National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets DVD Review

I did not see National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets in the theaters. So this DVD was my first exposure to the film. Never the less I had quite a bit of Deja-Vu as I watched the movie. Large sections of the first half of this film play just like the first film.

I have to wonder if that is by design. Since the first film was so popular, why deviate too much from the formula. So even with, perhaps because of, this formula, the second film was as enjoyable as the first. The second half of Book of Secrets, where they deviated the most from the first film, managed a few surprises and some some great moments.

There are plenty of reasons to add this DVD to your collection. The collection of actors assembled were all wonderful. The story of the “Gates” family as they travel through history continues to be interesting. Interesting enough that I’d be happy to see one more film documenting their next adventure.

As for the DVD itself, the special features are treasures themselves. I enjoyed the audio commentary, even though I would have liked to have a voice from the technical side of the production in the booth. Deleted Scenes and Bloopers were fun to watch and the featurettes provided insight in the making of.

The full press release and DVD details are below the cut

National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets
Available on DVD, Two-Disc Gold Collector’s Edition DVD and Blu-ray Disc on May 20, 2008

BURBANK, Calif., February 15, 2008 – Walt Disney Pictures and legendary action producer Jerry Bruckheimer (Pirates of the Caribbean) present a spectacular, star-studded race across the globe when National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets comes to DVD, two-disc Gold Collection DVD and Blu-ray Disc on May 20, 2008 from Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment.

The missing pages of a diary hold a secret so explosive it could change the course of history in National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets. An irresistible blend of historical fact and fiction, the high-voltage adventure stars Academy Award© winner Nicolas Cage (Best Actor; Leaving Las Vegas, 1996) as Benjamin Franklin Gates, treasure hunter extraordinaire. A search to uncover the truth behind the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, is packed with breathtaking stunts, awe-inspiring backdrops and a lightning-paced international treasure hunt.

Oscar© winners Jon Voight (Best Actor, 1979; Coming Home) and Helen Mirren (Best Actress, The Queen, 2007) head up an extraordinary supporting cast that also includes Oscar nominees Ed Harris (Best Actor, Pollock, 2001; and Best Supporting Actor; The Hours, 2003; The Truman Show 1999 and Apollo 13, 1996) and Harvey Keitel, (Best Supporting Actor, Bugsy, 1992) as well as rising stars Diane Kruger (Troy) and Justin Bartha (National Treasure). The film is directed by Jon Turteltaub, who also directed the blockbuster original.

The Two-Disc Gold Collector’s Edition Contains The Following Bonus Features on DVD and Blu-ray -Disc Gold Collector’s Edition Contains The Following Bonus Features on DVD and Blu-ray


Audio Commentary -Director Jon Turteltaub and Academy award winning actor Jon Voight provide exclusive commentary for the film.

Deleted Scenes -Jon Turteltaub introduces extended and deleted scenes including “Pursuit At Rushmore: The Unseen Chapter,” in which the intrepid group of treasure hunters makes its way into the Black Hills of South Dakota while doing their best to avoid the FBI.

The Treasure Reel -A collection of outtakes and bloopers from the set of National Treasure: Book of Secrets.

Secrets of a Sequel -Filmmakers Jon Turteltaub and Jerry Bruckheimer join the cast and crew to talk about making the follow-up to the phenomenally successful National Treasure.

The Book of Secrets: On Location -From the Black Hills and Badlands of South Dakota to London’s historic Buckingham Palace, National Treasure: Book of Secrets was given unprecedented access to previously off limits locations. Go behind the scenes at the Library of Congress, Mount Vernon, Buckingham Palace and the Statue of Liberty in Paris.

Street Stunts: Creating the London Chase -Take a high speed tour of London’s most recognizable landmarks as the film’s unforgettable adrenaline-fueled chase scene is created in historic city streets.

Inside the Library of Congress -An informative feature about the workings of the nation’s most important library provides an up-close look at precious national artifacts and the conservation techniques that safeguard these priceless pieces of American history.

Underground Action -The sets, the stunts and the action that create the film’s powerful climax as the race to reach the lost City of Gold unfolds.

Cover Story: Crafting the Presidents’ Book -A fascinating look at the propmasters and designers who created the legendary book central to National Treasure: Book of Secrets.

Evolution of a Golden City -A look at the Hollywood sets, CGI techniques and visual effects that brought the legendary City of Gold to life.

Knights of the Golden Circle -Who were the real Knights of the Golden Circle? A short documentary traces one of America’s most mysterious and influential organizations to its roots, including interviews with KGC expert Warren Getler, the cast and crew.

Easter Eggs -Including a conversation about Beverly Hills High School with fellow alums Nic Cage and Jon Turteltaub, a look at the White House lawn scene as filmed in front of a blue screen and much more.


All the same Bonus Features as the DVD:

Audio Commentary
Deleted Scenes
The Treasure Reel
Secrets of a Sequel
The Book of Secrets: On Location
Street Stunts: Creating the London Chase
Inside the Library of Congress
Underground Action
Cover Story: Crafting the Presidents’ Book
Evolution of a Golden City
Knights of the Golden Circle
Easter Eggs

Exclusive Blu-ray Bonus Features:

Book of History: The Fact and Fiction of NT2 -Is National Treasure: Book of Secrets historical fact or historical fiction?

Pop Quiz that tests people on the history, characters, places and events that took place in the movie. Find out which historical details in the film are true and which were invented with an exclusive pop up quiz. It is a fully-interactive in-movie experience.

Two Additional Deleted Scenes -With introductions by director Jon Turteltaub

Treasure hunter Benjamin Franklin Gates is back-and this time it’s personal. When his great grandfather is implicated in the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, Ben (Nicolas Cage) is determined to clear his name, even if it means bringing together his acrimoniously divorced parents (Jon Voight and Helen Mirren). In a rollicking adventure that ranges from Buckingham Palace to Mount Rushmore, Gates pursues the infamous Book of Secrets, said to contain the truth about everything from Ben’s grandfather to the JFK murder. Only one man has access to the storied volume-the president of the United States (Bruce Greenwood), and he won’t part with it willingly. As hidden clues and long buried mysteries emerge, National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets build to an unforgettable, heart pounding climax.

Feature run time: 124 minutes
Rated: PG
Bonus material not rated.
Technical specifications may only apply to feature
Aspect ratio: Widescreen (2.35:1), 1080p
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
Languages: English, Spanish, French

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