The Monuments Men (2014) Review

During World War II a platoon are given a rather special and different mission, to rescue art masterpieces that had been stolen by Nazi thieves and return them to their rightful owners.


Based on a true story of what we can deem the greatest treasure hunt in history. The Monuments Men was a task that you would never really think about when it comes to war, but with the masterpieces being trapped behind enemy lines and in caves that would be destroyed everything when the Reich fell would they be able to save 1000s of years worth of culture as well as risking their lives to do so.

Our story moves from 1943 to 1945 and it is looking as though victory is close but Frank Stokes convinces President Roosevelt that it will have little meaning if all of the artistic treasures of Western civilisation are lost. The army unit then assigned to saving history were nicknamed “Monuments Men” who were made up of museum directors, curators, art historians and an architect to help guide the Allied units in the search for the art. I mean that really was a good thing right? Of course, having the people who were passionate about saving everything.

Claire Simone becomes a vital character within the story as she was in France and forced to help Nazi officers and her gallery is all moved to Germany. She becomes a key figure in helping the investigation and locating the art, even though she feels very much like a spy when she does not trust the Americans thinking they want to take the art for themselves and not fully understanding the mission.

The thing is this film is so much damn fun and I really don’t think I was fully prepared for that, I missed this on its cinema release and in all honesty not fully sure how that happened given the incredible cast that was put together with George Clooney taking on the director role as well as co-writing the screenplay.

Seriously though the casting for this film really was top tier! Allowing to balance the tough nature of the war with some comedic moments was perfect with Bill Murray and John Goodman being so brilliant. Then we have George Clooney and Matt Damon balancing everything out in such a good manner. Hugh Bonneville being British presence which is alway welcomed. Cate Blanchett is utterly incredible and it left me wondering if there’s anything she cannot do or pull off, and allowed me to realise that she is one of my all time favourite actresses.

I have always been very interested in World War II and this was another side to it all that I had no idea about and while the film was loosely based on the true story I felt as though it was shown in a decent manner. The characters were based on those from history and from the book the story came from which I feel as though makes for rather interesting viewing.

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