The Monuments Men

George Clooney, Matt Damon, and Bill Murray

In 1943, American professor, Frank Stokes, recruits a team of art experts to go behind enemy lines to recover artwork stolen by and about to be destroyed by the Nazis. They soon learn that working in a museum does not prepare one for the horrors of war.

SUNDAY, MAY 27TH | 10PM ET

The Monuments Men

George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, and Cate Blanchett star in a World War II movie unlike any other!

In 1943, American professor, Frank Stokes, approaches President Franklin D. Roosevelt with an unusual proposition. It’s clear the allied forces are making progress in Italy. However, as the Nazis continue their rampage, they confiscate valuable artworks during their occupation of Europe’s historic cities—valuable, not only monetarily, but also culturally. Frank posits that the heritage of many countries will be lost if someone doesn’t take the works back, and return them to the countries from which they were stolen, and that even a victory over brutal dictators will lose some of its meaning if the artistic treasures that represent the history of western civilization are lost. He wants to go behind enemy lines and lead the charge.

With FDR’s consent, Frank recruits a unit of museum directors, curators, art historians, and an architect, who together with allied forces, would hunt down stolen art and return it to the collectors, museums, and individuals, who are the rightful owners. Frank’s unit becomes known as “The Monuments Men,” and he soon discovers that “art” is not high on the list of priorities among allied officers, who are not willing to risk their men’s lives for a sculpture or painting.

Nor are Frank and his men trusted to do as they say they will. French curator, Claire Simone, who watched Nazi officer Viktor Stahl, pack up her gallery’s entire collection and haul it into a truck bound for Germany, refuses to assist Frank, as she believes they just want the masterpieces to bring back to The United States.

Getting little accomplished as a unit, the men split up and target different geographic areas, each encountering obstacles, gunfights, injuries, and successes. As the war wears on, and the Nazis suffer defeats, Claire learns of a decree that states all the confiscated works of art are to be destroyed if Hitler is killed or Germany loses the war. When she sees one of Frank’s men return a painting to a home, she realizes Frank’s intentions are honest, and she has a change of heart about helping the unit.

Now the clock is ticking. One Nazi Colonel has already begun demolishing large caches of art. With the allies closing in on Hitler, the mission of The Monuments Men becomes even more dangerous.