I was in my living room one day and I saw a book about the happy pony. I was looking at the cover of this book. It was just so saccharine that I was just amazed at it. I ask my daughter who loves horses about the book if she was reading it. She told me no. I found out the cover was a farse. The book was "A Series Of Unfortunate Events". I thought it was a funny joke. The cover was two sided. The regular cover could be reverse to the "Happy Pony Farm" if some adult was going to direct that the child should read something a little more happy.
Today we took the whole family to the movie. It was quite funny. The narrator, author, of the story encouraged everyone to leave the theater several times. Seriously! I stayed.
The themes are dark and yet over the top funny. The plot is fairly well developed. The movie, I am told, takes liberties with the original for the sake of brevity. The movie combines several of the books. The main idea is that when you are in trouble, use your grit and talents to get you out of the tight spot in which you find yourself. (Of course, the grace of God is not mentioned as a means of deleiverance.) Self-reliance and ingenuity are the values lifted up. These are values that I want my children to have, given a back drop of the grace of God.
Perhaps you may find the message in a cloke of darkness. I would say that the Puddleglum in C.S. Lewis book, The Silver Chair, may have a better view of the world than optimists who always try to make the whole world seem when it is not. Also, there is something to be said for the Protestant artist Albert Durer. Some of his gruesome views of the spirit world help us to put in perspective that we have a truely evil enemy whom we battle. So just because it is dark does not mean we should avoid it, however, if your child is subject to nightmares, you should probably not allow them to see it.
The baby "Sunny" was the best actor. I don't know how they got her to do her part. It was great. The other children were great too. Jim Carrey is over the top. He never convinces me he has an evil heart. Merrill Streep is excellent of course. But I have a hard time seeing her as ditsy.
Good movie but beware of the dark themes if your children or you are sensitive to that type of thing.