Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Monuments Men Review

Here are my notes in chronological orderish:

A film about art that is not artistic.

Dry acting. Typical "talking actors" we pay to hear them talk. The same act of
George Clooney and Matt D. That I just saw on a coffee commercial. SIGH.

All the stereo typic WW2 points and "glory" music to try and pull us in. I would love to have actually
learned about something less heard off in the history than the same old "Look at the Euro map. The Nazis are coming in from here here and here".

They try and take cheap political stabs by showing a doctor coughing while smoking a ciagerette, as he is listening to the lungs of a recruit, who is also smoking. It would have been
funny if it was like a fast scene, but they drag it out to a creepy length like: "YEah, it was like that, see how hypocritical doctors are". Kind of detracting from the humor of it.
So far, we will learn nothing new and get a spoonful of typical politico hollywood preference jumbo.

WOw, dat homosexual reference: One scene Damion and Georgy are talking to a superior, superior asks: "How is that wife of yours doing?" "Fine" says Dman, "She wants to send you a kiss which I am not about to deliver"
"That is ok" in reply, "I will just shake it", "Like you usually do" and he takes Dmans hand...Are we talking hands or hand jobs, ohhhohhhhh.
  Then in the same scene, they hop into a jeep and before leaving and the most bizzare conversation:
"Where you from?" "north side of Germany" "how are the troops making out?" "Like the lesbians"...
Whaaaa???? 2 gay jokes in one conversation at the 12:30 min mark. How cute...So we going to talk about art or war soon???

False historical information dialog 1: The team assembled they start talking about the plan. They say the team is to protect sites that have rich pieces of art hidden. The leader says "The French hide it, the germans find it". And there is a french guy that says,
"That is why Hitler did not bomb Paris". "Yes we know, but he bombed London"..."I know" snaps the french man and looks away... 2 major problems. A) This is NOT why Hitler did not bomb Paris. He did bomb PAris, and but he did it around the frontier points becuase he wanted control of the region.
Which he got. He stationed a commander there that held Paris until the Americans started coming in. And at this time, Hitler ordered all bridgers, statues, anything that had cultural heritage to be destoryed, the TnT was in place, all it took was the commander in Paris to say fire. He did not. He betrayed
Hitler because he was "found of Paris and it's people". And he saw Hitler desperatly losing the war. So...yeah.... B) They just totaly stereo typed the French the guy and took "be sympathetic to the British" route.
(Oops, wrong war film. Vietnam is stage right)

Clowny's role is sad. He points to the map in the most general non stratigic way. The dialog, one of the recruits: "Can we kill somebody?" And they are off to France.

Matt D Dog is used in a humor spot where he purposly speaks bad French, and his friend tells him "You speak bad French". But it was an awkward attempt at comedy, because unless you knew what Matt D. was saying, or if it had any relevence to the plot, then it would have been funny, otherwise, it just was still a
comical attempt to be like "French words, funny. ahahahah".
 Around all the bad humor and bad historical facts, we are learning nothing more of the plot 45 min in, in fact, the "save art" theme is so dead, they had to inject a second running plot that is sort of killing the momentum of the film. Some secretary of a German general has a brother in the resistance and he could be captured, and she is mad
and quiet honostly it is distracting plot line, cuts in and out in odd times, and has no place in the film. Taking to big of a complex plot bite for this director.

Now, to pull us in in case teh scene and cheesy humor pulled you away, we have a prep rally talk by Georgy clown. German bashing, of course. The old, "Allies against the bad guys". Don't go deeper than that. And now everyone is drinking and giving we speak to Matty D. We pose the same dialog we posed to Georgey clown at the start of the film:
"You have children?" This is like the typical WW2 movie question: "You have kids? REady to die?" Like, "HEy, you sure you are here to really help and die along side or just here to take the gold?" We get it. Got it. Good. Can we get back to the main plot line pleaasseeee!

Oh god. So, Matt D. Tries to speak to the French secretary...He tries to speak French again. The camera angle has him in the door way gesturing like a monkey. The secretary says: "You speak bad French." And MAtty says: "I can speak German if you want" and she says "NONO!" and they speak Ebglish...
Director. We get it. Matt speaks bad French. The French are snoody. But in the end, we all hate the Germans. Seriously... This script also. Repetitive. What Hollywood mafia got invstors to make this? Some one pulled on Clownt and MAtty D's leashes to get the investment in no doubt. Script alone: catasrophe.

I think the worst part of this film is the rythm. It tries to take itself wayyy to seriously. But by doing so through camera angels, those "you have kids" conversations under candle light environments. etc.. And then on the other hand there is this more light attempts at comedy through forced stero types. NO wonder this film only has 2 stars out of 5 on a free priated site. Not even the freeloaders like this P.O.S.

50 min. in more general prep rally speech; "The Madona is as much as mine as it was Napoléons" *face palm*.

Another rythme breaking scene. When one soldier writes and talks all proper for prep rallies, and then talks all "redneckish" when on the field.
 Speaking of rythm breaking, the secretary pops back up and shows Clowny a stockage of items in a building: Secretary: "Here are people lives" "What are these things"? asks clowny looking at the dishes, clothes, etc.."There are peoples things." "What people"? asks Clowny? "Jews" she says. And the scene ends....
Ok, We go from homosexual jokes, German bashing, sterotyping the French, A small resistance insertion (that never gets picked back up), and a secretary that now shows us "this is a war to save Jews"... Oh, and by the way, the art to save???so far... ZERO! Nothing at the 60min mark is at all about art. Just a group of odd actors doing nothing. Oh, and Matt where to be seen. I think he charged the director for "guest appearences" Like Russel Crow in Superman. "For 3 million, I will show up randomly in your film when you need to insert odd plot holes".

