National Treasure

Release Date: November 19, 2004

Wow, did I really look that awful in Adaptation?

On the Big Board
Position Staff In Brief
73/126 Kim Hollis Entertaining formula film.
80/133 Dan Krovich Decent mindless fun

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Stuck in development hell for years, the latest film from director Jon Turteltaub and King Midas himself, Jerry Bruckheimer, is slated to hit theaters this Thanksgiving.

Nicholas Cage is Ben Franklin Gates, an archaeologist and modern day treasure hunter whose entire family line has been devoted to finding a treasure hidden somewhere in colonial America by George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin. The treasure's (intended to be used as funds for the Revolutionary War) location may be somewhere in the words of the Constitution or perhaps on the back of the Declaration of Independence. Other cast include Bean as a British treasure hunter also after the Presidential stash and soon-to-be-really-famous Kruger (Troy) as the world's most attractive museum curator and token love interest.

With a primo release date, the name power of Cage and Bruckheimer and an original story by Turteltaub, the stage seems set for one of the biggest hits of the year. But we do have to keep in mind that the script for this film went through a ridiculous number of screenwriters before finally being written by Cormac and Marianne Wibberley, who are responsible for classics such as The Sixth Day, I Spy, Bad Boys II and Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle. And while Turteltaub is a capable director, he can turn the cheese factor to 11 when he wants.

And while it's a good bet Kruger will be 2004's Keira Knightley, the only known quantity other than Cage is Sean Bean (The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring.

In short, National Treasure is another Bruckheimer smash on paper, but a lot of it's business is riding on its quality. (Tim Briody/BOP)

Vital statistics for National Treasure
Main Cast Nicolas Cage, Justin Bartha, Sean Bean, Diane Kruger
Director Jon Turteltaub
Screenwriter Ted Elliott, Terry Rossio
Distributor Touchstone Pictures
Trailer Click Here for Trailer
Official Site
Rating PG
Running Time 130 minutes
Screen Count 3,017
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture

Comparison films for National Treasure
Adjusted Opening
Total BO
Adjusted Total
Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl 7/11/0346.63 46.63 3269 14264.00 14264.0 305.41 305.41 0.00
Mummy, The 5/7/9943.37 51.68 3210 13511.00 15425.9 155.25 185.01 3.58
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade * 5/26/8937.03 55.96 2327 15913.00 23131.7 197.17 297.98 5.06



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