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Monuments Men - Matt Damon News Column
Monuments Men
  • A new poster for Monuments Men is available at Screen Crush.

  • Matt is currently in Chennai, India, for water.org
  • 42 comments or Leave a comment
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 25th, 2013 06:46 am (UTC) (Link)
    Just saw Elysium and I really enjoyed it. Certainly incredibly violent, sometimes unnecessarily so, but still a good watch.

    I'm surprised not many interviewers are asking Matt about his time in Vancouver, and his thoughts on the city. I guess because he hasn't been interviewed by many Canadian publications....and it maybe doesn't make as crazy a headline as the Mexican dump!

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 25th, 2013 07:30 am (UTC) (Link)

    Elysium and India visit

    I was also surprised at the lack of Vancouver questions. Considering how much time they spent filming there the majority of the film seemed to take place in Mexico. But Matt did have a lot of time off in Vancouver. Interesting to see where the Vancouver set photos appeared (and there were virtually no surprises in locations after following the film shoot). The Mexican dump also ended up looking like it could have been filmed in a studio.

    The film will do OK, but certainly won't make its money back in the US (Matt claims it was made for $85 or $90 million, the press reports claim about $115 million). It would likely have been more successful if it was a better movie with a more interesting or clever last third of the film, instead of a cliched action sequence with unnecessary violence that was spoiled in the trailers. Matt sold it the best he could, but I think most people feel it's an average movie with a poor ending. (And yes, as said previously in a comment, Matt should probably care a lot more about a script and less about a promising but unproven director).
    Photos of Matt and Chris Moore at Pondicherry airport, India.

    Edited at 2013-08-25 07:46 am (UTC)
    loganx2 From: loganx2 Date: August 25th, 2013 11:57 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    It doesnt have anything to do with being an unproven director. I mean look at the Clint movies both bad scripts. It's funny that Matt keeps talking about how Ben got into trouble with movies by saying he knew how to fix them and Matt seems to be doing the same thing, thinking a good director can fix a bad script. It really does surprise me that Matt cant see bad scripts or chooses to do bad scripts because he thinks the director can fix them. I have been a fan of Matt's since the Rainmaker but if you look at his career he hasnt ever been good at picking good scripts. He got really lucky that the Bourne movies were such a big hit. I love that Matt doesnt do Transformer/2 guns type crappy movies, but is doing a smart crappy movie any different than doing a stupid crappy movie?

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 25th, 2013 12:37 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    Agreed. Matt always says you have to trust the director once you sign on, which probably means not challenging them to fix their own scripts. And Elysium wasn't even that smart.

    I'm not trying to be difficult or pessimistic in this thread, just honest, but Matt could also hold a lot stronger to his beliefs in the movies he selects, such as use of guns, treatment of women and children and unnecessary and gratuitous violence. Elysium had all of these elements which could have been treated differently if the writer adopted a more creative approach (a sick child in peril, really?)

    (I've started watching 'Murder, she wrote' because of you and it's a lot of fun. Early Bill Maher!)

    Sorry - of course it's not Chris Moore but Gary White with Matt in the photos linked above at the airport.

    Edited at 2013-08-25 01:07 pm (UTC)
    loganx2 From: loganx2 Date: August 25th, 2013 01:21 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    I hated the "sick child" element. It was so cliche and not needed at all for the movie. and if if you are going to have an anti hero like Max then let him be an anti hero maybe since it was Matt Damon all american they needed to redeem him but I would have liked it (and i didnt hate the movie) a lot more if he had remained more selfish with his actions.

    Im not trying to be negative either although I refuse to just say things are good when I dont think they are. I used to look forward to Matt's movies now I go in with caution. He is still one of the only actors I will always pay to see on opening weekend though.

