Movie Review: THE MONUMENTS MEN and THE LEGO MOVIE - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Terry's Take

Movie Review: THE MONUMENTS MEN and THE LEGO MOVIE

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THE MONUMENTS MEN is based on the true story of seven World War II art experts whose mission was to find and protect millions of art works stolen by the Nazis.

It's a great subject for a movie, but the result is only mildly entertaining.

George Clooney to his men: You can wipe out a generation of people. You can burn their homes to the ground yet somehow they'll still come back. But if you destroy their achievements, their history, then it's like they never existed.

Clooney co-wrote, directs, and stars in this muddled, disappointing drama about the heroic work of a small group of art experts who tracked down much of the art stolen by Hitler's troops during world war ii.

I expected to like this movie, because it's got a great cast and a really important subject.

But the film tries to cover too much and it veers from comedy to tragedy and back again.  The only character whose story grabbed me was the French art curator played by Cate Blanchett. She is slow to trust the American (Matt Damon) who needs her help. She thinks he too might be trying to steal the art.

If you want to see the real story of how so much great art was recovered, you should check out a 2006 documentary on Netflix called THE RAPE OF EUROPA.

THE LEGO MOVIE is a clever and very funny feature length animation based on the interlocking plastic brick construction toys that kids have been playing with for over 50 years. The film offers an infectious pop song called "Everything is awesome" that you may have trouble getting out of your head.

Emmett: Ah, here it is. (grabs a book from a shelf): Instructions to fit in, have everybody like you and always be happy…greet the day smiling and say "good morning, city"… shave your face, brush your teeth, comb your hair, wear clothes, (stumbles out the door without getting dressed) Oops, almost forgot that one.

Chris Pratt heads a terrific cast of voice talent in the role of Emmet, an  ordinary builder in the Lego world who is mistaken for "the Special," a master builder who is supposed to save the world from the destructive intentions of "Lord Business" played by Will Ferrell and his henchman played by Liam Neeson.
 
Bad Cop: Take him to the melding chamber.
Emmet: Isn't there supposed to also be a good cop?
(Bad cop's head swivels to reveal good cop): Hi buddy. would you like a glass of water?
Emmet: Yeah, actually.
(Cop's head swivels again to reveal bad cop): Too bad!

THE LEGO MOVIE is full of clever lines spoken by miniature characters ranging from Abe Lincoln to Batman.

Batman (as he helps build a submarine out of Lego blocks): I only work in black and sometimes in very dark gray.

THE LEGO MOVIE is a family film, but I'm betting adults will like it even more than kids do.
   
Terry Hunter, Hawaii News Now                thunter@hawaiinewsnow.com