We watched this from Redbox on May 24.
Yet another movie I was really looking forward to seeing, but was disappointed. It wasn’t terrible, but it was like an attempt at a noble documentary. I think it would have been better as a documentary.
As far as the storyline, I had no idea that Hitler amassed such a monumental collection of the world’s masterpieces while conquering Europe. When I initially saw the trailer for the movie, I thought it would be an interesting flick of war intrigue. To my horror, about half way through I kept fiddling with the stop button on my TV wanting to escape.
I cannot put my finger on any one thing as to why this movie doesn’t work. Since George Clooney and Matt Damon star in the film, maybe I was hoping for a WWII version of Oceans 11 where the gang steals back valuable artwork from the bad guys. All the actors are people who’s work I enjoy. These are great actors, but mediocre performances, likely because the screenplay just didn’t give anyone any great scenes. But that could be cause the work itself, while vitally important, just wasn’t that exciting.
The film lacks conflict and intrigue. Nothing really kept me on the edge of my seat. The only thing that did ruffle my feathers were the Germans stealing, stashing,and destroying the masterpieces from great artists.
Of course, there are undertones of more being destroyed than art. There is the terrible confiscation of Jewish property, even down to barrels full of gold fillings taken from the mouths of victims. It is a sobering reminder that more than art had been lost during the war, and perhaps we should care about human lives rather than a Rembrandt.
Nevertheless, it is true that our greatest achievements as human beings should be preserved. Hitler wanted to conquer more than land and human beings, he wanted to conquer and own all of the art created by master artists of centuries past. Two men gave up their lives to preserve and reclaim the artwork. The only question left for the audience to ponder, is whether the price of a human life is worth the preservation of a Rembrandt.