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'Fool's Gold'

Topography counts in treasure hunts — which this desperately unfunny shlock-fest theoretically is — but even that can't explain Andy Tennant's fascination with Matthew McConaughey's chest.

The actor's shirtless torso is on display so relentlessly as he and his confederates search for sunken gold off the coast of Florida that you half-expect the director to cross-fade from six-pack abs to similarly-ridged sand dunes. Maybe McConaughey's sternum will offer a clue to the crevasse into which a legendary 18th-century galleon sank. Mightn't a tattoo suggest the shape of ... oh, never mind. Tennant likely just realized the film had no other draw.

Certainly not its script, which has perhaps three smile-provoking lines. Nor his peformers, who can't even be bothered to maintain the ludicrous accents they've been assigned (Donald Sutherland as a Brit? Scotland's Ewen Bremner as an Eastern European?). There's not a moment that even approaches clever — but then with that title, you have to concede you've been warned.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Bob Mondello, who jokes that he was a jinx at the beginning of his critical career — hired to write for every small paper that ever folded in Washington, just as it was about to collapse — saw that jinx broken in 1984 when he came to NPR.
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