“The Stuff Popcorn Flicks Are Made Of.”
“The Next Indiana Jones Of Treasure Hunting!!!!!!!”
“It Was Good”
“Judging By The Absolutely Packed Theater Last Night, I Have The Feeling That No Matter How Ridiculous The Story Seems, This Thing Will Still Make A Gobs Of Money.”
Cage? Movie star as social studies teacher.
Lisa Schwarzbaum - Entertainment Weekly
With its ludicrous frisson of patriotism and a nod to The Da Vinci Code, a more cynical grab for Hollywood gold is hard to imagine.
Stephen Holden - New York Times
Ten minutes into the picture, you're searching the screen for life-support machines.
Mike Clark - USA Today
The best thing about National Treasure is how clever it is.
Stephen Hunter - Washington Post
One of the more implausible movies in recent memory.
Michael O'Sullivan - Washington Post
A bruising US history class, taught in Dolby Surround.
Wesley Morris - Boston Globe
National Treasure gets more entertaining as the preposterousness rises.
Ed Park - Village Voice
Nicolas Cage usually brims with personality, but you wouldn't know it from this pedestrian ripoff of Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Jami Bernard - New York Daily News
A joyfully convoluted adventure yarn that moves lickety-split through cliches, plot holes and overall narrative mayhem until the whole unlikely rig screeches to a halt.
Amy Biancolli - Houston Chronicle
This one's no treasure. But it features a few interesting baubles.
Philip Wuntch - Dallas Morning News
Laudable, at times inventive.
Lisa Kennedy - Denver Post
National Treasure is so silly that the Monty Python version could use the same screenplay, line for line.
Roger Ebert - Chicago Sun-Times
Alluringly over-the-top without being overcooked.
Allison Benedikt - Chicago Tribune
Treasure may fall a notch below Pirates of the Caribbean on the pleasureometer, but it does give American history sex appeal and celebrates a guy who relies on brainware rather than gadgets.
Carrie Rickey - Philadelphia Inquirer
The lighthearted, rocket-paced adventure doesn't have a shred of plausibility -- and it doesn't pretend to. But it has oodles of fun.
Jeff Strickler - Minneapolis Star Tribune
A formula-action exercise that's part Indiana Jones, part Da Vinci Code, part history trivia lesson and all bluster, Treasure proves quickly that it's fool's gold at best.
Tom Long - Detroit News
Almost every scene in this generic action movie is ripped off from somewhere else.
Bill Muller - Arizona Republic
This long, and long-winded, series of middling cliffhangers won't pump the adrenaline of action aficionados.
Scott Foundas - Variety
Interminable and riddled with plot holes you could drive a humvee through.
Lou Lumenick - New York Post
Cage invests none of the edge, passion or heart we've come to expect from him in the part. Bean has no decent villainous moments, and the rest of the cast (save for Voight) is forgettable and generic.
Roger Moore - Orlando Sentinel
Cage plays Gates way too broadly and crudely; I half expected him to break into his patented Elvis impersonation.
Peter Howell - Toronto Star
National Treasure is not so much a no-brainer as a brain-stunner, so audaciously ridiculous you are initially intrigued, then soon irritated by its incoherence.
Liam Lacey - Globe and Mail
As documents go, this one tastes like cardboard.
Stephanie Zacharek - Salon.com
This infantile excuse for an adventure yarn plays more like a triple-cross between The DaVinci Code, CSI, and The Amazing Race than Raiders of the Lost Ark.
James Berardinelli - ReelViews
An above-average popcorn movie.
Kirk Honeycutt - Hollywood Reporter
Rancid cinematic cheese.
Peter Travers - Rolling Stone
Has all the soul, wit and originality of a major co-branding campaign.
Carina Chocano - Los Angeles Times
Scott A. Mantz - Scott Mantz' Movie Reviews
- Time Out
Historical adventure is a fun romp for tweens and up.
