Directed by: Martin Scorsese
Written by: John Logan
Set in 1930s Paris, an orphan who lives in the walls of a train station is wrapped up in a mystery involving his late father and an automaton.
Martin Scorsese is a genius behind the camera. Hugo is unlike any other film Scorsese has ever made, but might be the closest film to his life. I mean it must have been so great for him to make a film about one of the fathers of narrative cinema. Scorsese’s Hugo is a homage to the silent cinema, specifically the films Georges Melies created and the overall backstory and the main points made about Georges Melies’ life are accurate. I am currently taking a Silent Cinema class and Hugo was relevant to what I am learning, which made it that much more enjoyable.
I think what will surprise many people is that Hugo is not a kids movie. It is family friendly, but the film gave something a lot deeper then a family friendly children's movie. Not only is the film heart warming, but the visuals are spectacular. Right from the very opening sequence I was entranced. The way he dissolved clockwork into the city of Paris was unbelievable.
As much as this was a film about a young orphan who lives in a train station, it is very much about Melies and his early cinema which was lost. Scorsese uses vintage clips of Melies cinema and re-imagines his work, doing recreations. He also used 3D to show them in a way that Melies could never do or dream of, but I am sure if Melies was still alive he would be simply amazed. Ben Kingsley played Melies and put on a spectacular performance.
As for the young ones in this film, Asa Butterfield (what a name) and Chloe Moretz were both fantastic. At some points I couldn’t believe that the two of them were just children because they were making such powerful performances. Asa Butterfield was just cast as the lead in the upcoming Enders Game project and I can’t wait to see him in it. As for Chloe Moretz, I love everything she has been in up to date, Kick Ass, 500 Days of Summer, her cameo in 30 Rock, and now Hugo can be added to this list. Both of these actors have great futures ahead of them.
This film really hits a soft spot, and pulls at the heart cords, but Sasha Baron Cohen was an added pleasure in this film. Always coming in at the right moment to give you that comic relief.
There is not too much to say about what was wrong with this film. The only thing that felt off was that Hugo’s father’s death affected his life so greatly and the resolution of the film did not seem fitting to his life altering experiences. Either way it was barely noticeable and did not bother me. This was a wonderful film to watch and hopefully will spark a love for film into the younger audience, to join the ranks of cinema lovers like me and so many others.
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