Woman in Gold : $135 million!!!!!

$135 million!!!!!

For one painting! That we wouldn't hang on our wall if you paid us!
God! That was fugly.

Would definitely take the money though!

Know the Death of Religion, Know the Death of Hate and Fear

Re: $135 million!!!!!

I wonder if they put that in the movie: They want the picture back so badly because of it's sentimental value but ended up selling it just one month later. Sounds like they misspelled "money" ;)
And Adele Bloch-Bauer even wrote in her will that she wanted her paintings (there were actually 5)to be given to the museeum.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

I came here wondering that myself. Saw the movie trailer and went to wikipedia to see the story, after how heartfelt they make the movie look I couldn't believe the woman had the gaul to sell the painting only a month or two after getting it!!!

Re: $135 million!!!!!

So (I haven't watched it and don't really intend to), did they show her sell the picture in the movie, or did they cut it before? I'm just curious. I think it must be so damn easy to make these movies where the Germans are always bad and the Jews are holy angels. I'd actually appreciate a movie where the end is less biased towards either of these tropes.

However, I do think it's easier and political correct to just cut the movie and make it end, before she sells the picture that, as it turns out, has no sentimental value to her at all, but simply a monetary one. So which ending was it?

Re: $135 million!!!!!

So Nazis, who killed million of Jews as well as other ethnicities, are not bad? You're a moron.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

I have never said that Nazi crimes were "not bad" (as you put it). I merely stated that the movie probably ended with that woman retrieving her painting and looking all idealistic and fighting for a good cause in the movie, when the actual cause is simply: 135 Million $!!!

I'm saying it is supereasy to make these movies with black and white villains/heroes. There is a difference if someone sells a picture for a lot of money, or if they keep it as a personal reminder of better days.

I haven't watched the movie, which is why I asked when it ends - before or after selling the painting. I actually sympathize with Israel and don't like Arabs a lot. But I also think that stories that pretend to tell a true story should do this to the full extend and not toward a biased ending. The myth of the good Jew is no better than that of the bad Nazi, if you catch my drift. They are both fictional when it lends itself to the plot. It doesn't matter if the story is based on true events or not. The scope of what the story shows is what matters. If she sold the picture in the movie for 135 Million Dollars, it would certainly spoil the happy ending. Great art is usually donated to museums, so that anyone can see it. That's why I don't believe the price in question here was paid by a public museum, but a private collector. Doesn't matter really, a movie like this should arrive at the truth and not at some Hollywoodization of it.

Post deleted

This message has been deleted.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

The attack had nothing to do with “white entitlement”, but rather the race hate of one sorely misguided brute.Most white people would not think of doing what Dylan Roof did.

Erudite, you mention the genocide of the Natives by the Europeans, but say nothing of the Aztecs murderous behavior. Why do you pick-and-choose to moralize? Im mean it was significant enough for the Natives to join the Spanish in crushing the Aztecs.That was the only way they could seeing that the Spaniards only had a few thousand men.

It’s like the how Muslims kvetch about the Crusades, but say nothing about their unprovoked aggressive vs Spain and France 400 years before. Again, hypocrisy.

Why does no one wonder how Muslims got to the Balkans? (Islamic Imperialism) Why does no one talk about the extensive contribution of dark skinned Muslims in the slave trade before, during, and after the Europeans?

Why is it that no one talks about the countless wars and massacres in Europe? Why do people not mention that whites oppressed and brutalized each other long before they came upon the African and Native? If people knew European history they’d be less likely to think the white man is picking on them and more likely to see this as a pattern of behavior based on strength vs weakness.

Too many people overlook the fact that violence on a micro and macro level is as old as humanity itself. Killing is as part of the human condition as sex is. We do it in part because we are programmed to do it and for some, there is enjoyment.(as sick as that sounds)

Progressives have a nasty habit of overlooking or ignoring inconvenient parts of history. They are as every bit as much as narrow as conservatives, but they delude themselves into thinking that they are not. It’s really quite amusing.

