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Hugo full of nostalgic magic 

Scorcese's 3D family film has much to recommend it

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Martin Scorsese makes 3D magic out of Brian Selznick’s book, The Invention of Hugo Cabret. Orphan Hugo (Asa Butterfield) lives in a bustling Paris train station, where he tinkers with clocks and ponders the riddle behind an automaton, a souvenir of his late father. Verbose bookworm Isabelle (Chloë Grace Moretz) befriends Hugo---the two unfurl a (historically half-accurate) mystery hinging on French filmmaker Georges Méliès (Ben Kingsley), an innovator of special effects. Hugo commences at a snail’s pace, but eventually revs up into a nostalgic tale about motion pictures and the dreams they hold within. Sacha Baron Cohen’s performance as the klutzy station inspector lightens up the mood for the better, lest things get too earnest with the simplistic everyone-has-a-purpose lesson at the movie’s heart. The only unsolved puzzle: why Scorsese chose British accents as the default fill-in for French.


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