March 19, 2012

Justify My Netflix: Hugo

(Like many Netflix customers, I too can get quite lax with the timely watching and returning of my movies, which of course defeats the entire purpose of having a flat-rate rental plan in the first place. To combat that, I am now writing standardized mini-reviews of each and every movie I end up watching through Netflix, both instantly and on DVD. Don't forget, all previous 'Justify My Netflix' reviews can be found on CCLaP's main movie page.)


Today's movie: Hugo, 2011 (Amazon | IMDB | Netflix | Wikipedia)

Why I added it to my queue: Because this is officially the most expensive film Martin Scorsese has ever made, the largest grossing film of his career too, as well as his very first 3D film; plus it received more Oscar nominations than any other movie in 2011 (eleven of them), winning five; plus it currently has an approval rating of 93 percent at Rotten Tomatoes, nearly unheard of for a film this big and reviewed by so many people.

The reality: Ugh. Yes, okay, I get it, people love this movie, for displaying the kind of cloying earnestness usually only seen in '80s Spielberg; but the problem is that this film displays the kind of cloying earnestness usually only seen in '80s Spielberg, and as a cynical fortysomething I have to confess that such a thing sets me on edge as badly as a roomful of screaming six-year-old girls at an ice-skating competition. Because brother, if you haven't seen it yourself yet, prepare yourself for the wonderfully magic magical wonder of it all; there isn't a single detail that hasn't been whimsied up into vomit-inducing sweetness, not a single performance that hasn't been ramped up into cartoonishly over-the-top territory (the worst surprisingly being the usually misanthropic Sacha Baron Cohen, who should be f-cking ashamed of himself for the eye-gougingly treacly job he turns in here), not a single second of running time that doesn't pathetically scream, "Now bask in the joy of it all, sheep! Bask, I say! BASK IN THE JOY, MOTHERF-CKER!" The perfect companion to our "Rick Santorum Has An Actual Shot At Being President" times, the American public's embrace of this manipulative, almost unwatchable piece of ostrich-head-in-the-sand retro-obsessed propaganda has made me lose yet a little more faith in humanity as a whole, and the fact that this has now easily become the most popular movie of Scorsese's career means that we're all just going to hell a little faster than we were before. NOW BASK IN THE JOY, MEATSACK! BAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSSKKK!!!!

Strangest piece of trivia: After an early screening, James Cameron called this the greatest 3D movie ever made. Of course he did.

Worth your time? YOU'RE ALL GOING TO HELL

Filed by Jason Pettus at 12:58 PM, March 19, 2012. Filed under: Movies | Reviews |