Inglorious art bastards

“There is no must in art because art is free,” painter Wassily Kandinsky once said.

In the recently released movie “The Monuments Men,” starring George Clooney, Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon and Bill Murray, amongst other stars, artists and lovers of art must fight the will of the Nazis in order to preserve the freedom of Europe’s classic art.

This film is recommended for anyone interested in history or art. In the second world war, life and victory were the first priority, while art and culture were an afterthought. This film reflects that sentiment. While “Schindler’s List” and “Saving Private Ryan” addressed the main concerns of the war, “The Monuments Men” may, in time, join that list of great WWII movies for addressing those secondary, yet vital aspects.

The movie was acrobatic. It tiptoed on the lines of humor and emotion skillfully. It was funny, but not to the point of disrespect, and still kept its depth.

The versatility of actors like Clooney, Murray and John Goodman allowed the film to switch moods with ease.

Stylistically, it felt like a throwback Hollywood film, but without being limited to Hollywood sets. The European backdrops are beautiful. The score of orchestral American tunes gave the movie an unmistakably nostalgic feel.

Those looking for action like in a “Saving Private Ryan” may find the movie slow. Although the film isn’t without its fair share of flying bullets, there is something bigger than guns and bombs here.

About 70 years after this war that reshaped the entire world, history is still trying to put the pieces together. It was finally time for this part of the story to be told.

Of course the world knows of horrors of the Holocaust. This film expands the scope of that evil just a bit further. It was even more than the murder of millions of people; it was an attempt to take over and relabel and bastardize a whole culture, generation and history.

On the American side, it feels good to know that a few guys from the red, white and blue stood up for a selfless and noble cause.

Ultimately, it may not be the greatest WWII story ever told, but with a roster of premium actors, a fresh historical perspective and good intentions, this movie has a lot going for it.