Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events

Critics Consensus

Although it softens the nasty edges of its source material, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events is a gothic visual treat, and it features a hilariously manic turn from Jim Carrey as the evil Count Olaf.



Total Count: 162


Audience Score

User Ratings: 485,158
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Movie Info

The best-selling series of subversive children's books from author Lemony Snicket (aka Daniel Handler) come to the screen in this black comedy for the whole family (and how often do you get to see one of those?). The Baudelaire siblings -- gadget freak Violet (Emily Browning), bookworm Klaus (Liam Aiken), and baby Sunny (Kara Hoffman and Shelby Hoffman) -- were living a fairy-tale existence with their parents until they died in a fire that destroyed the family home. With few close relatives and a large fortune the children won't inherit until they reach adulthood, the Baudelaire children are left in the care of the peculiar Count Olaf (Jim Carrey), an out-of-work actor who would love nothing more than to get his hands on the kids' money. It doesn't take long for the children to figure out that Count Olaf is up to no good, and they try to steer clear of his various murderous schemes with the help of wildly paranoid Aunt Josephine (Meryl Streep) and snake-fancying Uncle Monty (Billy Connolly). Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events also features Catherine O'Hara, Timothy Spall, Cedric the Entertainer, and Luis Guzman; Jude Law narrates in the guise of author Snicket. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi


Jim Carrey
as Count Olaf
Meryl Streep
as Aunt Josephine
Emily Browning
as Violet Baudelaire
Liam Aiken
as Klaus Baudelaire
Kara Hoffman
as Sunny Baudelaire
Shelby Hoffman
as Sunny Baudelaire
Billy Connolly
as Uncle Monty
Catherine O'Hara
as Justice Strauss
Jamie Harris
as Hook-Handed Henchman
Craig Ferguson
as Person of Indeterminate Gender
Luis Guzman
as Bald Henchman
Jude Law
as Lemony Snicket
Jennifer Coolidge
as White Faced Woman No. 1
Jane Adams (II)
as White Faced Woman No. 2
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Critic Reviews for Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events

All Critics (162) | Top Critics (39) | Fresh (116) | Rotten (46)

Audience Reviews for Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events

  • Jun 14, 2019
    A Series of Unfortunate Events highlights the bizarre lore of Lemony Snicket's encapsulating vision by utilizing a plethora of stars including Meryl Streep and ever-iconic, multi-layered Jim Carrey. The charming adolescent/toddler trio and perilous, yet quirky plot is just enough satisfaction and entertainment to wonder what could have been for this potentially-developing franchise. 3.75/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer
  • Nov 19, 2016
    I decided to see this since Netflix is turning it into a TV series next year. A great performance from Jim Carrey and an engaging plot, set up for sequels that did not happen, doesn't do the book series justice. Very entertaining and funny.
    Ian W Super Reviewer
  • Aug 04, 2013
    Nowhere near the brilliance of Lemony Snicket's series, the film is a disappointment as far as adaptations go. It is aesthetically pleasing, however, with wonderful visuals. While there is some humor, most of the film is quite lifeless with wooden acting. If only the makers had spent as much time on the script as they did on the aesthetics, the film may feel a little less empty than it does. Ultimately, the film is pretty to look at, but nothing more. Its main failure not only comes from awkward pacing and a bland script, but an attempt to mix in secrets revealed in the last books of the series with the first three installations. Frankly, it doesn't work.
    Matthew Samuel M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 05, 2012
    Was quite different to the books, but offered some new elements and yet worked. The costumes were fantastic, acting was charming. It only the film can receive a Harry Potter treatment then it would be much better.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer

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