    (and yay for murder she wrote. I love that show so much. I used to watch it with my grandmother and now it is just one of my guilty pleasures. it's fun seeing the guest stars)

    Reo Roma From: Reo Roma Date: August 27th, 2013 09:37 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    I love Matt Damon's movies because even if the script isn't that strong he still manages to pull it off perfectly I guess that's why he's a mega star :) Oh I didn't like that much 'the sick child element' either so tired of that but I did love Matt's character in the Elysium.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 25th, 2013 07:01 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    I'm not trying to be difficult either, but it's only honest to point out that Bourne had plenty of guns, too, and I don't remember nobody here having an issue with that. Saying guns are OK in a great movie and not OK in a not-so-great movie (which I still thought was entertaining) is unfair. And anyway, Matt has never taken a public stand against guns publicly that I am aware of. To my knowledge he's only stated that he's personally uncomfortable around the real thing, which I think is true of most people. That hardly makes him a hypocrite.

    And what was wrong with the movie's treatment of women and children? Braga's part may have been underwritten but so was Matt's and he still managed to give the character shading and some depth. The flashbacks were a bit mawkish but a more sensitive directorial hand could have made them really effective.

    The problems with this movie all go back to the director (such as uneven performances and editing) and we can hardly blame Matt for that. As he has said, it's a director's medium.

    And just to put things in perspective let's not forget that Matt was also in Behind the Candelabra this year, giving probably one of his greatest performances. It was a fantastic and unique movie, and only expanded his already amazing range. But it couldn't even get RELEASED as a film in America, because it's not aimed at thirteen year-old boys. Before we can honestly reflect on the quality of his choices, we would have to know what his range of options are. The fact is, it was probably this or do some lame superhero movie, like Ben.

    He's also in Monuments Men, which looks likely to be quite good. Batting .750 is a great average in anybody's ballpark (sorry for the baseball analogy). In other words, two out of three ain't bad!

    And, I'll say again, although far from perfect, I still thought it was entertaining.

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 25th, 2013 09:49 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    I don't really care about the guns, and Matt hasn't made anti-gun comments, but why does the weapon of the future have to be a really large gun? It's a sci-fi, do something more interesting.

    I'm not knocking all his choices, but most of his more interesting roles in recent years have come through friendships via Soderbergh, George, Coens. Which is fine, and probably how most deals in the industry are done.

    Edited at 2013-08-25 09:49 pm (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 26th, 2013 12:29 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    Please ignore the grammatically horrific "I don't remember nobody..." Lol! Please believe my grammar isn't that bad! Ha, ha. I need to learn to proof my writing. :-)
    Please forgive
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 26th, 2013 12:52 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    Reminds me of the scene "Dodge this" in the Matrix. If you're talking about the large gun with "Chem Rail" written on the side, I think it has a symbolic meaning. Actually I remember Matt saying in one of the Elysium interviews that all the details (even the colours chosen represent something much more than just any old prop for a movie set). For example the Monuments Men poster in green - you can choose for yourself whether they're just all dressed that way accordingly to the colours worn or whether those colours chosen have a deeper meaning. My interpretation of Chem Rail is about the Jews sent on the train to their deaths in the Holocaust. There is a good quote in the trailer of the Dalai Lama Renaissance documentary (with Harrison Ford) about what trains are going by now right now that we are just watching go by. People working in the dump in Mexico all their lives (while drug lords live like kings taking advantage that those drugs have not been legalized) is just one example. Matt's work with Water.org has addressed many other problems. My brother said he didn't like the Messianic theme of Elysium. He's a fan of the Bourne movies and would be happy if Matt would entertain him in a return to being Jason Bourne. Personally I think entertainment is ignorance -- welcome to Elysium (the scene of those on Elysium having a pool party while the rest of the people on Earth suffer). I like how the movie has a humanitarian theme (call that political or messianic, whatever) and is being promoted as entertainment. I am happy Elysium, has brought the reality of this world to light and I personally recommend seeing the movie. M..
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 26th, 2013 04:28 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    Thank you for your interesting comments, M. I think we have similar feelings on the matter. That's an arresting quote from the Dalai Lama. I'm not familiar with that documentary. I'll keep an eye out for it.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 27th, 2013 04:48 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Elysium and India visit

