Hugo (2011), "Through the Station"
Martin Scorsese's Hugo, about the life of French illusionist and early cinema pioneer Georges Méliès, and set mostly in the railway station of Gare Montparnasse in 1931, was always going to require visual effects to bring its world to life. But one particular shot is truly mind-melting for its complexity and ingenious sleight of hand. Even if you noticed it, there's no way you realized just how much went into it.
Scorsese saw the shot featuring railway resident Hugo (Asa Butterfield) weaving in and around the secret back rooms and passages of the station and its famous clock as a "oner," meaning it appears to be just one long take. That required visual-effects studio Pixomondo to piece together several takes on several different sets, for a total of 1,203 frames, or 50 seconds of action, in stereo. They captured these takes in all manner of ways: using a handheld Steadicam, a camera crane, and even following Butterfield down a ladder and a chute.