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  • I have watched this movie at least 5 times since it was released on video. It is one of the movies that is constantly entertaining. The soundtrack is great and I also agree that the chemistry between the actors was perfect. I would watch this duo again in another film. I'll put this movie on when I am cleaning the house or doing laundry. Every time I end up sitting down and watching most of it. As another viewer commented it is a lot like National Treasure(which I also give high mark). They are both easy to watch, they wrap things up nicely and leave you feeling like you went on the adventure! What else could you ask from a movie...
  • I'm extremely perplexed at the lukewarm and especially the bad reviews this one is getting from the professional critics, because my husband and I both found it a very enjoyable romp. Yes, you have to suspend your disbelief during some of the action sequences, but I don't remember people complaining about the lack of realism in the Indy Jones or "Romancing the Stone" series. The dialogue (especially the buddy banter and William H. Macy's character) is amusing, the plot easy to follow despite its complexities, and the action virtually nonstop. I also found it refreshing for the sidekick to look like a doofus, but actually more than hold his own during crunch time.

    I can only assume the negative reactions are from fans of the book (I have never read any Clive Custler, so it may well depart from it in tone or otherwise.) But judged solely on its merits as a light-hearted adventure movie, it more than met my expectations.
  • I was pleasantly surprised to see how fun, fast-paced and witty this non-R rated movie came out. Beautiful scenery and Indiana Jones-like action mixed with humor and drama. Great film. I wish there were more films like this that lack the need for explicit sex, violence, drugs or swearing to get noticed. I believe strongly in movies that contain the aforementioned elements and are for adults; it's just sad to see few family films that don't involve animated cookie-cutter characters. Nice jobs by both Zahn and Cruz. The supporting characters were likable and not too cliché. Admittedly Zahn has fallen into a role of the crazy side-kick, but in this film I think he finally finds the balance of kooky and serious in the way a action movie "buddy" should.
  • My Take: James Bond meets Indiana Jones with silly yet exciting action, crackling wit.

    Although it was credited as a "Dirk Pitt Adventure", SAHARA seems more in kin with James Bond and Indiana Jones than Clive Cussler. I haven't read any of Clive Cussler's books, but I'm absolutely certain that this would be Cussler's visualization. It is, indeed, a B-level adventure film, complete with heroes in top gear (complete with winning grin, no less), the sexy heroine, the sidekick, and the bad guys who want to rule the world (or simply get whatever it is they want). Not to mention the series of stunt play and gunfights done the old-fashioned way. This is the look (and feel) of an action picture they no longer make, which provides most of its appeal. I enjoyed SAHARA on the level many think it doesn't work, and that's being a traditional old-fashioned brainless adventure. It's not great at the field, but at least it has its heart on it.

    Its tag line states "Adventure has a new name", it's without question or doubt that Dirk Pitt, Cussler's brainchild hero played here by Matthew McConaughey, will be a new James Bond or Indiana Jones. The charisma given to him is good but obvious. He's calm over tension, and never loses his cool even at extreme measures. The other supporting characters have nothing in them, their there, but practically, their hardly anybody but characters in a movie. If characters in adventure movies could be quite as interesting as those featured in the INDIANA JONES series, couldn't we deserve to get the same on other entries in the genre, including knock-offs.

    Still, what you've come to expect from SAHARA are here anyway. The implausible plot involves the quest for a lost Ironclad in the middle of the Sahara desert (!) by the dashing Dirk Pitt (McConaughey), his sidekick Al (Steve Zahn) and a daring Dr. Eva Rojas (Penelope Cruz), who trek through the blazing desert landscape with camels, vans, boats, you name it. Along the way, they are trailed by the bad guys and get into situations that could only mean more action movie fun. What's in store? Helicopter chases (my favorite!), gunfights, boat chases and even a train chase with camels (who even knew that you can still come up with a fun action movie sequence with camels!). If you don't think this stuff is any fun, you may wanna have to check with your doctor in case your sugar's a little low.

    Is SAHARA any great? No it isn't. But did I get exactly what I wanted from it? It surely does. Even if this genre, which includes films like NATIONAL TREASURE, will never live up to its superior INDIANA JONES ancestors, they will still nonetheless offer the action and adventure it promises. And in that level, SAHARA delivers.