One hour in nothing is happening, and the scenes and dialog are repetitive, so we have allot of scene changes between the secretary, clowns men, and other odd and end turns, to give the film a sense of "movement", but it slows down realll slow when you spend more than 5min on the film. A little past the 1 hour mark we have this horrible introduction of the "Russians". Damion somehow gets tipped off that the RUssians are taking "trophies" or art pieces. So he radios Clowny, and they get all "upset". So, it would have been nice to see how MAtty D found all that out...
Next scene, Russians loading up art, and Matty dealing more uesless dialog: Matty to Secretary: "You know what these means? If Hitler loses all art gets burned! where are they taking the art?! We are here to help"! Why he says that is odd, since it is clear, and she already accepted his help... but oh well, we need conflict, so she says: "Germany"! Well is that a surprise! The Germans are stealing the art to Germany! WoWWww Is the US audience seriously this dumb or is Hollywood really this shitty? I side with the people and blame Hollywood.

64:16 in the film and I am pretty sure they just replaced "emotional WW2 music" with "Carnaval music". And again...We are now at a diner table in a new village talking about "how long where you in Paris?" and family conversation.
I just realized Bill Murray is in this film... He makes a great comedian. Dressed as an old man in a military suit is odd. And he just has a depressed looked on his face the entire time. I seriously think he is bummed he is not the lead man in the Wess Anderson film.

And then it happened. Clowny is wearing Vietnam era glasses. WRong film Cloony...oh what does it matter. 5 min in was false historical information. Give the clown some shades.

All this time in and no art saved, nothing. So action at least? A little 5 min piece where one guy from the team gets shot while in a field. CUT SCENE! No give a prep rally speech Clowny! And insert a bunch of random images and fade in and outs and scene over, back to the boring dialog and re talk about the "saving art plan"...71 Min in.

And of course we can not have a film without one of the boys not seducing a girl. MAtty D dog, in a random cut in scene, suddenly starts forming a relationship with the secretary. Odd because she is cold the entire role, and POOF, she wants the D suddenly...the Matty D.

86 min in, there is this odd scene the crew find a hidden art and gold stash. They invite one of the young guys in who apparently is on the team because he has EU family painters, one of the one of the greats. Clowney tells him to "come here" and they look at the piece "tell your granparents hello"...The kid stares at it like it is a relic...Ok, odd thing is, this film is about to end. They have show a total of abot 2 pieces. And all of them are mini sized in modern frames...Let me say that again. All the art are mini pieces in modern framse. Most of the art they are trying to save, are large pieces that take up half a wall. At smallest, usually medium large.
I can not believe I am seeing this. I guess this is a way to market to Americans "you do not need large pieces". But since this film has nothing to do with art, war, or anything so does not matter.

Dialog still dry and empty. Allot of "come over here, I found something". POsing stupid questions like when one guy opens a box and finds a box of gold: "IS that gold?" "Where are the Germans going?" "To germany"...SImple things for complex situations = this entire film feels shallow. Then, on one scene, now 92 min in. No combat, no nothing...the box of gold is gold teeth. They all look pissed off and take a "mad smoke break" outside the barn. As if they are pissed the Germans took all those teeth. Wait... so you jsut feel "sentimental" all of a sudden? No one has seen combat or knows teh conflict, it is just an "automatic response" you should be programmed to have: "Germans bad. Mercins good".
Because last group of artifact hunters I met, usually dig throughbones, teeth, and are ready to find grousome remains. It is the job, they are acting like first time green backs in some scenes, then emotional battle hardened turds in the other. WHAT HILL IT BE??? IT leaves the film forcing stupid emotions on you that it cannot conjure normally and this also gives it a "preachy" tone to it. There are films, that due the scenes, those emotions come naturally. When we find private Ryan, and Tom Hanks is shot, you feel "oh shit, no, it can't be! he came all this way". 100 min into this film, if Clowny is shot and killed, I would feel 'Thank god I can now leave the theater!"

Funny scene, trying to be funny. Clowny explaining to a German prisoner about the life of New York. And says "When I am there, I Will never have to think of your stupid face"...And then there is a zoom in to Clowny's face, which is equally as stupid! Taking itself to serious = humerous in this film.

Oh god, dat ending. So clown and gang sneak into a russian occupied area in the north and take a statue. They have enemies coming in and and the group tells clown; "Hurry hurry". But they see the statue he is trying to haul out and say "oh shit" and they all slowly help him take it out of this cave. The scene cuts. What enemy was coming? How did they escape? I was thinking " they will have a shoot out behind the articaft and it will magically be saved". But nope, they show NOTHING! Just a cut scene back to the scene from the begening of Clowny giving a speech. Oh wait now, he says "as a prep rally speech: hitler has no right to steal what was not his. Oh, and we gave the Russians something" and they show the Russians looking at a US lag hung over the cave...

Ahh, so then they try and tie in Veteran sympathy as Clownys final speech provokes a guy to ask: "Do you think 30 years from now anyone will remember these mens sacrafice to save this art?" And then cut scene to an old Cloony and his kid at a grave site ina cathedral...where? I Do not know, the film cuts out and it is over. So did Clowny move to France or are they visiting because US does not have Cathedrals...

Final rating; This movie is not an action movie. This movie is not a historical movie. This movie is not interesting. This movie is not educational. This movie does not have anything to do with art, monuments, or the war. This movie is about 3 known actors in the same film to push a directors budget through. Sadly, you will watch it since there are no other WW2 films out right now. A guaranteed reimbursement on their film. Give them shit, and they will eat it up.
Avoid this film if you can. OR watch it...but prepare yourself, your brain will kick you in your skull plates for your 15 dollar movie ticket.

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