The Monuments Men

The Monuments Men ★★

In more ways than one, The Monuments Men feels like a gay re-imagining of Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds. The jaunty, strangely flamboyant tale fails to inject any inherent sense of urgency or sincerity, and is thus unworthy of any devotion or empathy; The film is unable to emulate the seriousness of it's own topic, and at times it feels like the actors themselves have a hard time buying into their roles. The beginning of the film has Clooney's character trying to persuade President Roosevelt (and the audience) why he should care about art, when it's unclear whether he's even persuaded himself. Of the films many shortcomings, the most detrimental is Clooney's failure to present the art in the film with any sense of inter-subjective value, or aura. The veteran cast of actors, with their charisma and subtle humour, is unable to fill this giant void, and the result is a film that is unable to capture your attention, let alone ask for your sympathy.