This weekend, Ron and I took Jay to see Hugo, the story of a young boy, an orphan, living in the walls of a Paris train station in the 1930′s. The story wasn’t new to us. Four years ago, I was lucky enough to have shared the book with Jay and when it came to the big screen, I couldn’t wait to share the film.
I wasn’t disappointed. Martin Scorcese has created a dazzling piece of art that really should be seen and shared in a theater. It’s the kind of film that the audience applauds. Jay loved it, I loved it, even Ron loved it. We live in Vermont, so 3D wasn’t an option, I imagine that is fabulous. Even so, the sets are magical and magnificent.
The cast features Asa Butterfield as Hugo and Chloe Grace Moretz as Isabelle. Their sweet, open friendship and childhood wonder is delightful. Sasha Baron Cohen, that’s right, Borat, as The Stationmaster, obsessed with catching orphans is perfectly horrid and bizarre and ultimately human. Ben Kingsley, as Georges Melies is, well, he’s Ben Kingsley, wonderful in any role. Keep your eyes open for the Johnny Depp cameos, this is his kind of movie, and for Jude Law as Hugo’s father.
Scorcese won a Golden Globe for his direction. He had a lot to which to aspire. In 2008, the book, ‘The Invention of Hugo Cabret’, by Brian Selznick was the first novel to win The Caldecott Medal awarded annually to the artist of an American Picture book. Over 500 pages long, it is a historical novel inspired by the true story of Georges Melies, a pioneer of film. Nearly 300 of the pages are black and white drawings. It’s beautiful, truly a work of art.
See the movie, you’ll love it and leave the theater with a sense of wonder. Buy the book, for a child you love or for yourself to treasure. It is a masterpiece.