I don’t know what made me think this…maybe it was the promotional poster. Maybe it was the teaser trailer that I saw before Captain America (don’t laugh, he’s my dad). But somewhere along the line, I fell under the lingering impression that this was an animated Scorsese movie. So I was wrong in that.
I saw this in 2D to purposely avoid the nauseating 3D effect that I’ve come to know-and hate-so well. As a result, my review may miss the mark on how AWESUM the 3D FX WERE, DAWG. SRY. NT RLY.
Visually, Hugo was beautiful, sporting a rich color palette (lotsa blue and orange, but still had a feel to it that was quite a self contained environment) and some colorful, cartoonish characters (the station guard played by Sacha Baron Cohen in particular). I enjoyed the clock/old machine motif and the time lapse Paris shots from above (some of those reminded me of the sweeping animated aerial shots of Edinburgh in The Illusionist ). The whole movie plot-wise is peppered with moments of sentimental cheese that never fail to go a bit over the top.
In all: an enjoyable, feel-good nod to the origins of cinema and the limitless creativity and inspiration a new medium of expression can provide if placed in the proper hands.