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NATIONAL TREASURE Collector's Edition
DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 131 minutes, deleted scenes and opening animatic with optional director commentary, featurettes, new deleted scenes, 4 new featurettes, trailer for the sequel
VIDEO: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)
AUDIO: English, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Surround
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish

STUDIO: Disney/ Jerry Bruckheimer Productions/ saturn Films
RELEASE DATE: 12-18-2007

Note: this review is a modified review of the one disc to include a review on the new CE extras.

ANALYSIS: Treasure hunting has been a long standing story for movies and books. As in real life, people are fascinated with fictional tales about treasure hunters and their quest against all odds to find it.

Nicolas Cage is Benjamin Franklin Gates. Ben has spent his entire life searching for a treasure that the Founding Fathers hidden and they have left clues to where the treasure is located. One of the clues is located on the back of the Declaration of Independence. Ben must steal the Declaration before his nemesis (Sean Bean) can steal it and find the treasure. The race is on as Ben must decipher the clues and stay ahead of his enemy and the FBI who want him for stealing the Declaration of Independence.

NATIONAL TREASURE is an action adventure movie in the spirit of Indiana Jones mixed with the style of a Jerry Bruckheimer movie. Nicolas Cage and the other members of the cast give good performances. Nice use of putting real locations into the movie. History is blended with fiction to give an enjoyable ride.

PECIAL FEATURES: The alternate ending is interesting, but the only deleted scene that really pops out is the extended Shaft sequence. I wish they hadn't cut it down. Also you can see an animatic of the opening sequence for the movie. All deleted scenes and the animatic come with optional audio commentary by the director.

NATIONAL TREASURE ON LOCATION is the weakest featurette on the disc. The more interesting featurettes can be found when you crack the 2nd bonus level. TREASURE HUNTERS REVEALED is the best featurette on the disc. It tells the tales of real treasure hunters and their quest to uncover history to find the treasure. THE KNIGHTS TEMPLAR look into the history of the Templar Knights. Riley's Decode This is one part featurette on ancient languages and codes with games to demonstrate some of them. After the cracking the Master Code, you are treated to an extended list of the Bonus features or a menu showing a Trivia Track for the movie you can turn on. Added to the first dic for the CE are new trailers including one for the sequel- NATIONAL TREASURE: BOOK OF SECRETS (the first sequel theatrical trailer and not the second one).

Disc 2 features over five minutes of new deleted scenes which most were thankfully cut (with introductions and optional audio commentary with the director).

Four new featurettes are also included-
Three cover more behind-the-scenes stuff on the making of NATIONAL TREASURE while a featurette on Codes and Cryptography (featuring interviews with experts and author of The CODE BOOK, Simon Singh) proves to the be the most interesting. The new extras are nice if you don't already own the film on DVD and the lack oF a feature audiio commentary or movie cash for the sequel (some stores may offer free movie cash) makes this DVD lacking as a double dip.

FINAL ANALYSIS: The new extras are nice if you don't already own the film on DVD and the lack oF a feature audiio commentary or movie cash for the sequel (some stores may offer free movie cash) makes NATIONAL TREASURE Collector's Edition lacking as a double dip.

this DVD review is (c)12-15-2007 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com  

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