Nell Minow - Common Sense Media
Felix Vasquez Jr. - Cinema Crazed
Devin Faraci - CHUD
Gregory Freitas - Hollywood.com
Urban Cinefile Critics - Urban Cinefile
Joe Lozito - Big Picture Big Sound
Not only safe for Junior and Grandma but also pretty entertaining.
Rob Gonsalves - eFilmCritic.com
Jim Lane - Sacramento News & Review
Turteltaub manages to stitch it all together well enough so that the ludicrous nature of the characters' quest doesn't hit you until the final credits roll.
James Mottram - Film4
It's so completely okay it hurts. It would make a perfect screensaver.
Rob Humanick - Projection Booth
If you can see the film through the eyes of a child -- one who thinks a cheesy thriller is the ideal way to pick up new facts about history -- then this isn't that bad a yarn.
Peter T. Chattaway - Christianity Today
A mild holiday caper, for the wettest of afternoons.
Trevor Johnston - Time Out
Has almost nothing to recommend it (Justin Bartha's performance being the lone high point), not even any gnarly explosions, which doesn't bode well for our man Bruckheimer.
Pete Vonder Haar - Film Threat
The treasure hunt is cool in this DVD, it's a whole game of numbers and quizzes go get to some of the Easter eggs.
Michael Szymanski - Wordmag.com
The film plays on every cliche and every stereotype imaginable, and part of its charm is playing them exactly to an audience's happiest expectations.
John J. Puccio - DVDTown.com
John J. Puccio - Movie Metropolis
The historical touches make the film more akin to classics like "Raiders of the Lost Ark" than to duds like "Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins (and ended simultaneously)".
Wesley Lovell - Oscar Guy
Wesley Lovell - Cinema Sight
A big, overblown wazoo of absurdity.
Christopher Smith - Bangor Daily News (Maine)
This is a bravura film that genuinely understands the nature of true family entertainment and provides it in spades.
Scott Andrews - FilmFocus
This is Bruckheimer's niche. Don't ever expect him to adapt a Nicholas Sparks book into a film any time soon.
Michael Drakulich - Star Newspapers (Chicago, IL)
National Treasure may be dumb and relatively short on action scenes, but it's still a lot of fun, largely thanks to Cage and Bartha.
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
Few can argue that the movie is totally unbelievable, but if one is able to leave all sense of logic at the door, it's very hard not to have a darn good time in the process.
David Keyes - Cinemaphile.org
Stealing the Declaration of Indepenence is easy - making an interesting film is tough!
Tony Toscano - Talking Pictures (U.S.)
This movie couldn't be more stale if it'd been dug up by archaeologists.
Stella Papamichael - BBC
... a semi-historical mystery-thriller... too many chases and cliches keep this good movie from being great.
Kevin A. Ranson - MovieCrypt.com
Works fairly well as slick, enjoyable hooey
in its general approach if not all particulars, this could represent a promising new approach in family entertainment.
Steven D. Greydanus - Decent Films Guide
... a mock-epic assault on the conventional wisdom of American history.
Michael H. Price - Fort Worth Business Press
All of this could have been lots of fun. If only Harrison Ford, or someone just as good, had played Ben.
Shirley Sealy - Film Journal International
It is harmless fun, but it could have been done a lot better.
Robert Roten - Laramie Movie Scope
a passably enjoyable adventure romp
James Kendrick - Q Network Film Desk
[Cage] ust cannot cut it playing an intellectual, and his Ben is convincing only in the scenes where he is evading bullets or hanging by one hand over an abyss.
Anton Bitel - Movie Gazette
That the movie manages to maintain interest and gain occasional involvement is somewhat of a feat considering, although not enough of a feat for it to succeed.
Mark Dujsik - Mark Reviews Movies
As realism, Turtletaub's movie flops. As escapism, though, grab the popcorn, kick your feet up, and have a blast.