Post deleted

This message has been deleted.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

It has always surprised me how people can defend one position and the opposite as it suits them. I am Spanish, and people make a big deal out of having Gibraltar back, but they won't hear of giving Ceuta and Melilla to Morocco.

And it's true - all countries have blood in their hands one way or another. But you can't condemn everybody - I am not responsible for the sins of my parents and I haven't ever killed anybody myself. Probably you haven't killed anybody either, so you don't have blood on your hands either.

You Missed The Point Entirely

There is no blood on my hands, regardless of what my grandparents or their grandparents did.

I am not responsible for Dylan Roof, only Dylan Roof is. I am not responsible for slavery or what American settlers and the US Government did in the past as they colonized this country.

Conversely, no one who wasn't alive at the time of these atrocities is entitled to anything from me.

This movie is about an actual victim of a crime getting restitution from a museum and government that knew full well they were in possession of stolen property. As recently as 1992 the President of Austria was a Nazi. Kurt Waldheim joined the Nazi Party in 1938, the same year Maria and her husband were forced to flee Austria. And he was far from the only holdover from that regime.

We aren't talking about some far off descendants fighting a government where all the perpetrators are long dead.

Re: You Missed The Point Entirely

Hi Bostonmaggie. I saw Woman in Goldover a year ago in the movie theater. You jumped into the middle of a discussion started many months ago. Yes, I understood the legal case regarding the painting. No, I was NOT discussing the movie or war reparations. So relax, no one is coming for your property.

Rather I was responding to an earlier post that had been edited. Primarily I was discussing the moral culpability of a nation's citizens (like the Germans) when they fail to hold their leaders accountable for atrocities committed under the guise of nationalism or national security.

Like many baby boomers, I tend to be a news junky. I watch CSPAN, read multiple newspapers, and pay attention to multiple news outlets. However, I suspect that you read books and articles (blogs) that reconfirm your conservative view; whereas, I read material that explores a wide variety of viewpoints--libertarian, conservative, liberal, and progressive. In political times like these I seek wisdom from my old favorites like Shakespeare or Lewis Carroll or George Orwell. In Orwell's 1984, Winston Smith realizes that the true power to transform his society resides with the proles (the average citizen). Unfortunately, the only thing that Big Brother requires from the proles is a "primative sense of patriotism." Take care, be skeptical, and refuse to engage in the politics of hate and distraction.

"No one forgets the truth, Frank, they just get better at lying."-Richard Yates🔍

I Know Exactly Where I Am In This Discussion

I read every comment in this thread before posting mine.

I read the dates and know the age of the discussion.

You should not make assumptions about what I read and what I don't.

Very Good!

Well said!

Re: $135 million!!!!!

I haven't watched the movie, …

So you're talking out of your a s s Maybe go see the movie before putting forward such ignorant and unsupported comments. Just a thought …

The Movie Makes It Quite Clear

It is made very clear how Mrs. Altman disposes of her paintings.

It is quite telling that without seeing the movie, you assume that the ending leaves the viewer uninformed for the sake of "political correctness".

The point of Mrs. Altmann's actions is not to possess the paintings or sell them or to open her own gallery. Her point is that they do not belong to the museum and should not be in their possession.

Mrs. Altman lost so much at the hands of the Nazis and the complicit Austrian government and non-Jewish Viennese citizens. The paintings were the one tangible thing she could possibly hope to get back. It was justice to take them back.

Would you have been happier if upon taking ownership Mrs. Altman hung them in her little house away from the world??

Post deleted

This message has been deleted.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Something is wrong with my screen. On my screen, it says "the Germans" not "the Nazis"",, totally different thing.. It's okay, it's a common mistake. People still hate on the Germans for what the Nazi party did.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

You make it sound as if the Nazis were invaders from another country or space aliens or something. Nazis were German and Nazism and its acceptance were outgrowths of German culture and history. Many thousands of Germans joined the Nazi party or supported Nazi ideology. And by and large even those Germans who were not themselves Nazis went along with the Nazi regime, supported and fought in the wars that the Nazis pursued, and either stood by silently or collaborated as thousands of their neighbors and fellow citizens were first subjected to discrimination and violence, and later rounded up and taken away forever.

