Hugo (2011): Asa Butterfield, Chloe Grace Moretz, Christopher Lee, Ben Kingsley, Sacha Baron Cohen, Jude Law


Hugo is an enthralling tale about an orphan, Hugo, Butterfield, his late father, Law, and a mysterious broken automaton holding the answer to the past and unbeknownst to him the future. Hugo a young orphan fixes the clocks and gadgets in a Paris train station during the 1930's.  The various clocks keeping time in the train station provide the perfect windows to watch the bustling station activity, creating a story within a story as the viewer follows the Station Instructor, Cohen, chasing after orphans, or the woman sipping espresso with an unfriendly dog.  Yet, the main interaction in the film is between a robot automaton, a cranky toy shop owner, George, Kingsley, and Isabelle, Moretz, who befriends lonely Hugo.  As the story unfolds, Hugo states that "movies are the projection of dreams" setting the stage to marvel at the historical film making by George Melies (1861-1938) French Illusionist & Filmmaker, while solving the puzzle of the automaton and ultimately "fixing" the emptiness of the core players.  His skills with tools and making the clocks work parallels the creative efforts in films where every frame is strategically placed culminating in a timeless  "working" masterpiece.   Hugo's strong will and stubbornness pushes him to seek the truth and in finding the truth fixes himself and others.  The cinematography, acting, script, visual effects and storyline is marvelously brilliant.

Hugo is a warm and well told story sending a message to take notice of others and to comprehend the thin and frail thread that binds humanity.   A salute to film making, to the well told story and acting with the reminder not to stop, nor settle, and instead run forward embracing life with adventure and purpose.   The movie grips the audience from beginning to end with laughter, tears, and awe. Cohen is funny yet seriously touching and Butterfield is captivating as Hugo.  Johnny Depp produced the movie and Martin Scorsese, directed the film.  Both are strategically placed in Hugo for a brief moment. This is one film that will not be forgotten.  Don't miss Hugo in 3D!

Hugo is nominated for 11 Oscars including Best Picture 2011.   Prediction - will take the Best Picture Oscar.

Side note: After seeing the film - google George Melies and Martin Scorsese whose childhood was spent looking through windows.

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