    Rating: *** out of 5.
  • Bring on Dirk Pitt! Here is a movie that wants to have fun, the cast wants to have fun. The audience ends up having fun. Steve Zahn is hilarious. Matthew McConaughey handles the limited demands of his role quite well. Penelope Cruz brings her ever-present charm and beauty to a role which is notable for being one of the few action-adventure roles written for a female that is not obnoxious in recent memory. You can't take your eyes off William H. Macy whenever he is on screen in ANY movie. He's that good.

    It's kind of a Bond meets Indiana Jones film (I swear they used the same canyon from "Raiders of the Lost Ark") The villains are one dimensional, but who cares? We are here to follow the exploits of our heroes. If we have to suspend our disbelief, we do it willingly because we are grinning ear to ear.
  • The film starts in the Richmond battle (1865) where a war ship is disappeared and is gone during modern time in that an archaeologists(Matthew McConaughey,Steve Zhan and William H.Macy) are looking for treasures on Africa. A physician (Penelope Cruz ) is investigating about an illness which is killing thousands people . Then they 'll take on ominous villains,evil Arabs,corrupt governments and many dangers until discover the enigmas.

    The motion picture blends adventures, unstopped action,humor,a love story,tongue in cheek,tense and is enough amusing. From the beginning to end the adventures,action-packed and the fast movement is continuous, for that the film is pretty bemusing and isn't boring in spite of the longtime, as the run is two hours and some. The starring couple(Matthew MacConaughey and Steve Zahn) make a type of ¨buddy movie¨ both are top notch and very sympathetic.Penelope Cruz is attractive and enjoyable, this is her best film. The support cast is of first range (William H.Macy,Lambert Wilson,Delroy Lindo) and are excellent. Cinematography and musical score(Clint Mansell) is magnificent and riveting. Production design (Allan Cameron) is spellbound and the Sahara outdoors are spectaculars. The final confrontation between the starring and the enemies is breathtaking and impressive. It's a run and mill action film where the comedy and the giggles united to the action make the story very agreeable and stimulating. The picture well directed by Brick Eisner obtained a lot of success and achieved important box office, it was number one in United States and Europe. It's a real blockbuster. The yarn will appeal to emotion and adventure enthusiasts . Rating: Above average. Well worth seeing.
  • As a fan of Clive Cussler I was pretty excited when I heard this movie was being made. I went to see the movie with only two hopes. First that I wouldn't be disappointed as I was with Hollywood's poor attempt at "Raise The Titanic". And secondly as a loyal fan of Mr Cussler's books (I have them all and read them all) joy at finally seeing Dirk, Al, Rudi, and Sandecker all come to life.

    I was not disappointed. The film makers did rearrange the story a bit (treasure hunters instead of the research scientists), Sandecker retired (not in his usual office at NUMA). They omitted a few details from the book (such as Lincoln being on the Texas and Kitty Mancock the pilot of the plane, and of course the scene in the book where the author himself appears) but overall I just LOVED this movie. It was packed with action and the chemistry between Dirk/Al was fantastic. I feel that all the actors played their respective parts great and it is my sincere hope that we will get to see these characters again.
  • spamisgod1 March 2005
    I just saw this movie at the Philadelphia screening, and I'm going to agree with the 8 star rating it has garnered so far. We all know the formula for this sort of movie, and yes, Sahara does follow the formula pretty closely, but it's enjoyable nonetheless.

    It's an action movie, if that wasn't entirely clear. Simply put, if you like action movies, see this movie. If you don't, don't. The film follows our hero – ex-marine treasure hunter Dirk Pitt – and his friends through Africa as they uncover evil plots, fight bad guys, and search for treasure. While there aren't any surprising twists in the plot, I do admit that it was not completely predictable. The plot has enough originality in it to keep you watching. True to it's genre, the plot delivers plenty of action. It's not to stylized (Matrix) or epic (Lord of the Rings) but it won't let you down. The ending is just about as slam-bang as you'd expect, I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

    Dirk Pitt is played by Matthew McConaughey, who happened to speak before the movie was shown. Apparently he'd been involved in the movie as more than just an actor – he is one of the executive producers, a role he takes seriously (he said he'd had the opportunity to produce other films but turned them down, not wanting to get involved in something unless he was really going to commit to actually working on it). McConaughey said that he'd been trying to get the role for seven years, and is quite pleased with the result. When asked if he planned to produce future movies, he gave a definitive "yes". He also hinted at the possibility of a sequel, if this movie does well, noting that there are sixteen more books by the author this script was based on.

