D: Martin Scorsese
Paramount (Graham King, Martin Scorsese, Timothy Headington & Johnny Depp)
US 2011
126 mins


W: John Logan [based on the book "The Invention Of Hugo Cabret" by Brian Selznick]
DP: Robert Richardson
Ed: Thelma Schoonmaker
Mus: Howard Shore
PD: Dante Ferretti
Cos: Sandy Powell

Asa Butterfield (Hugo Cabret), Ben Kingsley (Georges Méliès), Sacha Baron Cohen (Inspector Gustave Dasté), Chloë Grace Moretz (Isabelle), Emily Mortimer (Lisette), Jude Law (Mr. Cabret)

A curious choice for director Martin Scorsese, a 3D children's movie set mostly inside a Parisian train station where a young homeless boy scuttles behind clock faces and along the gangways to remain unseen, forming a friendship with a young girl and trying to get his father's timepiece back from a grumpy watchmaker.
Whilst the film is visually amazing and a genuine work of cinematic craft, it takes a long time to get where it's going and ends up becoming a tribute to early filmmaker and photographic effects pioneer Georgés Melies.
Supposedly based on a children's book, the content seems a little too adult for youngsters who will hardly care who Melies was and what he did for the advancement of cinema. In fact, most adults will barely care and it's not as though they'll seek out a copy of "La Voyage Dan La Lune" or any of Melies' other works after watching.
Still, it's a very beautifully made film and captures the essence of early filmmaking as well as encapsulating the feel of a movie which the entire family will snuggle up to watch around Christmastime.
It's nowhere near the best work which Scorsese has brought to screen and the fact that this won 5 Oscars seemed incredibly generous.
Very well made, but certainly more appreciated by critics rather than audiences, proved by a disappointing return on box office receipts.

Asa Butterfield & Chloë Grace Moretz Hugo
Asa Butterfield & Chloë Grace Moretz Hugo