The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar - Wes Anderson, Roald Dahl, Cumberbatch, Netflix

Two Wes Anderson movies in one year? It’s a whimsical feast!

Looks great! Just to set expectations, this is a 40-minute short film.

That’s fantastic. As a lover of short stories, I would love to see more short-ish (40-60 minute) films, which the streaming era should make more viable. That’s plenty of time to explore One Good Idea, without much fluff, and you can also plan for a part two or three if the subject allows for it.

This is minor Dahl, and minor Anderson. Though it is a great deal of fun to see so many very talented people put so much effort into such a trifle. Worth watching just for some of the details, like Ben Kingsley’s facial expression as the casino dealer.

I read the short story years ago, and had forgotten how it turned out. Watching this, it’s a bit of an odd one to use to kick off a Dahl anthology that will be introducing his “adult” stories to a modern audience (there are 3 more episodes coming in the next week, each based on a different Dahl story and directed by Anderson.) These stories generally were thrillers with dark or ironic twist endings - Twilight Zone stories, if you will. (“Lamb to the Slaughter” became a very famous episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents.) Here the ironic twist at the end is that there’s no ironic twist at the end: it’s Dahl subverting his own tendencies.