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National Treasure thrilling but no Da Vinci Code

by Shelly Awaya, News editor


Movie goers are in for a thrill ride filled with action and adventure as Nicolas Cage searches our great nation and the rest of the world for a hidden fortune.

Cage (Gone in 60 Seconds and Adaptation) stars as Benjamin Franklin Gates in National Treasure, a movie produced by Jerry Bruckheimer (Armageddon and Pirates of the Caribbean) and directed by Jon Turteltaub (Phenomenon and While You Were Sleeping).


Gates is a third-generation descendent of Revolutionary-era patriots whose destiny is to recover “the greatest treasure the world has ever known.” This treasure was collected over many centuries and was moved from continent to continent to keep it safe, until it got into the hands of our Founding Fathers.

According to Gates family tradition, the Founding Fathers of the United States of America hid the treasure in case of financial hardship during the Revolutionary War.

A self-proclaimed “treasure protector,” Gates has spent his whole life searching for it, despite disbelievers who say it is only a myth. Fortunately, the Founding Fathers left clues to the treasure’s whereabouts: in our nation’s capitol, in the all-seeing eye and unfinished pyramid on the back of the U.S. dollar bill.

Throughout the generations, the Gates family gathered lots of clues, all of which lead Benjamin Franklin Gates to the back of the Declaration of Independence, where a supposed “secret message” in the form of a map lies.

But, what Gates thought was the final clue to the treasure is only the beginning of his journey.
Once the information of the map is uncovered, Gates must protect the Declaration from his greedy rival, Ian Howe (Sean Bean). To do so, Gates plots the unimaginable: steal the most-guarded document in America before it falls into the wrong hands.

With the Declaration of Independence in tote, Gates must dodge authorities and keep one step ahead of Howe in order to find the remaining clues and unlock the mystery of the National Treasure.

“ I’ll definitely go see the movie just because Nicolas Cage is in it,” said Amber Vega, a fourth year HPU student double majoring in journalism and visual communications. “I loved him in Raising Arizona,” she added with a laugh.

On the other hand, Chad Blair, political science instructor at HPU, said it seems to be a typical run-of-the-mill flick that was made simply for profit. “Jerry Bruckheimer’s movies are shameless entertainment,” Blair said. “Even though it sounds like a cool action movie, I think the bottom line of National Treasure is to cash in on people who won’t pay much attention to the American history behind it. It really has no educational value.”

For more information about National Treasure, students can take an interactive tour through, where they will find exciting links to the movie trailer, cast bios, movie photos, and a game where they can enter the serial number from a $1 bill to see if they can win a $100 Visa gift card.

The movie is rated PG and opens nationwide on Friday, Nov. 19.


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