Monday, April 9, 2012

H = HUGO - A to Z Blog Challenge

 A little boy all alone . . . except for the one thing that gives him hope

Hugo, Image via Wikipedia


2011 - Director, Martin Scorsese; written by John Logan. 
Co-production GK Films and Infinitum Nihil. Distributed by Paramount Pictures

A small boy’s search for a message from his deceased father leads him to a secret instead.  Hugo lives in the train station and learns to maintain the clock mechanism from his alcoholic uncle after his father dies in a museum fire.  By maintaining the clock mechanism, he can live in the train station and continue his father’s work on a non-working automaton rescued from the museum.

The train station is the setting for a community of characters, a woman 'of a certain age' and her friend, a gendarme who takes his job seriously, a flower girl and a few dogs. One of the characters, Méliès, a grumpy toy store owner, accuses Hugo of stealing toy parts, then in a turnabout, offers the boy a chance to pay back what he has stolen by working around the store.

Hugo then meets Isabelle, the goddaughter of Méliès, and discovers that the toy store owner has a secret past, too.  Between Isabelle and Hugo, a friendship deepens as they help an old man retrieve his life by unravelling the clues.  Along the way, the secondary characters provide us with interesting distractions.  The story of Méliès, within the story of Hugo, is a nice touch since it's true.  See previous post for F,  French Films.


One scene seems to be a tip of the hat to Harold Lloyd, the silent film star who loved to hang around with clocks. The inspiration for the clock featured in the Hugo film released in 2011 was the former Gare Montparnasse, an elegant railway station in Paris.

Have you seen the movie Hugo? Do you plan to? Any comments?


References/Links:   Hugo Trailer   about Hugo, the movie

Montparnasse Train Station, 1895 Derailment