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The Monuments Men

The story of The Monuments Men is inspiring. During World War II, a squadron of older art scholars was dispatched to Europe in an effort to protect art and other precious cultural artifacts from being destroyed by bombs, stolen by the Nazis or swiped by private collectors. It sounds like incredible fodder for a film, especially with George Clooney in front of and behind the camera, and a dream cast that includes Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, John Goodman, Bill Murray and Jean Dujardin. Alas, what could have been a weird cross between Inglourious Basterds and Ocean’s Eleven turns out to be a bit of a slog. A beautiful slog, sure, with its glorious images of European architecture, painting and sculpture, but a slog nonetheless. Much of the dullness comes from an episodic story line that requires these great performers to spend most of the film apart, contemplating in voice-over whether art is worth the ultimate sacrifice and pontificating about the righteousness of their cause. The performances are great and the views are stunning, but The Monuments Men still comes off more as a sermon than an entertaining piece of art unto itself.
  • Genres: Action, Docudrama, Historical drama, Thriller
  • Running Time: 130 minutes
  • Release Date: Friday, February 7, 2014
  • Country: United States
  • Language: English
  • MPAA Rating: PG-13 [ Historical Smoking, Some Images of War Violence ]
  • Critic's Score: C+
  • Starring: George Clooney [Frank Stokes], Matt Damon [James Granger], Bill Murray [Richard Campbell], John Goodman [Walter Garfield], Jean Dujardin [Jean Claude Clermont], Bob Balaban [Preston Savitz], Hugh Bonneville [Donald Jeffries], Dimitri Leonidas [Sam Epstein], Cate Blanchett [Claire Simone], Justus von Dohnányi [Viktor Stahl], Holger Handtke [Colonel Wegner], Michael Hofland [Priest (Claude)], Zachary Baharov [Commander Elya], Michael Brandner [Dentist], Sam Hazeldine [Colonel Langton], Miles Jupp [Major Feilding], Alexandre Desplat [Emile], Diarmaid Murtagh [Captain Harpen], Serge Hazanavicius [Rene Armand]
  • Directed by: George Clooney [Director], George Clooney [Screenwriter], Grant Heslov [Screenwriter], Grant Heslov [Producer], George Clooney [Producer], Barbara Hall [Executive Producer], Phedon Papamichael [Cinematographer], Jim Bissell [Production Design], Stephen Mirrione [Film Editor], Alexandre Desplat [Original Music], Louise Frogley [Costume Designer], Helen Jarvis [Supervising Art Direction], David Scheunemann [Art Director], Cornelia Ott [Art Director], Bernhard Henrich [Set Decoration]
  • Visit the Movie Website | Watch the trailer

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  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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