It's the best PG movie I've seen since Goonies. It's better than Flight of the Navigator. This is the family film that captured all of the thought and heart that the Incredibles lacked. It's a rich, timely and considered tale. It's our story, and it transcends the suspect acting of Helen from Troy, the grating side-kick, and the historical fudging they introduced to make the plot almost consistent.
I'm impressed with Disney. They aren't going to get a fifth of the accolades they deserve for this particular film. It's not A Lion in Winter, but it's worth three times every other movie I've seen this year, and I shed tears at some of the strangest places.
They didn't get. The critics also didn't get, "The Life of David Gale," and while that movie was definitely not PG, it was a fine and thoughtful movie.
National Treasure is a heavyweight film that passes itself off as a regular PG movie. The only difference between National Treasure and all of the bad movies National Treasure is going to be lumped with is the considerations of Gates. If you pay attention to what Gates is paying attention to, and the awe and humility with which he makes his decisions, you see that his understanding is impressively deep and honest. It's awesome. This movie isn't about a treasure. It isn't about clues. If you focus on Gates, you'll see it's about being.
Maybe nobody in the world is going to like it but me, but I think I'm right. My only nagging wish is that someone, someone would have read an astronomy book, but I'm willing to create an excuse for this film. People are going to say that it's like The Da Vinci Code, but this movie isn't about the chase.
Forget the clues. Forget the Treasure. Pay attention to Gates.
Irami, I'm really surprised you liked this movie so much. It was a decent thriller, but certainly nothing to rave about.
The movie showed signs of heavy editing, particularly towards the beginning. I get the feeling that the script had quite a bit more about Gates' relationship with his father and grandfather, how the Charlotte was discovered, and Gates' lifelong drive to investigate the mystery. But because the movie was running long, they threw together a poorly-written first scene so they could get straight to the explosions and shooting. Which is fine, if you came to see explosions. I turned my brain off for a bit, and had a good time.
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First, if you were paying attention to clues, you weren't paying attention to the story.
Second, if you are going to pay attention to the clues, pay attention to the clues.
1) Lemon Juice was the activating agent, it wasn't the ink.
2) It didn't come over with Columbus. Columbus didn't make it to New England. It came over slowly with the English.
3) It doesn't matter.
4) The treasure includes Alexander the Great's conquests.
You don't get to nit-pick the movie, if you aren't going to pay attention. In the clues, there were holes large enough to drive a Spanish galleon through, but the ones you listed weren't them.
But all of this doesn't matter because the story was about Gates, and by extension, Gates' relationship with his father, the girl, and his legacy. Everything else was extraneous.
Gates is a wonderful character, thoughtful, aware, responsible, attuned to and humble in the face of his duty. He was deeply, thoughtfully moral, and he put all that he was at stake. Gates had a real nobility and that's not an easy character to draw.
I liked "The Life of David Gale." I thought that it was under-appreciated, but maybe I missed something which made it bad.
*Ahem* The previews beg to differ... (Note, I did say I refuse to see it.)
1. Oh really, they desicrate one of the most important documents in american history... with lemon juice, to test his theory. Um... and if he was wrong he would get some pretty hefty things thrown at him for that. (Plus, if I'm not mistaken, they didn't even have invisible ink then)
2. Previews say it first came over with columbus...
3. Um... Sure it does, that would mean that the pyramid on the back of the one dollar bill has no inscription to help find it.
4. *Twitches* But, that doesn't excuse that if it were a 'national treasure' then it would stay in the nation!
Really? I can see it getting pitched pretty easily.
"Think The DaVinci Code starring Indiana Jones, except it's Nic Cage, right? OK, this guy is a treasure hunter, or part of a secret society maybe, and he's racing to get to this huge treasure before an opposing evil group gets to it, and the map is on the most secure document in the world, so to get to it and protect it before the evil guys do this guy has to steal the Declaration of Independence!"
Easy pitch to grab studio execs attention. The DaVinci Code is white hot, Nicolas Cage and Jerry Bruckheimer bring in the bucks, big adventure movie with a brain in the fall when there's no blockbuster competition. Why not?
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I expected "The Life of David Gale" to be better. However, the acting and dialog was stilted and odd. When it comes to death penalty films, "Dead Man Walking" beats all.
"National Treasure," as others have said, looks too far-fetched to be enjoyable. And, besides, it's Nicolas Cage, who's fantastic in movies like "Adaptation" but irritating when he takes on the action/adventure stuff.