Modern Germany itself has done a reasonable, and at times admirable, job of confronting and accepting this history, and trying to take measures so that it can't happen again. Other countries and people who joined or collaborated with the Nazis, like Austria, have been less forthcoming.

One shouldn't "hate on" modern-day Germans for Nazism and the Germany of their parents, grandparents, etc. and the horrors it wrought. But you also can't whitewash history and say that "the Germans" and "the Nazis" were a "totally different thing", because they clearly were not.

Nothing Wrong With Your Screen

The two words "Nazi" and "German" (those adult Germans alive during this period in history) are largely interchangeable.

Adult German citizens put Hitler in power. They knew what he was doing. They benefited from the actions of Hitler and the Nazi Party.

At the end of World War II civilians all tried to say it was just the Nazis. That they were practically victims themselves. That was nonsense. Sure there were a few who helped Jews and other groups that Hitler targeted, but the vast majority were complicit.

Nothing in this world smells like burning human flesh. You don't mistake it for anything else.

It's similar to all the French who claimed to be in the Resistance.

Or people who claim to have witnessed some great sporting event.

Or people who lie about having fought in a war or all the losers who pretend to have been SEALs or Special Forces.

Post deleted

This message has been deleted.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

The movie discusses her selling it. She said she wanted it on public display, and anyway, it was too big for her bungalow. (And yes, it was already on public display in Austria, and she tried to discuss terms of leaving it there, but the Austrian government would have to admit it was hers and they refused to do that.)

I really enjoyed the movie, Helen Mirren at the top of her game.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Like DancingFan, I saw the painting at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. I've loved Klimt's paintings since the 1980's but I'd never seen any of them "live". When I walked around the corner of the gallery it was in and saw it for the first time, I was blown away, it's stunning to look at. No .jpeg can ever capture that, I was so happy to be able to see it. I later went to Vienna and saw a bunch of Klimt's at various museums, I love his work.

As for the price that OP is so outraged about, I hope you're also outraged that people like the nerd who invented the Minecraft game spent $70 million for a house in Beverly Hills just because he could:


or that a Russian who made his fortune in making fertilizer (!!!) spent $88 million on a condominium --not even a mansion, a freakin' condo-- in New York, which he'll probably re-sell for over $100 million:


because otherwise you're just a hypocrite.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

or all the absurdly overpaid athletes, bankers and CEOs.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

i agree...she tried many times to open the doors of communications to them about the paintings. all they had to do was admit the wrong doing and say they were hers (on loan) and they adamantly refused every single time. people that are complaining about her selling the painting so soon after getting it back...you're totally missing the point. it was on display in a museum, which was what adele wanted, and be honest...where would she have put that size of a painting in her house? it was never about the money...just what was rightfully hers. she got her aunt adele back and in her new home..the usa...i do believe had the austrians not treated her so terribly she would have let them stay in that museum. As for the money...the bulk of it was donated to charities.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

The story here is simple, it was stolen, do it should be returned. What the owner chooses to do with their own property (e.g. Sell it on) is their business. That the Austrian state resisted doing the right thing even after all these years, even in the absolute knowledge of the wrongs done, is not surprising, but it should not be excused or overlooked. The movie is a movie, whether it ends in a way that gives the audience a more satisfying emotional ending, or with one that is closer to the facts is another irrelevance. It's not a documentary. There are two discussions that need to be separated out here. One is that around the rights and wrongs of what actually happened. The other is whether the movie is an accurate if dramatised reflection of the story...the truth.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

You are making shameful judgements on what you yourself admit to be inadequate information. Might want to think that one thru a bit better. I could ask you why so many people apologize for Nazi atrocities, eh?

