Archive for the ‘George Clooney’ Category

The Treasures of War

monuments_men

The Monuments Men

Director: George Clooney

Starring: George Clooney, Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, John Goodman, Bob Balaban, Bill Murray, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, Sam Hazeldine

Actor and director George Clooney and screenwriter Grant Heslov, the team behind The Men Who Stare at Goats and Good Night and Good Luck, team up for an old-fashioned historical war film about a middle aged group of men who set out during the latter years of World War II to recover most of the stolen art works secretly stashed in Nazi hordes across France, Belgium and parts of Germany from 1943 to 1945 as the Germans retreated in defeat as the tide of war turned against them. Whilst The Monuments Men boasts an all star cast including Bill Murray, Jean Dujardin (from The Artist), John Goodman and Matt Damon, the film doesn’t quite match up to the incisive political comment of the Oscar winning Good Night and Good Luck about the approaching threat of McCarthyism on broadcast journalists in the 1950’s.

Instead, Heslov and Clooney focus more on the after effects of war and looting and the utter destruction of entire communities, mainly the European Jews at the hands of the ruthless Nazi’s during the holocaust. There are moments of humour interjected in a mainly historical narrative about how these men travelled across the European Theatres of War from Paris to Brugge to Normandy to track down the hugely valuable and culturally significant pieces of art works stolen by the Nazi’s from Rembrandts to Michelangelo’s famed sculpture Madonna and child stolen from a Belgium monastery.

There is a brief interlude with Damon  as Captain James Granger teaming up with a French Resistance woman in Paris forced to work for the Nazi’s Claire Simone played by Cate Blanchett, with an indistinguishable European accent. There is the witty banter between Richard Campbell and Preston Savitz played respectively by Bill Murray and Bob Balaban and then there is a wonderful cameo by Hugh Bonneville (Downton Abbey) as Donald Jeffries a British Lieutenant who sobers up to join the Monuments Men to save his famed Madonna.

Whilst at times The Monuments Men comes across as sentimental and nostalgic, it’s because its focusing more on the saving of priceless art than on the horrors of conflict and the utter destruction of parts of Europe. This film is in no league to such Oscar winners as Saving Private Ryan or Anthony Minghella’s elegant The English Patient. Instead The Monuments Men shines light on the aspect of war which is often neglected the looting of treasures by the conqueror over the defeated and the crazy scheme of Hitler’s 3rd Reich to build a Fuhrer Art Museum in Berlin, which naturally never materialized. If anyone has been to the great art museums of London, Amsterdam, Paris or New York, many viewers will know that much of the greatest artworks was saved and restored to their original glory.

For art historians, The Monuments Men is a delightful and fascinating film, but for lovers of War films, don’t expect loads of action or bloodshed, just lots of barbed humour and the occasional tragic scene as this band of merry men navigate through dangerous battlefields to reclaim the original treasures of war. Recommended for lovers of nostalgic war films.

Film Directors & Festivals
Review Calender
July 2020
M T W T F S S
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  
  • U.K. to Offer Hollywood Actors, Crew Exemption From Quarantine Rules
    The U.K. government is to exempt some leading U.S. actors, such as Tom Cruise, and crew from its 14-day travel quarantine to allow Hollywood blockbusters to resume production. The move follows a conversation between culture secretary Oliver Dowden and Cruise earlier this week about restarting filming on the latest “Mission: Impossible” movie. The exemption will […]
    Leo Barraclough
  • Ashley Benson Gives Laughlin Park a Second Shot
    Fresh off her breakup with longtime partner Cara Delevingne, “Pretty Little Liars” alum Ashley Benson has celebrated her independence as only the rich and/or famous can — by purchasing a new mansion in one of L.A.’s most famous and exclusive gated communities, the historic Laughlin Park enclave in Los Feliz. If that story sounds familiar, […]
    PMC
  • Kanye West Announces, Seemingly in Earnest, That He’s Running for President This Year
    Apropos of nothing immediately apparent other than the national holiday, Kanye West took to social media Saturday night to announce that he is running for president… in 2020. “We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States,” […]
    chrislwillman
  • Ryan Adams Issues Long Statement Apologizing for Past Sexual Misconduct
    Singer-songwriter Ryan Adams — who in February of last year was accused of sexual misconduct by seven women, including his ex-wife, actor-singer Mandy Moore — has written a statement apologizing for the ways in which he “mistreated” women in the past. In a long statement in England’s Daily Mail, he wrote that he is now […]
    Jem Aswad
  • ‘Independence Day’ Star Bill Pullman Tells Americans to Wear Face Masks in Public (Watch)
    President Thomas J. Whitmore is urging Americans to wear their face masks in public. Bill Pullman, who played the character in the 1996 blockbuster “Independence Day,” gave a public service announcement about wearing masks in a video for Alamo Drafthouse. “And now, a message from the most presidential actor of all time, Bill Pullman,” the […]
    Jordan Moreau
  • Read More
    Different providers offer different cell phones, so take a look at the options from each provider to choose the right one for you. You may also want to look into any promotions that the providers have to offer, such as free cell phones in exchange for signing a contract. Tags: 2gmhass90