Today we’re talking about the 2004 movie National Treasure.
Take the feel of Indiana Jones, the brilliant yet socially awkward Sherlock, twist it with a dash of Ocean’s 11, and spray it down with American history. That’s what this movie tries to do.
The clues are interesting but impossible for the audience to guess in advance, the history is flimsy at best and the plot is only a reason to go from one set piece to another. They should have made the entire movie about the heist, that part was fun and interesting.
Nicolas Cage is doing a bad impression of a jerk intellectual. The girl occasionally remembers that she’s supposed to be intelligent even if she forgets to have any agency. Their romance is awkward and kinda uncomfortable to watch between the rudeness and the complete lack of consent.
The quippy sidekick is enjoyable and Sean Bean does a great job playing an intelligent villain.
The dialogue is forgettable and heavy with history lessons that aren’t believable even if they are real. It doesn’t make me want to go find out more like the Doctor Who historical episodes always do.
Visuals and Music
There are some beautiful scenes and the music is just memorable enough to remember. Both could have been much better but were acceptable. The framing was a little obvious and the music was a little too much on the nose for my taste.
I loved this movie when it came out. It has not aged well for me. It’s okay if you turn off your brain but there are some things in it that make my mystery/puzzle solving mind very angry. Masons specialized in stone… why did they build their treasure trove entrance in wood? Time of day for a shadow is meaningless without time of the year.
The heist was fun and there were a few moments I enjoyed but mostly I wished I was watching a better movie or one that didn’t take itself so seriously.
This movies isn’t terrible but it’s not good. I’m going to happily not watch it again unless I have to. If you want to watch something in the genre watch an Ocean’s movie, Indiana Jones, The Librarian, or maybe a Bond film.
Final Score: 1.5 Stars