Parent reviews for Hugo

Common Sense says

Spectacular book adaptation is great for tweens and up.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 9+
Based on 38 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 108 reviews
Parent of a 11 and 14 year old Written byConcerned Smart... January 13, 2012

Loved the movie, Sasha Cohen not so much.

The movie is artistically delightful. Totally recommend it. However, I must agree with the other reviews that Sasha Cohen's part as station inspector was distracting. Additionally, his repeated dialogues regarding a co-worker's wife's infidelity and pregnancy were inappropriate. You should just cough loudly & repeatedly during the movie when he is speaking on the phone and walking a child to the back of a truck. We still loved the movie regardless, just wished he would have been left out. When will Hollywood stop throwing in adult situations/language/etc in kid's movies?

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Sexy stuff
Adult Written byOverly sensitive? December 17, 2011

Disturbing to a sensitive person. The mechanical transformation of the boy upset me too. I am 63 and I wouldn't recommend it for anyone. Sorry!

To me it was just sad. I grew up in poverty and without family models (absent, neglectful parents. The colors in film were dreary, the home life was absent. It made me fall asleep it was so sad.
Parent of a 9 year old Written byNick's Momma December 5, 2011

Finally! A film that is actually full of delightful surprises

My son loved this and said "5 stars mommy, 5 stars!" when we got out. We normally don't like 3D either since it can be too much for the little guys and the glasses are that comfortable, but the 3D in this film is very well done and is not over used. This is a really special film, that celebrates film itself and we highly recommend it. I think the 8 target you have above is right-on. My son is 9 and I think anyone under 8 may be too sensitive to the scene where his father dies in a fire and the fact that he is orphaned and living in a train station.
Parent of a 3 and 6 year old Written byHolly M December 15, 2011

Great with Parent Prep & Discussion

My husband and I saw this movie for a "date night" and to see if it would be appropriate for our six year old son. We both enjoyed the film very, very much. We have not read the book, but found the film had great visuals, a great story, good acting, and was educational too! Many have commented about a lack of entertainment by the train station inspector, but I thought Sasha Baron Cohen was great. Definitely a different role for him and a different kind of funny, but funny non the less. There are some intense scenes that I think could be a little scary and stressful for my son: the father's death, the boy's nightmare's, the sadness and anger the filmmaker exhibits. Even so, I still might let my son see the movie with his father. The fascinating tinkering, inventing, and "fixing things" is just right up our guy's alley! The movie also beautifully portrays the early history of film. Also, the idea of having a purpose, being a part of something bigger than yourself, is wonderful. I think this film is a beautiful way to explore this idea with children. The lonely orphaned Hugo, looks out over the nighttime bustling city of Paris, imagining it all to be a great machine, and he muses that he knows he must belong in this world, even though he is so alone, because machines don't have extra parts. He refuses to be an extra part that doesn't fit in this world, despite all his hardships. I think that can and should be talked about and emphasized, even with a younger child. I think my son and I will have great conversations, both before and after the movie, that will make it less scary, more meaningful, and a film worth seeing, while we can, in 3D!

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 7, 9, and 14 year old Written bypanamamama January 23, 2012


I adored this book and the movie didn't disappoint! Lovely camerawork and sweet story. There are some sad scenes which might be too much for some younger children. Loved it.
Parent Written byInAnyEvent December 3, 2011

WI moviegoers

It says a lot to having a purpose in life, finding your purpose in life.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent Written bymissy1234 November 23, 2011

Good movie!

My family saw this today - husband, two daughters and me (wife!). My older daughter is almost 13 and really liked it (because she read the book!) while my 9 year old was lost a lot of the times. My husband and I liked the movie also but didn't really see the need for 3D as the glasses drive us crazy as well as the price! I would recommend it to others.
Parent of a 10 year old Written byCBeth November 26, 2011

Beautiful cinematography; not quite the book

The visuals in this movie are lovely and in that way it does try to evoke the glory of movie-making. As others have said, it is a nice tribute to the magic of movies. For those of us who read and loved the book, the art of the book was a lot of its magic, and although the movie was different, it did seem to try to capture the beauty and intensity of the graphics. The star actor who plays Hugo is very talented and fans of British actors will see some favorites in supporting roles (including some from the Harry Potter movies). [spoiler alert ahead] I could not, however, give it an unqualified thumbs-up because of a few changes from the book. Inevitably, of course, there are changes from a book to a movie, particularly when length is an issue. However, what was done here was not just excising some plots/characters (e.g., the nice "Etienne" character) but adding an entire plot line and dimension that was not in the book. The Station Inspector becomes almost a main character and some of the actions seem gratuitous, with added chase scenes, a threatening dog, etc. I minded less the little subplot about the cafe owner and the newspaper stand owner, mostly because it was relatively minor (and it did add some light comic relief, nicely done but not found in the book). I assume that the book's author approved the modifications and additions, but from those of us who loved the book, it seemed somewhat off-kilter.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Parent Written byJefrey May 26, 2013

Good for younger viewers as well.

