Thursday 19 July 2012

Review on 'The Invention of Hugo Cabret'

Hugo is a 12 year old boy. When his father dies in a fire, he is forced to be his uncles apprentice and work inside the walls of a train station in Paris, helping to keep the clocks working. However when his uncle mysteriously disappears, Hugo is forced to keep the clocks running alone, with his only distraction being to fix the automaton his father had been working on before he had died. With the help of his friend Isabelle, Hugo fixes the automaton and discovers a secret drawing, which helps him on his quest to find out who Isabelles godfather really is.

I thought this novel was really unique, as it is told through both drawings and text. Although it is similar to a graphic novel, it is not quite the same as some parts of the story are told through pictures alone with no text to accompany them, which gives it almost a cinematic feel. I thought this way of presenting the book was well thought out, as the books main focus is the history of film, focusing on film maker Georges Melies, who we learn from the book made over 500 films, his most popular film being called ‘A Trip To The Moon.’ As well as being greatly entertaining, the book is also educational as the reader learns real facts about film, such as information on the life of Georges Melies and also a few other facts, e.g one of the very first films, a train pulling into a station, which caused the audience to believe they were going to get hit by the train, as they had never witnessed anything like it before. As I enjoy non fiction being combined with fiction, I thought this was a clever way of doing it, as fictional characters were combined with the character of Georges Melies, whose story in the book was accurate to real life events.

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