David Cornelius - eFilmCritic.com
About as edgy as a child-friendly TV movie.... And despite being at least a half hour too long, it's great fun while it lasts.
Rich Cline - Shadows on the Wall
Strangely, I...found myself liking this movie.
Kamal 'The Diva' Larsuel - 3BlackChicks Review
It's fun and occasionally amusing and it didn't give me a headache. That's not the sort of endorsement that gets you quoted in the ads, but it's the best I can muster.
Eric D. Snider - EricDSnider.com
Susan Tavernetti - Palo Alto Weekly
What's the secret to turning a clever treasure adventure into a humdrum theme-park ride? Here's a clue: Jerry Bruckheimer.
Thomas Delapa - Boulder Weekly
This movie is a fortune wasted.
Robert Abele - L.A. Weekly
Instead of another Raiders of the Lost Ark, we get to watch plunderers of a lost art.
Matt Brunson - Creative Loafing
If The Goonies starred adults, contained a pamphlet's worth of history, drew half the laughs and lacked Sloth and Chunk, it would be National Treasure.
Nick Rogers - State Journal-Register (Springfield, IL)
Who knew the Founding Fathers were cultish Masons hording gold under Wall Street? Perhaps the craziest film ever made by Jerry Bruckheimer.
Jimmy O - Film Snobs
One of the funniest movies of the year. Too bad it's not a comedy.
Mike McGranaghan - Aisle Seat
Imagine eating your favorite sub sandwich; you know exactly what it will taste like, but it's just what you wanted: simple, tasty and satisfying.
Karina Montgomery - Cinerina
So bad on so many levels.
Richard Roeper - Ebert & Roeper
Follow this exciting adventure and thrill to the mystery and chase.
Vince Koehler - Entertainment Spectrum
An awfully contrived and terribly executed adventure, particularly disappointing in that it sports a fascinating story and some decent actors.**
Angela Baldassarre - Sympatico.ca
too preposterous to be believed yet too concerned with historicity to work as an adventure tale.
Sean McBride - Sean the Movie Guy
Every Bruckheimer film is a potential pot of gold and this one is no exception.
Jackie K. Cooper - jackiekcooper.com
It's a fun ride to a boring payoff.
Mark Collette - Tyler Morning Telegraph (Texas)
Jon Voight spends his scenes in unintentionally hilarious rants about how much he hates clues.
Mark Palermo - Coast (Halifax, Nova Scotia)
An underdone pastiche of Raiders of the Lost Ark and a really tedious high school history class.
Marc Savlov - Austin Chronicle
Scott A. Mantz - Entertainment Insiders
'We hold this truth to be self-evident,' said Thomas Jefferson, 'If I had seen this movie first, the only thing I'd have traced on the back of the Declaration is my resume.'
Mark Ramsey - MovieJuice!
Leonard Maltin - Leonard Maltin's Picks
Somewhere between the emulsion and the nitrate of this film there's a map to the Bruckheimer fortune.
Jules Brenner - Cinema Signals
Lacks originality and wit.
Harvey S. Karten - Compuserve
Sure it's dumb, but it's tons of fun and ever so slightly educational.
Eric Lurio - Greenwich Village Gazette
Who knew the Founding Fathers had the time to drop clues throughout the eastern U.S.
Boo Allen - Denton Record Chronicle (TX)
- Boston Phoenix
The movie has less to do with interesting characters or clever plotting than with having the actors scurry from place to place in search of missing treasure.
Daniel M. Kimmel - Worcester Telegram & Gazette
Passable, lightweight entertainment.
Jeff Vice - Deseret News, Salt Lake City
The film's trio of credited writers fails to generate anything in the way of character, and they create the largest and most unwieldy plot holes in a long time.
Jeffrey M. Anderson - Combustible Celluloid
A silly, stupendously artificial enterprise.
Maitland McDonagh - TV Guide's Movie Guide
A dumb movie National Treasure remains, but only the unkindest heart could call it bad.
