Films on a Friday #53 – The Monuments Men

Hello there,

It’s the last week of January, but the first week for year 2 of Films on a Friday. I did a bit of googling before I wrote this week’s review and I didn’t find too many good things. I try not to let reviews influence my opinion too much but I have to agree with what Rotten Tomatoes said: “Its intentions are noble and its cast is impressive, but neither can compensate for The Monuments Men’s stiffly nostalgic tone and curiously slack narrative.” Which is true, the story behind the plot was good and the trailer for it looked cute, but I felt like there were points where it really dragged. Critics scored it at 33% (so 33% of critics left a positive review) which I think is a little harsh, whereas audiences scored it at 44%. Directed by George Clooney, written and producted by Clooney and Grant Heslov, and starring Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Bob Balaban, Hugh Bonneville and Cate Blanchett. It was loosely based on the non-fiction book The Monuments men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History by Robert M. Edsel. (Thanks wikipedia for that list of names). Here’s an image of the real monuments men:

monuments-men-recovered-artworks

3. The Monuments Men

The plot, as described by IMDB, goes as follows: “An unlikely World War II platoon is tasked to rescue art masterpieces from Nazi thieves and return them to their owners.” It raised questions like what was really important in war: killing the enemy or saving art and historical landmarks so that people have something to go back to after the war. Before watching The Monuments Men, I never really appreciated the meaning of art. I think it’s really impressive but I have never been one for art galleries or viewing paintings. But there was a conversation in the film that said if you destroy a country’s art then you are destroying their history and the culture their people have created; and that’s what they were saving.

All in all, I think Rotten Tomatoes had it pretty spot on. The plot was a good idea and definitely makes a viewer reconsider the importance and meaning of historical artwork. However I did find it rather slow in some places which really depreciated the entertainment factor of The Monuments Men.

The snow is most definitely here in New York, all of my classes were cancelled on Monday and Tuesday so I only actually had 4 classes this week – I can handle that! I hope you all have a fantastic weekend, stay warm.

Sophie x

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