November 23, 2011

Hugo- Museum of the Moving Image

 We saw this screening at the Museum of the Moving Image with a book signing by Selznick and then an intro by Selznick and Logan.

Mike: You haven't seen 3D until you've seen Ben Kingsley's nose in 3D. I was kind of bewildered when it was announced that Martin Scorsese would be adapting a children's book for his next film, but after seeing it it became very clear why. It's a love letter to film history, the magic of movies, and preservation. And I thought it was really, really cool.
I had some issues with the film - most notably, the final show-off seemed a bit anti-climactic, a bit of a 'that's it?' Hugo basically does what he's done the entire movie, only he does it again (trying to be vague so as not to spoil it). Also, the revelation of how movie magician Georges Meliès ends up penniless and selling toys and parts in a Paris train station - built up as some grand, mysterious secret - is also pretty underwhelming. 'Really? That's it? That's what this built up to?' These are just quibbles to me, but I couldn't argue with anyone who'd consider these to be major story/script issues.
But looking beyond that, Hugo is beautiful, fun, and magical. It's also some of the prettiest, coolest 3D photography I've seen to date. If you need to see a family film (or any film for that matter) and trying to decide between Hugo and The Muppets, don't pick one over the other. See both.

Erica: I loved Hugo. I haven't read the book, although I did purchase it at the pre-screening book signing last night and wanted to rip it open the second I left the screening. I knew it would look awesome being that it was a Scorsese film but it was so jaw droppingly beautiful, I couldn't believe this was a movie. The acting was very well done. The comic relief, as usual, came from Sacha Baron Cohen but I was most impressed with Asa Butterfield, the child who played Hugo. I think seeing this movie with an introduction and comparison from book to screen by the book author, Brian Selznick and screenwriter, John Logan made me appreciate the movie on a whole different level. The 3D is stunning and the movie is just whimsical. I honestly think this is the best 3D movie I have ever seen. Enjoy your families this weekend, go do a double feature of Hugo and The Muppets.


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