Rob Vaux - Flipside Movie Emporium
The movie gets a little cheesy (with some definite Raiders of the Lost Ark moments), but it's got humor, a little suspense, and lots of action.
Cherryl Dawson and Leigh Ann Palone - TheMovieChicks.com
A satisfying torrent of chases, escapes and discoveries.
Lawrence Toppman - Charlotte Observer
It has no ambition, little sense and false sentiment, but it does have velocity, high spirits and scale.
Mick LaSalle - San Francisco Chronicle
Isn't likely to be branded as either Bruckheimer's best or worst; but his latest bit of Cage carnage is well-acted, well-directed and full of interesting ideas.
Todd Gilchrist - FilmStew.com
The film is far from perfect, but what do you expect from the director of 3 Ninjas.
Kevin Carr - 7M Pictures
Taken simply as a popcorn flick, National Treasure has its pleasures.
Calvin Wilson - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
The plot is all breathless riffs and jolly twists, and even Cage looks strung-out.
David Elliott - San Diego Union-Tribune
- Baltimore Sun
Despite some preposterous twists, it is a treat to watch a movie with a hero who confronts enemies, threats and clues with wit and insight instead of guns and grenades.
Margaret A. McGurk - Cincinnati Enquirer
National Treasure falls a bit short both as a window into the American past and as crackling good adventure.
Robert Denerstein - Denver Rocky Mountain News
It might feel like a Dan Brown bestseller. But Americans have an appetite for historical mysteries... and capitalizing on that appetite is about as American as you can get.
David Foucher - EDGE Boston
People run. Things blow up. Sometimes, just to add another layer of nuance, people run away as things blow up.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
In trying to maintain a PG rating, director Jon Turtletaub establishes a wavering tone that's at turns raucous, infantile and imbecilic.
Josh Larsen - Sun Publications (Chicago, IL)
Safe, simplistic and stylistically inert film fodder meant only for the least discerning multiplex zombies.
Scott Weinberg - eFilmCritic.com
Hop-scotches up the Eastern seaboard with no real zeal, detouring at historic landmarks like a tour bus on steroids.
Sean O'Connell - Eclipse Magazine
A serviceably entertaining but ultimately forgettable bit of escapism.
Timothy Knight - Reel.com
It's easy to underestimate the value of a popcorn movie that works as well as this, especially if you haven't seen many recent failed attempts.
James Verniere - Boston Herald
An almost tongue-in-cheek fantasy wrapped around well-researched historical details.
Tom Keogh - Seattle Times
Plays a lot better than it sounds. Trust me.
Joe Baltake - Sacramento Bee
Despite its superficiality, National Treasure is undeniably enjoyable.
Robert W. Butler - Kansas City Star
A movie that uses stealing the Declaration of Independence as a starting point? Need I mention that this is a Jerry Bruckheimer production?
Sean Means - Salt Lake Tribune
It's not exactly Raiders of the Lost Ark, but Disney/Touchstone's National Treasure is certainly watchable treasure-hunt hokum.
John Hartl - MSNBC
The best cinematic comfort food you could ask for.
Christopher Kelly - Fort Worth Star-Telegram
The 'North by Northwest' of a new generation it is not, but 'Treasure' provides two hours of easy escapism...
James Sanford - Kalamazoo Gazette
None of this should work, but in the best Bruckheimer tradition, it does.
Bob Strauss - Los Angeles Daily News
With one of the more preposterous climaxes in the history of film, this movie flunks every test of believability.
Tony Medley - tonymedley.com
If Dick Cheney had attempted to write The Da Vinci Code, he might have envisioned something like "National Treasure."
Jon Niccum - Lawrence Journal-World
You think for a minute it might tip the movie toward an ending of real integrity -- you know, like the real treasure being the Declaration itself.
Gary Thompson - Philadelphia Daily News
Christopher Kelly - Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
Though I'd never call the film a treasure, if you don't take it too seriously, it's on a par with most Bruckheimer actioners.
