When I got to the local multiplex I noticed that it seemed oddly quiet. Turns out I'm the only patron not only in my showing of Hugo but in the entire multiplex!
I had already plunked down my $16.00 and it was the last night it was being shown, so I went ahead and watched it. I had the entire theater to myself which was an interesting experience. No people talking or texting and no cell phones going off. I could get used to having a theater all of my own.
After the movie I didn't notice any staff hanging around and all the lights in the hallway and lobby were in nighttime "we're closed" mode. I had a strange suspicion that they had all bailed on me. My truck was also the only vehicle in the parking lot. I guess they trusted I wasn't going to run off with all of their Twizzlers and gummi worms.
I liked the movie, but I still like "The Artist" better. Hugo was definitely worth seeing in 3D. 3D was used to enhance the story and not really gimmicky, which I despise. I wish more directors would take a cue from Hugo in regards to using 3D.
I don't think the movie was marketed very well, because it was not what I had expected at all. I wasn't familiar with the novel that it was adapted from, but I am familiar with the story of George Melies, the guy who created the classic French silent flick "Le Voyage dans Lune". It is sad but Mr. Melies did end up in his later years broke, essentially forgotten and owning a small toy shop in a train station in Paris very similar to that in the movie. He also created automatons when he was younger and a few survive to this day, but nothing like the one in the movie.
After the flick, I had a strong urge to jump on a plane to visit Paris again. Oh well.
I find it interesting that two of the Best Picture nominated films this year have the early era of filmmaking as their central theme. Both of them I thought captured the creative process and joy of filmmaking very well, especially Hugo.
In the end though, "The Artist" is still my favorite film this year, perhaps even in the past several years. Hugo though is definitely worth seeing in my opinion.