Saturday, 3 December 2011

161, Hugo

What could be more entertaining?  How about the new Martin Scorsese movie starring great names such as Ben Kinglsey, Ray Winstone, Emily Mortimer, Christopher Lee, Jude Law & Sacha Baron Cohen, all in a movie my 8 year old daughter could and more importantly wanted to see.  Well, something had to give - nothing is this easy and I was right.

I totally get Scorsese is a legend and the cast probably flocked to his castings without a care for the size of their fee or even how big their part was purely because of who was directing it.  I get that Ray Winstone and Jude Law only shared about 5 minutes of screen time between them and I totally get that in 3D, this could have been one of prettiest movies yet (although I cant comment as we saw the 2D version).  I even get that although set in 1930's Paris, no one speaks French and sadly, Sacha's accent is debatable as to where its supposed to be from but after getting all of the above - I totally did not get this movie.

It just seemed slow, dull and a little tedious if I'm totally honest, disappointing.

On the up side though you could not fault the acting from anyone.  Ben Kingsley was brilliant in the adult lead with the two kids, played by Nanee McPhee's Asa Butterfield & Kick-Ass's "Hit Girl" Chole Moretz holding their own among such a strong cast.  Short, sweet and perfectly formed performances from Jude Law and Ray Winstone and Sacha Baron Cohen as the inept Station Inspector and the required comedic addition with an accent as dodgy as his braced leg.  The rest of the cast were made up of stall holders at the Station where the movie is set and each had their own little side stories going on which were quite sweet.

The downside was the story.  It just did not seem to really get going at any point.  I know a lot of people will go to see this movie so I don't want to spoil the ending but the interaction of the clockwork man I though would be far more featured in the movie when in fact it was more the meaning behind him and the memories he held being to focus point of the movie.

Even after all of that though my daughter still loved it.  She loved the scuttling behind the station walls, the hobbit style existence of Hugo and the dappy Station inspector.  She loved the sweetness of Kingsley towards the end as he warmed up a little and the sadness of Hugo's lonely existence.  When all was said and done - a sweet little movie.

Whether or not this is actually a kids movie though is debatable.  I can see plenty of under 10's getting bored very quickly with the slow paced storyline and at almost 2hrs long, it really does seem to hang about when it comes to getting to the point.  There were not that many kids in the audience and I think the lure of Scorsese is enough for a majority of adults to book their seats on this one, regardless of having kids in tow but for us, although my daughter enjoyed it I was left underwhelmed.  Sorry Scorsese fans, but this one was not for me.