Jack Garner - Journal News (Westchester, NY)
If you're looking for National Treasure to rewrite history, you're wasting your vote.
Terry Lawson - Detroit Free Press
A scavenger hunt conceived in liberty and dedicated to the notion that all Jerry Bruckheimer films are created equal (equally dumb, that is).
Jeffrey Westhoff - Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)
Yeah, it's got a lot of gab in it about unalienable rights, but wouldn't the Declaration of Independence really be something if there were a treasure map on the back?
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Definitely has minor moments of Matterhorn-ride amusement for what's otherwise an insultingly preposterous, culturally barren clump of exploitative, flag-sticker patriotism.
Aaron Hillis - Premiere Magazine
A decidedly less exciting popcorn movie that tries to mix Indiana Jones, The Da Vinci Code and several strands of conspiracy theory in one blandly entertaining package.
M.E. Russell - Oregonian
Watching it is akin to sitting next to someone else hogging the PlayStation controller as he steers a character through a maze in search of clues that lead only to more clues that finally land in a dreary dead end.
Robert Wilonsky - Dallas Observer
Bruce Kirkland - Jam! Movies
A witty comedy caper.
Louis B. Hobson - Jam! Movies
Like an episode of Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? with explosions and car chases.
Josh Bell - Las Vegas Weekly
Secret societies revealed, a quest for the truth and treasure, a hateful bad guy, and a good guy and good girl who share some romance along the way...
Staci Layne Wilson - Fantastica Daily
A National embarrassment.
- E! Online
Sluggish for a Jerry Bruckheimer production, but maybe the kids will learn something.
Gene Seymour - Newsday
A cornucopia of ridiculously over-the-top action, humor, and romance conceived in the Bruckheimer tradition.
Nick Schager - Slant Magazine
This patriotic action-adventure from Walt Disney Pictures isn't worth the hype it's getting, even though its somewhat-historical premise is engaging.
Lindy T. Shepherd - Orlando Weekly
The picture is 25 minutes of fun, spread over 125 minutes.
Bruce Newman - San Jose Mercury News
An impatient, over-plotted caper-mystery populated by undercooked characters, far-fetched contrivances and routine genre twists.
Wade Major - Boxoffice Magazine
Too dumb and improbable.
William Arnold - Seattle Post-Intelligencer
I'm convinced someone wasn't paying attention when the project received a greenlight, so the filmmakers should feel pleased that their movie turned out as passable as it did.
Jeffrey Chen - ReelTalk Movie Reviews
The meat of the movie is like The Da Vinci Code... but this heist makes The Perfect Score look like Ocean's 11
Fred Topel - About.com
It's bad news when a Bruckheimer movie makes one downright nostalgic for The Rock...
Peter Canavese - Groucho Reviews
It's that kind of careful attention to detail that makes something like The Goonies more thrilling and easier to accept than this.
Jon Popick - Planet Sick-Boy
Remove the logical progression of events from The Da Vinci Code and you've got National Treasure.
Rebecca Murray - About.com
This is spreadsheet filmmaking, soulless and overly designed for maximum box-office effect...
MaryAnn Johanson - Flick Filosopher
Unfortunately, it lacks the conviction to embrace its own garish awfulness, resulting in little more than tedious historical and patriotic hokum...
Nathan Rabin - AV Club
We're left with three Oscar nominees, the retard from Gigli and the broad who launched a thousand ships in Troy being pursued by the FBI and logic bringing up the rear.
Erik Childress - eFilmCritic.com
A radical adventure it is, with Nicolas Cage strapping on the hero boots to solve clues, dodge bullets and dangle off of underground wooden structures.
Phil Villarreal - Arizona Daily Star
On the heals of the very popular adventure novel, The Da Vinci Code (by Dan Brown), "National Treasure" takes many elements of that book (intentional or not, you decide)
Robin Clifford - Reeling Reviews
It fakes high concept, but turns into a whole lot of hooey.
