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Byron Shire
May 23, 2024

The Monuments Men

Latest News

Kinship Festival returns Saturday 25 May to Murwillumbah

The Kinship Festival – a free North Coast cultural festival led by First Nations people – will be held in Knox Park, Murwillumbah on Saturday, 25 May.

Other News

St Helena Tunnel, Ewingsdale – changed overnight traffic conditions 

Essential maintenance at the St Helena Tunnel will be carried out overnight on the Pacific Motorway at Ewingsdale from Monday, 27 May.

National Volunteer Week honouring locals who give back

Tweed Shire Council will use National Volunteer Week to celebrate the significant contribution volunteers make across the Tweed, and to spotlight those who selflessly give back to the community.

Police appeal again to locate man missing from Mullumbimby

Police are again appealing for public assistance to locate Gage Wilson, a man missing from Mullumbimby, since Saturday, 18 May.

Outdoor pickleball courts for Alstonville

Alstonville now boasts tournament-standard pickleball courts that opened to an enthusiastic crowd and players earlier this month. The eight new...

Shh – it’s Secret Bridesmaid’s Business

It is the very eve of Meg’s wedding – her mother is fussing over every detail and her best friends are doing little to help. The wedding is the gala event that Meg has dreamed of since she was a girl and one that has taken far too long to come true. But, anything that can go wrong does until the veil is lifted on an unhappy secret, and Meg’s dream is rocked by a revelation she doesn’t want to be true.

Goonellabah Skate Park overhaul to start next week

New ‘skate elements’ to be introduced have reportedly been designed by skatepark specialists Trinity Skateparks, with input from ‘local enthusiasts’.

Of the current crop, George Clooney is one of the very few actors who might comfortably carry the old epithet of matinee idol.

Handsome in a ‘golden years of Hollywood’ way and equally adept at romantic comedy as drama (a crossover too challenging for most), he can hold a movie together through his mere participation in it.

Matt Damon, more earthy and earnest than glamorous, has a similarly weighty screen presence.

It is just as well for the high-minded but curiously under-achieving film The Monuments Men, that both men are involved, for without them its lack of drive, of any mounting tension might have proved terminal.

As director and co-writer (he and Grant Heslov’s script feels patchy, under-worked), Clooney has attempted what many would baulk at – a discourse on high art and its essential, timeless value to society in a vehicle designed for a mainstream, mass audience that might otherwise not give two figs for Jan van Eyck’s magnificent Ghent Altarpiece.

It is a terrific story – while trashing Europe, the Nazis were looting the great paintings and statuary of the countries they overran with the idea of housing them in Hitler’s planned Fuhrer Museum.

An elite squad of citizen soldiers under the command of Frank Stokes (Clooney) was sent to Europe after the D-Day invasion to find and recover as many of the works that they could.

The sets, costumes and cinematography are first rate (there’s a beautiful nocturnal shot of a bi-plane flying over Paris) but there are too many disconnected scenes that fail to merge into a compelling whole.

The temperature of Damon’s romance with the French secretary (Cate Blanchett) never rises above tepid, the jousting buddy gags between John Goodman and Bob Ballaban fall flat and Bill Murray, apart from having a tooth hilariously extracted, is completely out of place – I wanted more of the charismatic Jean Dujardin.

Poignant in parts, but generally flat, Clooney is to be applauded at least for challenging the prevailing mindset that knows the price of everything but the value of nothing.

~ John Campbell


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St Helena Tunnel, Ewingsdale – changed overnight traffic conditions 

Essential maintenance at the St Helena Tunnel will be carried out overnight on the Pacific Motorway at Ewingsdale from Monday, 27 May.

First Nations job seekers in Casino foot in the door to career

Trying to find something you might be interested in doing is always a challenge and local Casino barber Michael Day has come on board to help Aboriginal job seekers the chance to kick start a career in the hair and beauty industry.

Primary care nurses supported in community

Health services, particularly GP services, have been stretched over recent years and new funding to support nurses and build their capability as primary care...

Goonellabah Skate Park overhaul to start next week

New ‘skate elements’ to be introduced have reportedly been designed by skatepark specialists Trinity Skateparks, with input from ‘local enthusiasts’.