Monday, 4 February 2008

National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets Review

It really does make a big difference what kind of mood you are in before you watch a film like this. If you're bemoaning bills, relationships and the threat of Armageddon on our fragile little planet then you could easily take your frustration out on this sequel by numbers. If, however, everything is David Bowieingly Hunky Dory and you want to keep it that way you could do a lot worse than National Treasure 2.

With a Jamie Oliver sized tongue in its cheek we open with a hugely bombastic assasination of President Lincoln. Treasure hunter Ben Gates (Nic Cage on over the top, shouty form) is forced into getting the gang back together to, well, hunt some treasure so that he can prove his Great-Great Granddaddy didn't plot to kill the aforementioned President. Ed Harris joins his The Rock co-star in a similar, 'he's the baddy, but for good reasons role' and Helen Mirren pops to show us old people can be fun too! So far, so stupid.

But, and here is where you'll either love or hate this film, it gets more ridiculous. Instead of covering this lame premise up the film makers throw themselves into it whole heartedly. Taking in Buckingham Palace, Both Statues of Liberty and, in a scene that would usually have me throwing stuff at the screen, The Oval Office. When the lead says "I have to kidnap the President" the only response I could yell out was "Of course you do Benny!".

The likeability of Nic Cage also helps. Whether he's working out the plot in a monologue that encompasses all of history or pretending to be drunk and English he's always having fun and that fun is contagious. In the year of the return of Indy, I do sincerely hope that its Mr. Jones that leaves the lasting impression. But for a fly-by 2 hours National Treasure 2 left me with a few less brain cells and a huge goofy grin.

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