Darling, nothing is final 'til you're dead, and even then, I'm sure God negotiates.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

"I haven't watched it and don't really intend to"

Which makes any comment you make regarding the movie utterly worthless.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Art is valued not just because of how it looks. But because of the history behind it, or other reasons.

As for her selling the painting....what else is she going to do with it?? Hang it in her small house and pay millions to insure it? The only practical thing to do is sell it. That way she can help out all her friends, charities, and have money for herself. She deserved it; it's her painting. Those stinking Nazi's didn't deserve it. It's a matter of principal.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

"woman had the gaul..."
The word is GALL.

Post deleted

This message has been deleted.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

"Caesar's Conquest of Gaul" by Bob Carruthers. Read it. A little bit of history for you.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Gaul -- that's funny.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

What do you realistically do with a 135 million dollar painting when you live in an LA bungalow? Hang it on the wall? The movie points out that she gave her part of the money to charity and continued to live in her small house.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Excellent point. I realized that too, early on in the film which so many of these judgemental posters have not even SEEN.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

What do you realistically do with a 135 million dollar painting when you live in an LA bungalow? Hang it on the wall? The movie points out that she gave her part of the money to charity and continued to live in her small house.

Exactly. She was very old and it was reasonable for her to decide the 'fate' of the painting after she passes. It really was not about greed, as she used the money for great causes, not the least of which was helping the young lawyer set up a law firm dedicated to cases similar to hers. She continued to run her little shop even after selling the painting. Selling the painting was not so much a business transaction for her personal gain, but more an act to make sure that the painting will be enjoyed by the general public, instead of hanging on a rich collector's private wall.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

you would understand this better if you'd actually seen the movie.

By the way, Gaul is a province northwest of Rome, gall is associated with the bile made by the gall bladder.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Well, think if it.

It did have an internet value listed of 100 million. ( per the movie)
Do you have any idea what the annual insurance is?
I do, b/c my family has some art. It's a lot of $$

Also the piece is OLD and that means fragile.
Why not sell it, get what you can and then you know the painting can be

A.) restored & maintained
B.) do something BIGGER ...and that she did!




Re: $135 million!!!!!

True, but that was decades before the government she wanted the paintings given to aided in the murder of her friends and family

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Adele Bloch-Bauer would have NEVER wanted those paintings in the museum if she knew the circumstances of how they got there.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Adele never owned the painting; her husband, who outlived her by 20 years, commissioned and paid for the painting.

Adele never had the right to will the painting to any entity. Her will, on paper, in her mind when alive or imagined about her death, is an utter irrelevance.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Why bother to comment when you haven't seen the movie?

Why Richard, it profits a man nothing to give his soul for the whole world... but for Wales?

Re: $135 million!!!!!

And Adele Bloch-Bauer even wrote in her will that she wanted her paintings (there were actually 5)to be given to the museeum.

As they say in the movie, do you really think Adele would have still wanted that if she knew what was going to happen to her country and to her family?? You really think she'd donate $135 million dollars to this nation that had pillaged her estate and killed members of her family?

Regardless, the paintings didn't belong to her AND she "left them" specifically to her husband in her will, with the suggestion that he could donate them upon his death.

Even if all they wanted was money -- that was money they had every right to. If someone stole $135 million dollars from you, you wouldn't want it back??? Haha, yeah, fat chance. Not to mention even without the painting, this is money they deserve as reparations for what was done to them during the holocaust. Sadly not everyone gets the money they deserve, but at least one family did.

Pride is not the opposite of shame, but its source. True humility is the antidote to shame.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

It was also quite clear in the epilogue screens at the end that Mrs. Altmann donated all of the proceeds from the sale of the painting to families of victims of the Nazis, to her heirs, and to charity.

Also, a major point in the film (and I assume is historically accurate) was that the paintings did not belong to Adele Bloch-Bauer and were not hers to will to anyone. Klimt's fee was paid by Adele's Uncle, so they belonged to him, legally.

Did you even see the film or check out a Wiki page before posting?

Re: $135 million!!!!!

