National Treasure: Book of Secrets

The Movie Snob sounds off.

National Treasure: Book of Secrets (C). On the plus side, this is a perfectly nice adventure story with no strong violence or profanity that I can recall. It’s like Indiana Jones-lite. I would guess that 11- and 12-year olds might really like it (if you can pry them away from their video games long enough). And the cast is remarkable, including Jon Voight (Midnight Cowboy), Helen Mirren (The Queen), Ed Harris (Apollo 13), and Harvey Keitel (Pulp Fiction), in addition to star Nicolas Cage (Valley Girl). I cannot resist quoting Roger Ebert: “You could start with a cast like that and make one of the greatest movies of all time, which is not what happened here.” I beg to differ as to N. Cage, whom I have never liked, and who looks increasingly bizarre as he ages. Diane Kruger (Troy) is pretty but insubstantial, and she and Cage generate about as much heat as two passing icebergs. The “couple’s” final words are a striking commentary on what passes for romance three decades into the sexual revolution: having survived some hair-raising adventures (in which Cage’s character willingly risks a horrible death to save Kruger’s life) and having discovered a fabulous mythical artifact—she invites him to move (back) in with her. And you thought Gone With the Wind and Casablanca were romantic! I would feel guilty giving it worse than a C, because it was somewhat entertaining in its ridiculousness, and because there is something to be said for a movie that delivers exactly what you expect. Still, a little more would have been nice.

I liked her better as Helen of Troy.


5 comments on “National Treasure: Book of Secrets

  1. […] Apprentice  (C).  This is a perfectly disposable fantasy adventure starring Nicholas Cage (National Treasure: Book of Secrets) as good sorcerer Balthazar and that ubernerd Jay Baruchel (How to Train Your Dragon) as his […]

  2. […] her husband of being a spy. He is joined by several others–a hard-bitten American (Ed Harris, National Treasure: Book of Secrets), a Russian thief (Colin Farrell, Ondine), and a few more. Along the way they are joined by a […]

  3. […] to the original series. (For example, the assured presence of Christopher Pike (Bruce Greenwood, National Treasure: Book of Secrets).) And the young actors and actresses who take the helm are generally well cast and do a fine job. […]

  4. […] resist quoting another line from the book, which I have quoted before.  In Ebert’s review of National Treasure: Book of Secrets, he lists off several members of the cast, which included Jon Voight, Helen Mirren, Ed Harris, and […]

  5. […] movie features a very young Ricky Schroder (TV’s NYPD Blue), a middle-aged Jon Voight (National Treasure: Book of Secrets), and a still very good looking Faye Dunaway (Bonnie and Clyde). The plot centers around a […]

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