Hugo's father dies in a fire at the museum he works at. He leaves the automaton unfinished and Hugo now is determined to fix it. Because of his father's death, Hugo has to live with his Uncle Claude.
This is the key to my automaton!
That is Papa George's name!
A few years later Hugo tries to steal a wind-up mouse which will help him fix his automaton. He gets caught by the shopkeeper, George Meiles, and has to give him his father's notebook.
Be quiet! Before George hears you!
Hugo meets a girl called Isabelle and asks her to get his notebook back. Later the shopkeeper makes Hugo work for his notebook in the toy store.
Hugo runs to find the automaton but he is caught by the station inspector. Papa George rescues him and takes him to a George Meiles memorial night.
Hugo runs away from Isabelle but she trips and a heart shaped key hanging from her necklace falls out. Hugo realises it is the key to his automaton. The automaton signs a drawing with 'George Meiles'.
Hogo and Isabelle rush to show Mama Jean but she is enraged and sends them to a room to be quiet. In the room they find a box and lots of drawings burst out of it. Papa George hears and starts ripping them up.
Hugo and Isabelle go to the film academy library where they meet Rene Tebard. He has an old tape of George Meiles and they show it to Papa George and Mama Jean. Papa George explains everything.