The Monuments Men 2013

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George Clooney co-writes and directs this adaptation of Robert M. Edsel's book that follows the men tasked with saving the world's greatest works of art from the Nazis during WWII. In the last months of the war, with the Third Reich teetering on the brink of collapse, the German army are ordered to destroy every piece of looted art in their possession. In a race against time, American President Franklin D. Roosevelt mobilises a seven-man platoon comprising museum directors and art historians to rescue the cream of the world's artistic and cultural treasures from the hands of the enemy, and return them to their rightful owners. But with no previous experience of weapons and tactics, the hastily assembled group soon face a rude awakening when they experience their first live action behind enemy lines. As well as Clooney, the all-star cast includes Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, John Goodman and Jean Dujardin.

Starring:
George Clooney, Hugh Bonneville
Rental Formats:
DVD, Blu-ray

Product Details

Discs
  • Feature ages_12_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 58 minutes
Starring George Clooney, Hugh Bonneville, Bob Balaban, John Goodman, Diarmaid Murtagh, Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, Jean Dujardin, Matt Damon, Sam Hazeldine
Director George Clooney
Genres Drama
Studio 20th Century Fox
Rental release 8 August 2014
Main languages English
Dubbing Spanish, German
Subtitles Spanish, German, Turkish
Hearing impaired subtitles English
Discs
  • Feature ages_12_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 58 minutes
Starring George Clooney, Hugh Bonneville, Bob Balaban, John Goodman, Diarmaid Murtagh, Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, Jean Dujardin, Matt Damon, Sam Hazeldine
Director George Clooney
Genres Drama
Studio 20th Century Fox
Rental release 8 August 2014
Main languages English
Dubbing Spanish, Japanese, Turkish, Polish
Subtitles Spanish, Japanese, Polish
Hearing impaired subtitles English

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Shirley Bond on 8 Dec. 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I loved this film. It has an excellent cast, presumably put together by Mr Clooney. The story is real and the war ending and moving towards Russia. It is the search for the Art which the Nazis have stolen and the band of men who are searching for it. The main cast are well known especially George Clooney who has also produced the film. The film isn't fast but jogs along at a reasonable pace, interspersed with humour. Finding the precious pieces of Art through Bruges and northern Germany made me as thrilled as it did the Monument Men. This is a film that we will watch a lot.
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58 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Rowena Hoseason HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on 18 Feb. 2014
Format: DVD
This is an extremely interesting film. It's excellent in some places; outright odd in others. It's not an action-adventure, nor a comedy, nor an historical drama, nor a revisionist post-modern cynical reinterpretation. It's more like the kind of film made 50 years ago: it's an old-fashioned, heart-on-its-sleeve 'innocent' film, one which applauds the efforts of honest men trying to do their best in difficult circumstances.

At times, The Monuments Men feels a little simplistic -- Germans bad: Americans good -- and it can be sentimental to the point of mawkishness (the Christmas shower scene is a bit over the top for most audiences). The performances are rather muted, also, as if the excellent ensemble cast are deliberately keeping their Hollywood star wattage on a dim setting, in order not to overpower the film's moral message. There has obviously been a deliberate intent to avoid glamorising the inevitable violence of war, so when fatal incidents occur they are delivered with the same flat presentation as the rest of the film and are depicted in matter-of-fact fashion as everyday idiotic happenstance. In this respect, MM is both unusual and laudable. Similarly, the scene where an SS officer who has been pillaging art is found out and arrested is underplayed with a delightfully light hand.
It struggles a bit with one unnecessary scene where Clooney's character confronts a camp commandant and delivers a strange speech about how the Nazi's accomplishments will come to naught when America goes back to normal life -- this just didn't seem to fit the narrative or serve any real purpose.
The true quest, to find and save thousands of paintings, sculptures, manuscripts and other works of art before they could be sold, stolen or destroyed is extremely powerful, however.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By STEVENSEAGALFAN+THE WIFE on 28 Feb. 2015
Format: DVD
Very good film based on true events, with a team of men who are sent to France to save the arts, from paintings to statues, which the germens stole and still steeling, during world war 2 a lot of people might think what's more important life or a painting but this film shows how much these men love there history when it comes to the greatest artists the world have ever seen.

Hitler had a plan he was going to build a huge museum in Germany so his plan was to steel as much as he can, but with the war coming to a end the germens are beginning to destroy as much as they could and hide all they can. There was a big number of priests who lost there lives trying to protect them, just shows how brave they were. This is a great film with a wonderful cast.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. L. Sievert on 14 April 2015
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Buddhism says all is temporary, nothing lasts, everything passes. Geology confirms this Buddhist outlook. Central Park in New York City was once under a sheet of ice a mile thick. Massive boulders from that time over 20,000 years ago remain in the park. So we know the truth of existence. We know that extinction is encoded in life. What then can our monuments mean? At best they are sand castles built along a stormy shore.

Even so, we stand against that tide and leave our mark. Man wants his existence to mean something, so art celebrates the idea that it does. This project of identity began over 40,000 years ago. The first stenciled handprints in caves in Europe and elsewhere prove that man was thinking symbolically by then. Reality was not just a thing in the world anymore but a concept in the mind. Consciousness, born at that time, allowed space for reflection, contemplation, wonder. Man saw his reflection in the still waters of a stream and realized for the first time that the reflection was his. This insight changed everything. The bridge from simple acceptance of reality to active awareness of it created the symbolic world we all now inhabit.

Psychologically, nothing has changed since those Cro-Magnon times. Like the person who stenciled his handprint onto a rock face, we leave our marks in stone, in books, on paper, canvases, celluloid and plastic discs. We say to the world “I am” and “I was here” and for us this statement and act is all-important. In the place where nothing lasts we try to last a bit longer. Creativity makes something out of nothing. Art then is our confession and consolation.

Consciously or not, the people who rescue art in this film know this. Their job of rescue and preservation is done in the spirit of “I am” and “I was here”.
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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Jet Lagged TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 9 Feb. 2014
Format: DVD
"If you destroy an entire generation of people's culture - it's as if they never existed."

The war is going badly for Germany. If it was being lost then Hitler's "Nero Decree", or scorched earth policy, was to come into effect. Everything of value was to be destroyed or torched by the Nazis. The ultimate in pure spite.

A team of middle-aged men was formed to try and locate and rescue the art treasures. Art treasures that were looted by the Nazis. This undercover unit of artists was Art's answer to Dad's Army. This unlikely bunch, most of whom were not exactly in the first flush of youth, were then propelled into the war zone. They were the so-called "Monuments Men" of the movie's title.

Interestingly, it was the Monuments Men who found the famous fake Vermeer in Goering's stash. The fake was done by Dutch forger Hans van Meegeren. ( An excellent account of van Meegeren's life and works can be found in "I Was Vermeer: The Forger Who Swindled the Nazis" by Frank Wynne).

The film stars and is directed by George Clooney. Matt Damon stood in for Daniel Craig (Who had scheduling problems). Bill Murray is perfectly cast as the architect from Chicago. John Goodman and Cate Blanchett also star, the latter giving a particularly good performance.

This film shouldn't be compared with Ocean's Eleven and all that. It's a slightly different type of film we have here. One that acknowledges the historical reality involved. Even so, Clooney tries to put a kind of jaunty "Great Escape" spin on some of the film - as well as a touch of Alan Alda's MASH.

Despite all the acting talent, the film never quite clicks into high gear. You feel as if something is missing. Nevertheless I would recommend this film. The story should be told and not forgotten. And it's a reminder, lest we ever forget, of the Insanity of War.
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