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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Hugo (2011)

A young orphan boy (Asa Butterfield) living in a Paris train station, where he takes care of the clocks, spends his spare time repairing an automaton in the hope it will give him a clue to his destiny. But it opens the door to a future he could never have imagined. This utterly magical film, shot in 3D by Martin Scorsese (his first film in the format), is surely a must for every lover of cinema. Scorsese's passion for film (and film preservation) is well known and the film is infused with that passion. I love the symmetry of a film about the inception of cinema and its crude beginnings coming full circle and shot in razor sharp 3D and directional stereophonic sound. Here, Scorsese pays homage to the days of early film from the Lumiere brothers to Harold Lloyd and you can feel his affection for cinema and, indeed, the magic that early film audiences must have felt upon encountering movies for the first time. Kudos to Dante Ferretti's stunning train station set and Robert Richardson (INGLORIOUS BASTERDS) elegant cinematography. The score is by Howard Shore. The fine cast includes Ben Kingsley as George Melies, Sacha Baron Cohen, Chloe Grace Moretz, Christopher Lee, Jude Law, Ray Winstone, Emily Mortimer, Frances De La Tour and Helen McCrory.

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