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FOOL'S GOLD: DVD

SYNOPSIS:
Ben 'Finn' Finnegan (Matthew McConaughey) is obsessed with finding the legendary Queen's Dowry treasure chests which were lost at sea in the 18th century. It has been a quest that he and his wife Tess (Kate Hudson) have been jointly pursuing for some time. But nothing has gone right and Finn and Tess are about to be divorced. Now Tess is working on board a mega-yacht owned by billionaire Nigel Honeycutt (Donald Sutherland), whose bored, bimbo daughter Gemma (Alexis Dziena) is soon to arrive. Finn persuades Honeycutt to join them in the quest to find the treasure. But they are not the only ones after the prize. Finn's former mentor Moe Fitch (Ray Winstone) and colourful local gangster Bigg Bunny (Kevin Hart) are not far behind.

Review by Louise Keller:
They had an easy and appealing chemistry when they were paired in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, but this time around, Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson fail to ignite or generate sparks of any kind. Hudson, who usually radiates sunshine onscreen, looks subdued (her real life marriage to Black Crow Chris Robinson was falling apart at the time), and McConaughey appears only interested in flaunting his (admittedly impressive) pecs. I can't think of anything positive to say about this badly written, over directed adventure in which unbelievable characters move heaven and earth to find long lost treasure. The characters irritate, the plot strands are disconnected and even beautiful Queensland (doubling as the Bahamas) lacks that drop-dead gorgeous look we have come to expect.

I couldn't take my eyes off Donald Sutherland's yacht-owning tycoon; his clipped oh-so-British accent is a source of fascination. Also fascinating, but for less flattering reasons, is Sutherland's screen daughter Gemma Honeycutt (played by Alexis Dziena - stunning as Sharon Stone's daughter Lolita in Jim Jarmusch's Broken Flowers). Dziena plays the dumbest of dumb bimbos, wearing a never-ending wardrobe of skimpy swimsuits and being embarrassingly obtuse. (She is so dumb it takes her the entire film to notice that her father's yacht Precious Gem has a name he might have 'unconsciously' named after her!) I'm not sure what American accent Ray Winstone is trying to achieve as Mo Fitch, but he does not succeed.

Everything is overdone, played for laughs and goes that one notch beyond credibility. There are stunts (a boat blows up in the opening sequence aspiring to be funny), underwater sequences (looking extremely murky) and towards the end Hudson's Tess pushes the pilot-baddie out of the plane, forgetting she cannot fly a plane. Thank God for Play Station! There is never any doubt that the treasure will be found; nor is there doubt that this is a fool of a movie.

There's a gag reel on the DVD, plus a featurette that looks at the onscreen chemistry between Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey.

Published June 18, 2009

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 1
Mixed: 0

FOOL'S GOLD: DVD (M)
(US, 2008)

CAST: Kate Hudson, Matthew McConaughey, Donald Sutherland, Ewen Bremner, Roger Sciberras, Brian Hooks, Malcolm-Jamal Warner

PRODUCER: Donald De Line, Bernie Goldman, Jon Klane

DIRECTOR: Andy Tennant

SCRIPT: John Claflin, Daniel Zelamn, Andy Tennant

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Don Burgess

EDITOR: Troy Takaki, Tracey Wadmore-Smith

MUSIC: George Fenton

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Charles Wood

RUNNING TIME: 107 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: February 7, 2008

PRESENTATION: Widescreen

SPECIAL FEATURES: Flirting with adventure: the chemistry between two contemporary stars; gag reel

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Warner Home Video

DVD RELEASE: June 6, 2008







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