(2015) (Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds) (PG-13)
- QUICK TAKE:
- Drama: A young American lawyer tries to help an elderly woman regain her family's valuable and famous paintings from an Austrian museum where they've hung for decades after Nazis stole them during WWII.
- It's 1998, and following the death of her sister, Los Angeles resident and shopkeeper Maria Altmann (HELEN MIRREN) inquires with a friend about that woman's son, Randy Schoenberg (RYAN REYNOLDS). He's a lawyer -- married to Pam (KATIE HOLMES) and with a young child -- who tried running his own firm but is now working for a bigger firm and his immediate boss, Sherman (CHARLES DANCE). Maria is interested in hiring Randy -- despite his inexperience in the matter -- since her homeland of Austria has started restitution for property seized by the Nazis during WWII.
Then, Maria (TATIANA MASLANY) was just a 21-year-old, newly married to Fritz (MAX IRONS), and having grown up in a prosperous Jewish household in Vienna filled with artwork including a portrait of her aunt, Adele Bloch-Bauer (ANTJE TRAUE), who earlier died at the age of 25. But the Nazis then took over Vienna in 1938, subjected the Jewish population to horrible atrocities, and seized most of their belongings, including that portrait of Adele. Now known as "Lady in Gold," it hangs in a prominent art museum and is to Austria what the Mona Lisa is to France.
With the help of local investigative reporter Hubertus Czernin (DANIEL BRUHL), Randy and Maria try pleading her case to the Austrian restitution committee to have that work and others returned to her, but to no avail. While Maria concedes that defeat, Randy -- whose grandparents knew Maria's family and lost their lives in a concentration camp -- returns home a changed man, determined to make things right. From that point on, he tries to figure out a way to help Maria win back her family heirlooms and regain some of her long-lost dignity.
- WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
- Some older teens might, especially if they're intrigued by the true story.
- WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
- For some thematic elements and brief strong language.
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