Hugo Blu-ray Review
“Hugo” is cinema at its best.
Normally, I would start off my reviews by describing the plot of a film, but I feel I would be doing a disservice to readers by doing so for “Hugo.” “Hugo” is the type of movie that one should know little to nothing about before seeing because describing it doesn’t do the film justice at all. Not even the film’s promotional materials and trailers could sell the film because it’s simply too deep a film to sum up in a two minute trailer. What I can tell you is that “Hugo” is based on the children’s novel “The Invention Of Hugo Cabret” and that the thematically rich film is about love, cinema, secrets, and family. Hopefully, that is vague enough to intrigue you.
By now, I’m sure you’ve heard that “Hugo” has been showered with acclaim and awards and it’s not hard to see why. “Hugo” is far and away one of the best films of 2011. It’s one of those rare movies that just works on every level. The story, which plays like a novel, is undeniably unique in terms of content and structure. At the start of the film, viewers are kept in the dark about what exactly is going on, but little by little as the plot unfolds, the story begins to make more sense. Eventually, the puzzle of a film becomes clear as all of the interconnected stories come together in the end.
The ensemble cast (including the scene stealing Doberman Pincher and Dachshunds) is virtually flawless here. The movie even makes the usually annoying Sacha Baron Cohen look good which is a feat in itself. The two best performers, however, are Chloe Moretz (who continues to shine as one of the best actresses around) and Ben Kingsley who gives one of the best performances of his career.
The real star of the film has to be Martin Scorsese though. After decades of making adult films, Scorsese took a risk by making a children’s film and the end result proved to be one of the most memorable films of his already illustrious career. This is clearly Scorsese’s love letter to cinema. With the help of cinematographer Robert Richardson, he not only has created a visually stunning world in this motion picture, but one with great heart too.
Summary: Buy “Hugo.”
Unless you have a 3D player, Blu-ray is the only way to see “Hugo” on home video. The vibrant colors and background details look stunning in 1080p. A perfect disc.
The 7.1 DTS-HD audio track is equally amazing. Everything from the score and sound f/x to the dialogue and the hustle and bustle of the train station will no doubt be an audiohphile’s dream.
* DVD copy and Ultraviolet Digital Copy.
* “Sacha Baron Cohen: Role Of A Lifetime”- A mockumentary featurette about Sacha Baron Cohen.
* “Big Effects, Small Scale”- A featurette about the making of the model train crashing through the glass sequence.
* “The Mechanical Man At The Heart Of Hugo”- A featurette about the automaton.
* “The Cinemagician, George Melies”- A great extra about the legendary filmmaker complete with loads of footage from his films.
* “Shoot The Moon (The Making Of Hugo)”- An interesting making of with behind-the-scenes footage, cast and crew interviews, stories of how the film came about, etc.
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