Thursday, December 1, 2011


Director: Martin Scorsese
Writers: John Logan (screenplay), Brian Selznick (book)


Ben Kingsley ... Georges Méliès
Sacha Baron Cohen ... Station Inspector
Asa Butterfield ... Hugo Cabret
Chloë Grace Moretz ... Isabelle
Ray Winstone ... Uncle Claude
Emily Mortimer ... Lisette
Christopher Lee ... Monsieur Labisse
Helen McCrory ... Mama Jeanne
Michael Stuhlbarg ... Rene Tabard
Frances de la Tour ... Madame Emilie
Richard Griffiths ... Monsieur Frick
Jude Law ... Hugo's Father

Hugo Cabret's twelve when he loses his father to a tragic fire. His Uncle Claude takes him in. The only memento Hugo brings from his past is an automaton, a small metal man that he and his father have been working on to restore.

Hugo's new home is the Paris railway station. It's his Uncle Claude's job to keep the clocks wound and running. When Claude doesn't show up one day, Hugo continues the work. Unfortunately, he doesn't get Claude's pay and resorts to stealing food and parts he needs to repair the automaton.

That's when he's caught and comes to the attention of both the station guard and, Georges, the owner of the toy shop. Georges "hires" Hugo to repair the toys to repay him for the parts he's stolen.

When Hugo meets Lisette, the god-daughter of Georges, he discovers a heart-shaped key around her neck and the possibility to learning the mystery of the metal man he's been trying to restore.

Hugo isn't a film for the impatient or people seeking a warm family drama. Life for an orphan on his own in 1930's Paris isn't easy and Hugo is one of the lucky ones having a home among the clocks in the train station. The mystery of the automaton is fascinating and magical and was enjoyable for me, but overall not a film I would see again or purchase. I would recommend it to Francophiles and those with a fascination for all things very Parisian and arty.


  1. Sounds like it would appeal to fans of Steampunk.

  2. Becky, I love that you do movie reviews as well as book reviews. I'm gonna copy you on that. I saw HUGO also. My feeling was similar. I thought the first have was kinda slow. But around midpoint when we learn who the filmmaker is -- my interest just increased till the end. Some great visuals. My favorite films lately: 50/50, My Life with Marilyn. Looking forward to seeing The Artist.