Just to be clear SteverB, you are quite right that Adele did not own the paintings, but it was her husband Ferdinand who commissioned and owned the paintings of his wife Adele who died in 1925. I am sure you meant to say Maria's uncle Ferdinand. At that time in Austria wives only owned what they brought into a marriage. Both families were well-off. Whether or not Adele could say they were "her" paintings (they were paintings of her)is a mute point since Adele died long before the rise if Nazism and 20 full years before the death of her husband, a broken man who lost everything to the Nazis. The private gold portraits by Klimt were valuable even at the time they were commissioned and paid for by Ferdinand. Some people on these boards seem freaked out by the $135 million figure, but the value of something does not somehow change the ownership. Stolen art is stolen art whether it is worth $135 or $135 million.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

No one said it was about sentimental value. It was about justice. The paintings were stolen. Period. Full stop. The museum in Austria was enjoying the benefits of their popularity. The museum kept them, knowing they were wrong to do so, further victimizing surviving family members.

The point of the family's fight, from the older sister in 1948 to Maria in 1998 forward wasn't that the family possess them, but that the Austrian government should not.

The character, Maria clearly states that she wishes to share them with the world. When she sells her aunt's portrait to Lauder it is with the condition that it be on permanent display.

Who are you to judge how she disposes of her own possessions? That is the point, the paintings are hers.

The movie clearly informs the viewer what happens to the paintings.

At the beginning of her struggle, Altmann offers to leave the paintings whole and with the museum in exchange for written acknowledgement of their provenance and some monetary compensation. But the museum was greedy and overly confident.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

The paintings were not Mrs. Bloch-Bauer's to bequeath. The rightful owner was the person who paid for them, her husband. Further, had it been her legal right to make that bequest to the museum, it would have been negated because the terms of her will were violated. Adele Bloch-Bauer asked her husband, in 1923 to give them upon his death. The paintings were stolen before he died along with every other asset that remained in Austria.

Certainly wills have been challenged on far less compelling cases. A blind person could see that Mrs. Bloch-Bauer would never have wanted to aid the museum had she known how they would treat her husband and other heirs.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

I have read through the threads and pages on this movie and there seems to be two trains of thought. 1. She was a hypocrite for selling the painting when she said that it was not about the money. 2. It was hers to do as she wished and that included selling it.

There are two things that may be a factor in her selling that have not been mentioned.

1. Attorney fees. Her attorney left his job, took out a loan and worked on this full time for several years. Obviously we don't know what his arrangement was, but it did say that he was able to take the proceeds and establish a new practice focusing on recover of stolen items. From what I have seen it is not uncommon for attorneys to charge as much as 30-40% Even if he only charged 10% the price would be 13.5 million, so unless she had a secret bank account she had no choice but to sell.

2. Inheritance tax. Since this case had gone all the way to the US supreme court prior to arbitration in Europe I would be very surprised if the government did not treat this as an inheritance and demand a sizable chunk of the value of the painting.

In the end she would still be very well off, but among the items not recovered would have been the necklace that her aunt gave her as well as the Stradivarius that her father owned. While the necklace could easily have been broken up and cannot be traced I would be surprised if the Stradivarius is not still around. That alone would be worth several more millions.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

I am perpetually baffled by the gross ignorance of those who live to judge. They look for the worst possible motivation for people and then sit on their righteous high horse, believing every word of their own dark imaginations.

There is no way she could have protected or preserved the painting as an individual owner.

Also, what she wanted was for Austria to admit what had happened, and for the right thing to be done.

She had no heirs to whom to leave the painting. She knew the painting would be going to someone who not only loved it but worked hard at assisting many people with art restitution. Her Aunt was being honored.

She gave away most of the money.

There is so much more that goes into a decision like this than just money. But I'm sure you'll continue to see nothing but avarice in her heart. I guess people project their own values on to others.

Movies are IQ tests; the IMDB boards are how people broadcast their score.

Re: $135 million!!!!!

We? Speak for yourself, Oldfart. That painting is beautiful.