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Monuments Men – the people who saved the world’s artefacts from Hitler?

Posted By Matthew On November 7, 2012 @ 9:14 am In British Museum,Similar cases | 4 Comments

Monuments Men was originally a book by Robert M. Edsel, soon to be made into a film [1] by George Clooney.

The story is based around people at various museums, who during the second world war did anything in their power to protect as many of their artefacts as possible from potential seizure by the Nazis. Now, in its own way, this is admirable behaviour – although I think a distinction needs to be made between protecting the artefacts – and just not wanting someone else to have them – thus enriching their culture rather than your own. Many of the items that were “protected” were removed from other countries in times of war – and these earlier removals were seen as entirely acceptable, while at the same time, we tried to stop the same thing from happening to them again. Many times, the excuse has been given for the removal of items such as the Parthenon Marbles, that had the British not takes them, Napoleon would have. Looking at it another way though, is this different from walking past a shop that has the door open at night & robbing it before someone else does, rather than closing the door & helping to secure it?

I’m sure that most of the monuments men had entirely admirable intentions – I just have trouble reconciling some of their behaviour & the reasoning behind it, with that of their predecessors – that the same action by one person can be right, when it is wrong by another.

From:
Get The Big Picture [2]

Monday, October 29, 2012 at 7:06AM
Some Dude Named Clooney Snags Steve Zissou & Galadriel for Next Movie

Say what you will about George Clooney (and I really don’t have anything negative to say about the guy), but he has a pretty good eye when it comes to picking projects, be it for acting or directing. I’m a fan of the movies he’s directed (especially Confessions of a Dangerous Mind). He’s not flashy, workman like I would say, but outside of Leatherheads, the guy has delivered. His next project might be another win for the Cloonster and he’s bringing Bill Murray & Cate Blanchett along for the ride.

The movie is called Monuments Men (based on a book of the same name by Robert Edsel) and while it’s another movie set during World War II, this one has a really interesting premise:

At the same time Adolf Hitler was attempting to take over the western world, his armies were methodically seeking and hoarding the finest art treasures in Europe. The Fuehrer had begun cataloguing the art he planned to collect as well as the art he would destroy: “degenerate” works he despised. In a race against time, behind enemy lines, often unarmed, a special force of American and British museum directors, curators, art historians, and others, called the Momuments Men, risked their lives scouring Europe to prevent the destruction of thousands of years of culture. Focusing on the eleven-month period between D-Day and V-E Day, this fascinating account follows six Monuments Men and their impossible mission to save the world’s great art from the Nazis.

The movie was announced back in January, but now with Murray and Blanchett coming on board (though it wasn’t stated what roles they would be taking on), the movie will probably start moving towards a principal photography start date real soon. Oh, and Clooney is going to co-star in the movie as well…take that Ben Affleck!

Maybe he’ll shoot this in black & white. I’d be down for that. I am also down for a movie directed by George Clooney starring Bill Murray and Cate Blanchett…take that Ben Affleck!


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URLs in this post:

[1] soon to be made into a film: http://www.elginism.com/similar-cases/george-clooneys-new-film-highlights-the-issue-of-looted-nazi-art/20120328/4169/

[2] Get The Big Picture: http://www.getthebigpicture.net/blog/2012/10/29/some-dude-named-clooney-snags-steve-zissou-galadriel-for-nex.html

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