    Unfortunately for all of us who love Matt Damon there are not that many intelligent films being made that have great scripts and Matt and his family still need to eat!!! From reading many of his recent interviews I get a feeling that he didn't want to miss out on what he viewed as something big like he did with Avatar as I heard him say a few times that when he met Neil Blomkamp he had a book with his own drawings and he had great visuals on how the movie should look just as James Cameron had had with Avatar. Elysium was an entertaining movie although too violent and with a cliched, simplistic ending. I was expecting it to be violent/gory after recently watching District 9 to see what Blomkamp's style was like. I absolutely love the Bourne trilogy but I don't think Matt should do another Bourne movie. I think it should be left alone now - anyone else remember Harrison Ford in the fourth Indiana Jones movie?? I know Matt hasn't always been in movies that have been my 'cup of tea' but he always tries to choose interesting and varied characters. I'm really looking forward to Monuments Men which I think his fans will like a little more than some of his other recent movies.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 26th, 2013 02:28 am (UTC) (Link)


    Retiring UK film critic Philip French:

    >> Will any current actors have the impact of Marlon Brando or Robert De Niro?
    Ryan Gosling has a presence with which he can command a film. I think “Only God Forgives” you could say is a Ryan Gosling film – he really is what holds your attention. I think Matt Damon is a wonderful actor. If you look at him he looks like someone who has just been signed up for a team of Irish-American builders and yet he has an extraordinary charisma and also, he hasn't got the mannerisms of a star: he's an actor without ego. The other person who has gone from being a juvenile to a serious actor is Leonardo DiCaprio, particularly in the films in which he's collaborated with Martin Scorsese.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 26th, 2013 02:30 am (UTC) (Link)


    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 26th, 2013 12:15 pm (UTC) (Link)


    Matt's travels around India continue - spotted at Movenpick Hotel and Spa Bangalore:

    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 26th, 2013 01:43 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Bangalore

    Is he still in India? The caption for the pic above suggests he was there but no longer. Since he was spotted at airport with Gary Moore thought he was on his way back.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 26th, 2013 09:19 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Bangalore, Bourne

    No, I think that was just for an internal transfer (and a very small plane).

    Just saw another sighting of Matt at Mumbai airport heading for a BA plane, so it looks like he's coming back to London.

    Bourne rumors debunked by Variety:

    There's a debate about whether the rumor was denied too quickly:

    Matt receiving environmental award for water.org:

    Edited at 2013-08-27 02:43 am (UTC)
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 27th, 2013 03:16 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Bangalore,

    And a photo of Matt at Bangalore airport (probably taken yesterday before the trip to Mumbai):

    The previous celeb visitor to the airport was MS Dhoni, for the cricket fans. Cities visited by Matt appear to have been Chennai - Puducherry - Bangalore - Mumbai.

    Lucy and girls out with Ben's family:



    Matt's in London on the way back to LA (he's no longer going to Deauville).

    The Us Weekly article via JenGarner.net

    Edited at 2013-08-27 08:58 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 27th, 2013 12:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Bangalore,

    In regards to the US Weekly article about Jennifer inviting a bunch of moms over to get to know Lucy. It comes off as Jen being very vanilla to Lucy's more wilder side. I mean Lucy is the one who suggested tattoos to Matt and she comes from the party scene in Miami and has no qualms about showing off cleavage at events. So to think that Jennifer and Lucy are like two peas in a pod is very unlikely.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: August 26th, 2013 05:10 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Quote about MM characters

    Saw this quote over at Clooney's open house. It seems to be a link/translation from a European paper but I can't access the link on my device.

    The real names of monuments men have been changed. "To have more freedom to do less perfect and idealized characters," explains Clooney, who plays Frank Stokes, aka George Stout, chief curator of the Fogg Museum at Harvard. This was the true leader of the network, a remarkable man. But for dramatic reasons, I assigned some flaws. "Matt Damon, meanwhile, is James Granger, inspired by James Rorimer, curator at the Metropolitan Museum in New York. "I consider myself well versed on the history of World War II, says the actor, encased in a deliberately ill-fitting uniform. But I knew nothing of the monuments men before George asked me to be part of the project. What I learned I was fascinated. "

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: August 27th, 2013 09:57 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Quote about MM characters

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