Bob Townsend - Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The clever bits are swamped by no-brainer gunfights, rescues, and chases galore.
David Sterritt - Christian Science Monitor
As vanilla a filmmaker as they make 'em, Turteltaub's filmography doesn't exactly inspire the greatest confidence that he can handle a monster-budgeted action/adventure.
Brian Orndorf - FilmJerk.com
Fluffy, frenetic and sometimes downright farcical, National Treasure makes gleeful fun of itself while leading us popcorn-munching escapists down a tangled, painless adventure trail.
Bob Ross - Tampa Tribune
Keep this one buried.
Dan Lybarger - eFilmCritic.com
This is one screenplay that would have excelled had all the dialogue been excised or retooled.
Dustin Putman - DustinPutman.com
A rip-roaring, high-spirited American adventure, it's one of the best scavenger hunts to come along in ages!
Susan Granger - Modamag.com
This would be fun if director Jon Turteltaub didn't move things along at a snail's pace.
Larry Ratliff - San Antonio Express-News
Despite an interesting premise and a decent cast, the movie swings randomly between too much explanation and not enough, between simplistic cliche and inscrutable babble.
Gemma Tarlach - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
When the effects seem more real than the characters, the quest, and, especially, the jokes, even an overstuffed movie like this one just feels empty.
Nell Minow - Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
From the very first action scene in the frozen Arctic, to a chase up the Liberty Bell tower, to the climax in a tunnel deep below New York City, National Treasure takes you on an exhilarating ride.
Tracy Allerton - South Florida Sun-Sentinel
It's everything you loved about The Da Vinci Code, stripped of its religious context and transposed to early America.
Peter Debruge - Miami Herald
All it is, really, is astonishingly boring, terribly stupid, and, it bears repeating, boring. It's boring. (Also stupid.)
Walter Chaw - Film Freak Central
An adventure zipped up with a light smattering of history.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) - St. Paul Pioneer Press
National Treasure is a wildly inventive thinking person's Raiders of the Lost Ark film.
Emily Blunt - Blunt Review
Despite the release date, "National Treasure" is a summer movie all the way...but in a drama-heavy fall season, it has perfect timing for adventure fans.
Jeffrey Lyles - Gazette (MD)
While clues abound in National Treasure, I was left clueless.
Victoria Alexander - Movie Reviews in Croatian
While it may be blasphemous to recommend 'National Treasure', it's probably not far off the mark to say [it will] keep fanatical fans of high-tech hesit movies content.
Anthony Del Valle - Las Vegas Mercury
Doesn't this movie's plot sound like some educational movie that's supposed to trick kids into learning because they made a game of it?
Willie Waffle - WaffleMovies.com
falls short in many ways, not the least of which is a ridiculously moronic plot that defies reason at every turn
Robert Strohmeyer - Filmcritic.com
...may well have the most asinine plot in the history of cinema.
Rob Blackwelder - SPLICEDWire
As a family-friendly adventure, the film undoubtedly excels - though it's clear the movie could've used a little less adventure and a little more sleuthing.
David Nusair - Reel Film Reviews
This goofy, good-natured dry run for The Da Vinci Code is almost well-meaning enough to compensate for its countless problems.
Sean Burns - Philadelphia Weekly
It's pretty preposterous and a little too long but kind of fun.
Steve Rhodes - Internet Reviews
One scavenger hunt that's definitely not worth playing...it has more climaxes than a porno movie.
Frank Swietek - One Guy's Opinion
Cage . . . all but sleepwalks through the film with an expression and body language that could be the result of his jockeys being just a scooch binding
Andrea Chase - Killer Movie Reviews
An exciting little adventure movie differentiating itself from the pack by focusing more on its string of clues than it does on setting up the next big piece of stunt work.
Joshua Tyler - Charleston City Paper