In ‘Monuments Men,’ battling Adolf Hitler, art thief

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Where’s the art? That’s the mystery that propels the plot of “The Monuments Men,” a WWII drama about a ragtag team of curators in uniform searching for Nazi troves of stolen paintings and statuary. Sadly, it’s also the question bedeviling the movie itself.

How can this be? George Clooney has proved he can direct and write as well as act, and the cast seems bulletproof: Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, and that’s for starters. It’s a great story, and much of it’s true. The movie should work like a pip. Instead, “The Monuments Men” is a labored mishmash of tones: Half “Hogan’s Post-Doctoral Heroes,” half “Saving Private Rembrandt,” and half “Ingres’s 11.” That’s three halves, so you can see the problem.

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