I was actually very impressed by the film Hugo. It is my favorite film that we have watched in this class throughout the semester. The way it was digitally constructed and the messages behind the narrative drew my attention towards the film even more.
The digital construction gave the film a very crisp, detailed appearance. The preciseness of the setting, along with the characters, elicits the same imaginary feeling one undergoes while watching fantasy films. Digital manufacturing allows for these intricacies due to the enhancement of technology. This method of production adds to the message behind the film, in that even though people are living in a machinery world, it is important to not loose sight of who he or she is and where they belong in this “machine.” In the end we all function as one unit, helping one another, creating an even more efficient world.
This film contained several hidden messages both explicitly and implicitly. This is done explicitly through the use of props like the clock. One of the initial shots of the film depicts a clock in which you can see Hugo’s face peeping from one of the numbers. Hugo actually winds the clocks at the train station daily. He thoroughly enjoys working with machinery, evident as he sets the clocks everyday and strives to mend the metal women. Time is capable of fixing anything and just because something is in the past does not necessarily mean it has been forgotten or lost its importance. The metaphor verbalized by Melie at the end touches upon this perfectly. He mentions how Hugo fixed himself (Melie) and his machine both metaphorically and physically. With that being said, one may grant Hugo with the archetypal role of a hero.
Extra- diegetic sound is found through out the vast majority of film. This helps guide the viewer’s emotions and reactions toward what is occurring on screen. For instance, towards the latter portion of the film when Hugo is racing through the train station attempting to run away from the station inspector, frantically fast pace sound is being played I the background. This gets the audience to sit up towards the front of their chair as they become anxious, hoping that Hugo will make it out before being caught.
The incorporation of history added another extremely interesting point to the film. At several points during the film, it would touch back to historical moments in time of film like the Lumiere brothers. I think the historical aspects just function to show us that no matter how dated something may be it still plays an essential role in society.
This goes without say, but the detail in this film is extraordinary and I am sure there is plenty that I did not even catch or understand.