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Saturday, December 3, 2011


If you're going to see this in 3D (which is its main, and probably only,  real selling point), be sure to get to the theater early enough to sit about half way up, middle of the row, so  you are looking directly at the screen.   Alas, I was unable to take this excellent advice (courtesy of Guruka Singh) and found myself as a latecomer, forced to sit quite close to the screen.  So, already, I've got a headache.   Granted, I suppose, the camera work by the renowned Director, Martin Scorsese, seemed as if it were quite excellent (hard for me to really tell), with lots of winding staircase scenes and running through the streets of London, and peeking out through the huge clock, inside of which is Hugo's bed, his home, and where he daily winds the clock to keep it running.  My favorite actors in this are: handsome Sacha Baron Cohen who plays the "Station Inspector" from whom Hugo is always running (in order not to be caught and sent to an orphanage) and the always superb Ben Kingley as "Georges Melies" the famous 'inventor' of motion pictures.  There's also a minor plot device in which Emily Mortimer (another excellent actor) is the flower girl, "Lisette" for whom the "Station Inspector" has a thing.  Oh, and yes, there's another small romance brewing between a much older couple which seems hopeless because the lady's dog keeps biting the would-be suitor.   If only the lead ("Hugo" - in case you've forgotten) had more than one rather boring expression throughout the picture.  Sorry, Asa Butterfield, it's probably not your fault; the Director was probably much too busy workiing with the 3D phenomenon (phooey, I say!)   Chloe Grace Moretz, is a charming young actor. As "Isabelle," she tries to help "Hugo."  Meanwhile, back to the story, which unfolds so slowly I wish I'd gotten the large size popcorn, so I'd have something substantial on which to gnash my teeth:   Hugo's father, now deceased (well played by Jude Law) only shows up briefly to establish that he was working in a museum (?) where he found an old broken Robot (Automaton), which he is trying to restore. He has left Hugo with a book listing parts needed, which Hugo steals (and gets caught stealing by the shop owner) and loses the book.   Anyway,  movie buffs and historians may find the history (actually interesting, and kind of fun)  of how movies were first "discovered" and created by Melies, worth the effort to sit through "HUGO."   This review is perhaps  unfairly negative, due to  the factors first mentioned.  Mea Culpa

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