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I saw National Treasure Friday and I have to say it was not so hot. Aside from the premise being pretty unbelievable (which is not a problem in itself), the whole thing just isn't pulled off very well at all. It comes across as a fairly cheesy attempt to stick a bunch of American landmarks into an adventure film - and you pretty much can guess how the plot will progress. It might have worked if the characters were more compelling, but they aren't. They've got the comic relief character who isn't that funny, the love interest whose motivations seem contrived, and Nicholas Cage as the main character himself, who might be the best of the three but still seems like he's a guy acting, rather than a real character. And really, I don't think the movie is about that character.... They don't give much insight into his thinking or feelings as a character. Really, it's a movie about solving a mystery and about celebrating American history.
I think it's entertaining, but nothing that will stand out above other movies this year. I don't see how it could be said to be even in the same league as The Incredibles as far as heart and thought goes.
From what I've heard, the Da Vinci Code is already in pre-production with Robert Zemeckis directing and....yep. You guessed it. Tom Hanks on the cast list.
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I liked National Treasure for all of the important things it got right, and it screwed up elements that I don't care about.
There aren't too many characters who have those thoughtful sensibilities and hesitations I attribute to a hero. Gates is one of them. And as a bonus, he has these sensibilities and he isn't some guy in a war.
Usually when you have protagonist with these considerations it's because it's a war movie. I don't like watching people kill or die, so I get tired of war movies quickly. But there is something about a war that forces people to decided that is important and what is not. The problem is that soldiers don't always make the deepest, most informed decisions.
In addition, nobody's life was in danger. This wasn't like Speed or Die Hard, where someone's life was always in play. And it wasn't like Indiana Jones or Tomb Raider where they just have some weird fetish for old things.
Gates was a true believer. He is a serious moral agent who acts out of respect for the thoughts of the Founding Fathers.
quote:Really, it's a movie about solving a mystery and about celebrating American history.
Maybe, but they did something right about the way this treasure and why it was hidden had formed his life. With most other action adventure movies, the hunters are more involved with finding the treasure than the thought of the people who hid it. This was different.
As an aside, M. Night Shyamalan movies usually show a depth of thought, but most people go in to see if they can figure out the twist at the end. If you spend the whole movie trying to figure out the twist at the end, you'll probably miss a decent story. National Treasure is similar.
I liked it. It does require suspension of disbelief, but I'm pretty good at that. Vadon, without seeing the movie, your arguements are meaningless. If you don't want to see it, fine, but how can you argue the points when you don't know how they are explained?
Although I do disagree that Gates was acting out of respect for the wishes of the founding fathers. They hid it. They wanted it hidden. The last one who knew the secret told someone about it on his deathbed, and that's supposed to overrule the wishes of everyone who made the decision to hide it? And it wouldn't have been in danger of being found by the bad guys if Gates hadn't been searching for it in the first place. But then there wouldn't have been a movie, and I like the movie, so whatever.
My son loved this movie. He's never been this excited about a movie or more thrilled after having seen it. I'd never seen him like that.
Yes, the plot is unbelievable. However, so was the plot of Armageddon, but I liked that just fine. I think the timing of the release of this movie is off. This is Oscar movie season and this movie is a summer blockbuster movie. It was released at the wrong time of year.
It's campy in the way Armageddon was and if you just let the :rollyoureyes: plot holes wash over you, you'll have a good time. Yeah, it's not the best movie ever, but it was fun. Like Indiana Jones. Remember the first time that came out in theaters? If you were excited when you saw that movie, you'll like this movie. It's like Raiders of the Lost Arc Jr.
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At first, it seemed like one of those guilty pleasure-type movies that I'd secretly see and not tell anyone about. Then I saw it for free at a sneak preview a couple weeks ago.
My highlights - Sean Bean, a couple of the one-liners, and leaving the theatre.
More to come on this later; I'm off to see Finding Neverland...
Edit to continue:
I couldn't really buy Nic Cage as an action-type hero. Never have been able to do so, either. And man alive, some of the connections his character made were beyond even my twisted chain of thought.
The end was crap. I am all for "willing suspension of disbelief," but the end of this movie went far beyond my ability to "suspend" anything, including my laughter. I won't say too much more, other than to reiterate that it's entirely unbelievable. And to answer a question posed by one of the characters, no, it's not possible.
Um, what else? Oh, the good things. I love Sean Bean every time he plays a bad guy (because that's all he seems to do...), and even though he was blond in the movie, I enjoyed his participation. Some of the one-liners were hilarious; "Is she pregnant?" comes to mind immediately.
The comments about the movie I heard while leaving the theatre were also quite entertaining. Most centered on the fact that they'd seen the movie before, except with rats, snakes, and a whip added. Yes, the fact that the movie was almost a remake of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade crossed more minds than just mine during our sneak preview.
Final opinion: Almost fun to see, not good at all. 3 out of a possible 8.