BULLSEYE OR MISFIRE: The Monuments Men Reviews
By Dr. Know on February 6th, 2014
At times, this fact-based film feels like a breezy heist flick, while at others it’s a somber tribute to the sacrifices of war. The two tones don’t harmonize, and they never ring true.
Earnest and well-intentioned but ultimately inert, “The Monuments Men” talks a better game than it can deliver.
Despite its intrinsically fascinating subject matter and winning cast, The Monuments Men is no treasure.
Because Mr. Clooney can’t figure out what kind of story this is, he too often slips into pandering mode, including in his own performance, which is filled with too many smiles and speeches.
Alexandre Desplat’s intrusive score keeps telling us what mood we should be in. Moods change from moment to moment, though, and not only in the action sequences.
The humility and devotion of the heroes cannot help but move us and, I hope, inspire us to treasure the masterworks they saved and the heroes who saved them.
A giant mess tonally… It’s as if [Clooney] was caught in two minds as to which kind of movie he wanted to make.
Clooney shows us some of these treasures in intimate detail, imbuing the viewer with the same sense of urgency that the Monuments Men must have felt when trying to rescue them.
The film isn’t a masterpiece, but it’s a fitting tribute to the men who put their lives on the line in the name of saving culture.
Clooney, who’s grown into quite a versatile actor over the past decade, gives himself a role that he could phone in from his living room in Lake Cuomo.
…so plodding, so unfocused, so full of trite lines…nothing but a huge bore.
The Monuments Men positions itself to make a grand commentary on the importance of art and its preservation – and then says little on the topic.
For all of the excitement a true story like this could provide, it’s told with all the enthusiasm of an 8th-grade book report.
Clooney as a director must be faulted here for captaining a production that, for all it’s potential greatness, ends up being a forgettable, boring mess.
The Monuments Men’s mission to protect the world’s priceless art might’ve been interesting if it had actually been explained. Mostly though, we just get “Haha, look at the old guys try to soldier!”
Clooney has certainly created a throwback to old Hollywood war films, which is fine, but almost unsure of his own recipe, throws far too many ingredients into the mix ultimately creating a war film that is indeed enjoyable but suffers an identity crisis.
A Clooney clunker. It’s drab and disjointed with underwritten and underdeveloped characters.