carry over to the book on a subconscious level.
> ---------------------------------

My daughter and I have been reading these books together. She's 6 and sorta in the first grade (actually she's in the second grade in a supposedly mixed grade class- her and two other first graders- but they do all the same work as the second graders, so I wonder if spending next year in the second grade again won't be similar, interest-wise, to failing a year?) Anywhoo.... she can pretty much read these books herself and only needs a little help from me on the more complex words. I'd say they are written on a second or third grade level.

We saw the movie yesterday. They changed the story around a little and left a lot out. Also, and I guess what bothered me most was that they made it way too comedic. I really dislike Jim Carrey's "funny" movies. It wasn't that bad for a kids movie, but nothing special. I also thought that Liam Aiken didn't really fit Klaus very well. And why couldn't they have put glasses on him? But he WAS really adorable and definitely the next pre-pube heart-throb. I actually found myself wondering why these kids didn't get cast in Harry Potter, their acting was SO much better.
IronS
post #9  on December 20, 2004 - 12:53 PM PST  
> I actually found myself wondering why these kids didn't get cast in Harry Potter, their acting was SO much better.
>

They're not British (Liam's American and Emily is Aussie), I guess. Or perhaps they had too much acting experience? :)

Still, I think Emily is a bit of a stretch as Violet already; she's way too pretty for Hermione.
AFleming
post #10  on December 20, 2004 - 2:16 PM PST  
> On December 20, 2004 - 12:53 PM PST IronS wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> > I actually found myself wondering why these kids didn't get cast in Harry Potter, their acting was SO much better.
> >
>
> They're not British (Liam's American and Emily is Aussie), I guess. Or perhaps they had too much acting experience? :)
>
> Still, I think Emily is a bit of a stretch as Violet already; she's way too pretty for Hermione.
> ---------------------------------

According to the children's description in the book they are supposed to be attractive. I can't remember the exact wording. I'll look it up when I get home.
dh22
post #11  on December 21, 2004 - 5:57 AM PST  
> On December 20, 2004 - 7:02 AM PST hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Sigh.... my daughter is seeing films with her friends now. How long before she starts going to films with boys? I told myself "when she's a black belt" ...
> ---------------------------------

What's the point? The black belt is useless if she WANTS the boy to put a move on her.
hamano
post #12  on December 21, 2004 - 7:34 AM PST  
Ah, you guys have it all backwards.... the black belt isn't for kicking guys in the nuts or stuff like that... the black belt confers maturity, confidence and self-discipline... at least that's the theory! Once she's equipped with those, she can do what she wants, and I won't have to worry... at least that's the theory!

It's all theoretical, but she's my first kid, so what else can I do?

Hmm... maybe advanced weapons training, or improvisational killing with everyday objects... she'll turn out like Kirika from NOIR....

Oh, I know, I can build a giant robot to chaperone her dates! Whirrr... detecting... 2nd base action.... activate... particle beam.... whirrrr...
kohnfused1
post #13  on December 21, 2004 - 9:01 AM PST  
> On December 21, 2004 - 7:34 AM PST hamano wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Ah, you guys have it all backwards.... the black belt isn't for kicking guys in the nuts or stuff like that... the black belt confers maturity, confidence and self-discipline... at least that's the theory! Once she's equipped with those, she can do what she wants, and I won't have to worry... at least that's the theory!
>
> It's all theoretical, but she's my first kid, so what else can I do?
>
> Hmm... maybe advanced weapons training, or improvisational killing with everyday objects... she'll turn out like Kirika from NOIR....
>
> Oh, I know, I can build a giant robot to chaperone her dates! Whirrr... detecting... 2nd base action.... activate... particle beam.... whirrrr...
> ---------------------------------

..or, you could just have a giant Totoro look after her. :)
IronS
post #14  on December 23, 2004 - 1:06 PM PST  
> ..or, you could just have a giant Totoro look after her. :)
>

Hm, a G rated chaperone.. that could work!

Perhaps she'll realize that, as cute as they are, most teenage boys are a bunch of insipid losers who won't become interesting until after college or was that just me?

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