New options for your home viewing this week:
One of the very best films of 2011, Hugo tells the story of the eponymous orphan (Asa Butterfield) who lives behind the scenes of a busy Paris train station in the early 1930s. It is a story of loss and acceptance, of regret and redemption, of the influence of the individual on society and the community’s ability to restore the individual. The film’s first acts are enchanting as young Hugo Cabret goes about his reclusive life, meeting a bitter shop owner (Ben Kingsley), falling for an energetic bookworm (Chloë Grace Moretz), and running from the hard-nosed chief station inspector (Sacha Baron Cohen). It becomes truly magical when Hugo begins to uncover the world of cinema to discover the fate of Georges Méliès. Director Martin Scorsese, an ardent advocate for the cause of film preservation, brings an abundance of passion to the material, which lives and breathes with a deeply rooted adoration of the medium and of the power of narrative itself. My review is here. Available on DVD, Blu-ray, and Blu-ray 3D.