National Treasure - Press Archive - Reviews

For an excellent selection of reviews, please visit Rotten Tomatoes.
Thanks to Mae for all her help in sending me copies of reviews.
Meanwhile, here's a selection of critics' opinions of Sean's role:
Bean gives the film's standout performance as the menacing Howe, who will
do anything to keep Gates out of his way. He's a focused and resourceful
villain that never becomes unnecessarily violent, yet remains a worthy
opponent in every way.
- GW Hatchet 18 November 2004
Cage fits the bill as the quick-witted, smart and well-intentioned treasure hunter
who has devoted his life to solving the mystery. He's joined by a humorous
sidekick (Justin Bartha of Gigli) and a beauty-with-brains from the National
Archives (Diane Kruger of Troy) to thwart a hiss-worthy foe (Sean Bean,
Boromir in the Lord of the Rings trilogy). They're all after the Declaration
of Independence.
- Palo Alto online 19 November 2004
Sean Bean, as the villainous Ian Howe, is a perfect Machiavelli and the rest of his
supporting cast of henchmen are kind enough to speak in various foreign accents
so everyone watching the movie can identify the bad guys instantly.
- Tufts Daily 18 November 2004
Of course, Sean Bean plays the evil treasure hunter whose only motivation is
greed. We know where that got him in The Lord of the Rings.
- BB spot 19 November 2004
Sean Bean is a great import who doesn’t typically star in the best of films (other
than “The Fellowship of the Ring”), but he still usually stands out.
- Echo online 19 November 2004
Nicolas Cage plays an amateur historian who believes that Thomas Jefferson and
other Freemason framers had a giant hoard of ancient treasure that they needed
to hide from the British, so they stashed it and left clues in invisible ink on the
back of the Declaration of Independence. He believes it, and so does a ruthless
millionaire bad guy (Sean Bean, still coveting gold rings), a Euro thug who wants
the map and wouldn't mind destroying the Declaration in the process.
- Philadelphia Daily News 19 November 2004
As the stock villain -- the rival who wants the treasure purely out of greed -- the
filmmakers also make it interesting. Sean Bean (Boromir in The Lord of the Rings)
massages the role and turns it into something as complex as Cage's leading man.
So the two become worthy antagonists.
- Winnipeg Sun 19 November 2004
He has been searching for clues to the fortune since he was a kid and, with the
help of a likable wise-cracker (Justin Bartha, the developmentally disabled kid
from "Gigli") and a less-likable historian (Diane Kruger), he is about to find it.
Unless a multinational group of villains, led by the inevitably villainous Sean
Bean, gets there first.
- St. Paul Pioneer Press 19 November 2004
Ben has been working with the adventurer/financier Ian Howe (Bean, ever the
handsome-but-vicious villain), when a falling-out turns Ian into a psychopathic
- Daytona Beach News-Journal 19 November 2004
Sean Bean rounds out the major cast as Ian Howe. As usual, he makes a great bad
- Coming
Bartha strikes the proper note of nerdy introspection, and Bean is his usual sinister
- St Louis Post Dispatch 19 November 2004
Sean Bean delivers the expected gloom and doom a la Goldeneye. He begins the film
as a teammate-an interesting twist.
- Digitally Obsessed
Throw in a rogue colleague (Lord of the Rings alum Sean Bean, looking suspiciously
like Queer Eye’s Carson Kressley) and a sympathetic, buxom federal employee
(Diane Kruger, still recovering from Troy), and you’ve got a recipe for general-
purpose action-adventure, Bruckheimer-style. Think of it Raiders of the National
- Detroit Metro Times 24 November 2004
Clues are passed from generation to generation in Gates' family, with Cage finally
having the means to track down the most concrete one, having gotten the
backing of a rich Brit (Sean Bean, cornering the market on evil European types).
- Brock Press
Too bad he has to steal the Declaration to complete the search. That instantly
sets an implacable federal investigator (Harvey Keitel, doing what he does easily)
and a Richard Branson-ish, but evil, British business magnate (Sean Bean, ditto)
hot on his heels.
- Sun Herald 25 November 04
The only solid performance is by Sean Bean who made a career out of playing the villain.
- Jamaica Observer 25 November 04
We don’t see enough of Sean Bean in “National Treasure” but, as usual, he’s good at
playing the bad guy.
- Romantic Movies 18 November 24


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