Friday, Nov 22, 2019
 
search SGN
SERVING SEATTLE AND THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST FOR 37 YEARS!

click to visit advertiser's website


Javascript DHTML Drop Down Menu Powered by dhtml-menu-builder.com

Last Weeks Edition
   
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
 
 
 

 

 

[Valid RSS]

click to go to advertisers website
Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, December 2, 2011 - Volume 39 Issue 48
Scorsese's Hugo pure cinematic magic
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
  next story
Scorsese's Hugo pure cinematic magic

by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN Contributing Writer

Hugo
Now Playing


Hugo Cabret (Asa Butterfield) lives in the walls of the Paris train station. The 12-year-old, much like his late clock-making father (Jude Law), is something of a mechanical genius, and with his drunken uncle Claude (Ray Winstone) mysteriously away, it is up to him to make sure all of the station's clocks run with their usual precision. To do so, he must avoid the constant badgering of the facility's chief inspector (Sacha Baron Cohen), whose main joy in life is ridding the massive building of orphans by taking them away to the orphanage.

But Hugo isn't just intent on making sure the clocks continue ticking. He is also consumed with a passion to rebuild a broken automaton his father once discovered in a museum's attic. He is sure that by fixing it, he will reveal a final message from his dearly departed dad, that its words will give him some sort of reason as to why these troubles have befallen him and help the lad discover his life's purpose. What he does not know is that this quest will also lead him to the mysterious Georges Méliès (Ben Kinglsey), and with the help of the old man's free-spirited goddaughter Isabelle (Chloë Grace Moretz), Hugo will change more lives for the better than just his own.

Based on the beloved novel The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick, legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese's (Shutter Island, The Departed) 3D adaptation Hugo is at times a visual and emotional marvel that moved me to euphoric tears. Its sensational final 30 minutes are a celebration of the cinematic medium, a jovial harkening to the days of silent film and childlike imagination that speaks to the very best of who we are. It is a miraculous achievement that Hugo, during this home stretch, engages on levels and in ways few other films can admit to, and as such, it makes a decided case to be considered as one of the year's finest achievements.

Yet there are issues. Scorsese and screenwriter John Logan (Rango, The Aviator) is not entirely successful in translating Selznick's prose to the big screen. The entire subplot involving the inspector's never-ending quest to capture Hugo gets old far too fast, and there are moments where the movie dips into a state of juvenile sentimentality more suited to a Nickelodeon or Disney Channel sitcom than to high drama. More so, while I was never bored by the proceedings, it does take the movie a bit of time to hit its stride, and as wonderful as Hugo and Isabelle's friendship climactically proves to be, getting there took a tad more effort than it needed to.

But no filmmaker, not even James Cameron with Avatar, has used the 3D process in such a profound and intimate way. There were moments where I could actually feel myself disappearing within the frame, becoming one with the wispy bits of dust and spiraling layers of smoke filtering through it. This is as immersive a motion picture as any I have ever had the pleasure to experience, and if this is truly the future of 3D as it pertains to cinema, then I might finally have to reconsider my reticence toward the technology.

More than that, though, Scorsese has found a way to extrapolate on his love for the camera and the cinematic medium in a way that speaks universally to the child within us all. Hugo is more than a history lesson; it is a love letter, beautifully conveying the importance and significance of the early days of moviemaking and lovingly showcasing how those first moving images of trains, crowds mingling, and men journeying to the moon shaped the filmmakers of today. It enraptures the soul, engages the intellect, and connects in an emotional way that had me mesmerized. I could not look away from the screen, and the smile never left my face during the third act's bit of blissful delirium.

Yet do not misunderstand, what makes all this borderline brilliant is that Scorsese never forgets about his characters, never loses sight of Hugo's story or how his journey plays upon Méliès and his family. What is discovered comes from a character-driven place that is as distinct as it is wonderful, adding to the film's innate power to charm and to beguile and proving once again the best stories are always the ones you can relate to on a personal level.

This review could go on forever. There is so much more to talk about, so much just on a technical front - whether it be Howard Shore's (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse) score, Robert Richardson's (Inglourious Basterds) cinematography, or Dante Ferretti's (The Black Dahlia) eye-popping production design - I don't even know where to begin. I could go on about the intricacies of the script, the delicate and subtlety complex nature of the majority of the performances (although Cohen did get on my nerves at times), or how Moretz's use of the word 'clandestine' made me shiver in absolute giggly glee.

The point is that, even with its flaws, Hugo is such a wondrous achievement on so many different levels that trying to go into detail in regard to them all borders on impossible. For me, the end result is that Scorsese has manufactured a motion picture that articulates everything I love and adore about cinema, but has done so in a way that also speaks to the greater angels within us all and to the better people each and every one of us hopes on some level to be. It is, in a word, sublime, and here's hoping general audiences will take the time to discover its heartwarming magic for themselves.

Tell a friend:

Share on Facebook  Share on Facebook

Post to MySpace!Share on MySpace!

    Share on Delicious

Share on StumbleUpon!

This year's Ham is to die for!
------------------------------
Cool Yule kicks off holiday season with serious music, outrageous skits
------------------------------
Dina Martina is back to make the holidays surreal
------------------------------
Deborah Cox to headline Seattle Red Dress Party
------------------------------
Man in the Newspaper Hat falls well short of potential
------------------------------
Beasley's Christmas Party a sure-fire family favorite
------------------------------
A holiday hangover with a Ho
------------------------------
Grammy nominations: West leads, Seattle acts nab three
------------------------------

------------------------------
Hillary Clinton's most impressive speech on human/lgbt rights in Geneva...most incredible

http://www.humanrights.gov/2011/12/06/human-rights-geneva/

------------------------------
A Dyke About Town: Ain't Misbehavin' a lot of fun
------------------------------
Scorsese's Hugo pure cinematic magic
------------------------------
Muppets still make a rainbow connection
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------
Q-Scopes by Jack Fertig
------------------------------

------------------------------
Tori Amos interview coming December 9
------------------------------
Northwest News
------------------------------
Letters
------------------------------
West Side Story a great restoration of a great musical
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

click to visit advertiser's website

click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
Seattle Gay Blog post your own information on
the Seattle Gay Blog
 

gay news feeds gay news readers gay rss gay
http://sgn.org/rss.xml | what is RSS? | Add to Google use Google to set up your RSS feed
SGN Calendar For Mobile Phones http://sgn.org/rssCalendarMobile.xml
SGN Calendar http://sgn.org/rssCalendar.xml

Seattle Gay News - SGN
1605 12 Ave., Ste. 31
Seattle, WA 98122

Phone 206-324-4297
Fax 206-322-7188

email: sgn2@sgn.org
website suggestions: web@sgn.org

copyright Seattle Gay News - DigitalTeamWorks 2011

USA Gay News American News American Gay News USA American Gay News United States American Lesbian News USA American Lesbian News United States USA News
Pacific Northwest News in Seattle News in Washington State News