This is an extremely intelligent film for people who spend time cultivating an appreciation for arts and education with their children. If you watch this movie with your child (rather than plopping them down in front of the screen alone), then many an intelligent discussion will follow. I disagreed with the intial reviewer's statement that this movie might not engage younger viewers, when essentially this loosely fact based story is a tale of magic, love, and second chances.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 10 and 16 year old Written byWife-mother-law... July 16, 2016


This visually stunning film is a little scary and complicated so it is not for young children. The parts about the history of film making might lose younger viewers, while the fear and heartache Hugo experiences may be too intense for children less than 9 or 10. Masterful movie making.
Adult Written byCSM Screen name... February 9, 2014

Ok, I guess

Hugo is a very well made movie. I personally do not like the story very much, there is not very much action. I said 9 and up because it would be hard to understand for anyone below that age. kids might like it but I do not.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Parent of a 7 year old Written byRealityRobin December 16, 2011

Beautiful movie for adults, slow for kids

We were very excited to see this movie since we read this book to our 7 year old son. I was impressed that he was able to sit through the entire 3D movie without squirming too much... because the pace is pretty slow. The amazing 3D scenes (that are in the trailer) are few and far between. I wish I could change my rating to "appropriate for kids 10 & OLDER." It was a beautiful movie and it has a great message... but the movie drags for younger kids.
Adult Written bymcshawnboy January 11, 2012

Excellent Synopsis Of Early Film History

This isn't a movie you can park kids in front of unless they have the ability to pay close attention to the story.
Adult Written byFilmDad2013 March 24, 2013

Hugo no go

The film is filled with un answered questions between characters, that if answered, could have eliminated issues and awkward situations that could have resulted in a shorter more enjoyable movie. No mention was made of the father's clock shop or any money the father had. In my families opinion (aged 11 to 45) this movie was tedious, slow moving, confusing and frustrating. It showed the need speak up and to answer questions when they are asked of you, which would eliminate problematic situations. Also we didn't find humor in the way the disabled security officer was presented.
Adult Written byJEDI micah February 23, 2013


I didn't really find this movie really fascinating. I mean, it is great to see a movie that tells the history of movies, but, I don't know, something about it made me not want to finish it. Other families may find this movie entertaining.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Positive role models
Violence & scariness
Adult Written byAlley6S April 9, 2012

Beautiful Hugo

The only thing inappropriate about this movie (why I haven't shown it to my five-year-old) is that it is a little slow. It won't go over well with kids with short attention spans, but my nine- and ten-year-olds loved it. If your child had the attention span and maturity to appreciate the book, they'll love the movie, too. It is beautifully done, and has a sweet message about working hard and chasing your dreams even when the path leads you to dreams you never knew were options.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written byPranesh September 22, 2012

roadsidemovie - Hugo review

Hugo is a good movie, but the only problem is it drives you in the middle of the movie to expect something is going to happen and it never really happen and you may end up disappointed. So keep your expectations to low and just flow with the movie. It's kind of fantasy movie but don't expect it to be magical fantasy. Other than that as I said, its a good movie.
Parent Written byngeorgianow December 26, 2016

Great movie in the tradition of old movies

This story is told so well, that even my 5 year old son was captivated by it. The visuals are great. The dialogue and flow can be a little strange but still great due to the interesting visuals. There is a part where the inspector is talking to the person picking up the orphans that is totally strange and out of place. Parents can definitely just turn down the volume when the kids are being caught by the inspector. It just does not make sense other than the fact that a G rating is the kiss of death for movies today (sad to say but I think true). There are a few parts that my youngest had to turn away, a little bit of over his head and some scary images that could be a little haunting for him but he closed his eyes when he felt the need.
Adult Written byCatdaddyKeys January 27, 2012

May Provide Kids a Road to Silent Films!

The loss of Hugo's father will disturb youngest viewers, but it is handled tastefully, and is essential to the plot. This is rich storytelling that may give families a catalyst to begin sharing movies from the amazing silent film era with our overstimulated kids! Note also that the 3-D is unusually good - Scorsese uses it as integral to the environment.
Parent Written byAtirpak April 22, 2016

Age Appropriate and Interesting

This is a really good movie to show middle schoolers. I always struggle to find good movies with no cursing/no violence to show my classes during testing times/end of the year. This is a great movie that kept most of the kids' interest. It is a little slow paced, but the scenery is really neat and my students got into it towards the middle/end of the movie.

This title contains:

Positive Messages