    McConaughey plays Pitt well. It's a pretty standard action-hero role. McConaughey's performance isn't particularly ground-breaking, but he throws the punches and delivers the lines with appropriate demeanor. My only complaint would be that he is a little too cool at times, given the stressful situations... but then again this movie wasn't made for realism. Al Giordino is Dirk's more technically minded buddy and co-adventurer. They've been friends since kindergarten, how sweet. Oh and you guessed it. Al is our comic-relief guy. Al is played by Steve Zahn, who delivers the comic relief character in a manner slightly less cliché than I was expecting. It just works a little better because he really does come off naturally as Dirk's long time friend, as opposed to some wise-ass who's just here for the ride. The chemistry between McConaughey and Zahn is very effective, as the previous reviewer pointed out. They really do appear more as two guys trying to get something done as opposed a hero and a side-kick. Also worth mentioning is Rainn Wilson who plays Rudi. Rudi is basically another comic-relief guy who has much less screen time then Zahn, but Wilson did a nice job. William H. Macy plays the commander type character, Dirks boss. Not Macy's best job in my opinion, it was a bit stilted – but with some funny moments. Lambert Wilson, of Matrix fame (The Merovingian) stars as well. I was a little disappointed to see him early on in the film, cause it was one of those moments where I just knew that he was going to turn out to be a bad guy. He does pretty well, although he seems to be doing just a slightly toned-down version of the Merovingian here. Ah, and let's not forget Penélope Cruz. Our heroine, the W.H.O. doctor, does just fine in her role. One thing I have to say is that the inevitable hero / heroine romance is very effectively down-played. In fact, there really isn't too much romance in this film at all.

    On the technical end of things, Sahara does fine. There aren't too many overwhelming special effects, but the effects there are come off completely realistically. The movie is shot beautifully, although it seemed like the entire thing was shot with extremely long lenses. I was glad to have my depth perception back at the end of the movie. The vistas of Morocco are quite nice, and there are some nice scenes in modern day African cities and towns that pick up quite nicely on camera. I got excited when I saw Clint Mansell's name in the opening credits as the music composer (he brought us the fabulous Requiem for a Dream piece, probably my favorite soundtrack song). In the end, the music wasn't much to talk about. The orchestral pieces were pretty bland (sorry Clint), and there were occasional bits of popular music that I found to be out of place (the inclusion of "Sweet Home Alabama" is particularly offensive in this regard, it's been in so many soundtracks, it even has it's own movie). There is some quite decent African music which is enjoyable.

    The rating of PG-13 is appropriate. There is no nudity or anything, no serious profanities that I can remember, and the action is not gory or too bloody.

    All in all, it's a fun movie. If you need heart-rending drama and a complex psychological plot, than you will probably not agree with my 8 star rating. This movie isn't going to win any awards, and will not become a favorite of serious film aficionados, but if you want to go out to the theater on a Saturday night with a bunch of friends, this will be one movie you can all agree on.
  • Nice popcorn flick. The acting is good and Matthew McConaughey looks just the part of Dirk Pitt. The rest of the cast is also good. Steve Zahn had the best part I think. The character wasn't that of the typical sidekick and the director takes this into consideration by giving Al as much screen time as Dirk.I read the novel too and still found the film entertaining. There were a couple of scenes which made me laugh in disbelief, but the film needed such stuff. Dirk Pitt, the resourceful adventurer always turns adversity into advantage and this film tried pretty well to depict that. Also, the dialog between Dirk & Al is good. Only thing I felt out of order was Rudi being depicted as a complete nerd. Still makes a good viewing, though it helps not being hypercritical.
  • I'll admit I've missed a lot of action movies released recently, because the subject matter didn't interest me all that much. The advance press for /Sahara/, with its obvious links to treasure hunting and to intrigue, led me to believe that I'd enjoy it more than, say, recent Vin Diesel work. And I was right.

    Dirk Pitt is an Indiana Jones for the modern day. But he's more. There's an edge, an extra quality of "can do" that helps carry the improbabilities of the plot nicely.

    If you liked /Raiders of the Lost Ark/ or /Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade/, you should go see this picture.

    Some violence, mostly of the shoot-'em up variety, often more implied than "in your face" (and that's a good thing). Definitely intelligent and thoughtful story line.

    Matthew McConaughey (Dirk Pitt) is easy to watch. Steve Zahn (Al Giordino) is near perfect as his sidekick. Penélope Cruz (Eva Rojas) holds her own against the bad guys. William H. Macy (Admiral James Sandecker) is excellent in his role as well.

    It's fun, and it's worth full price admission. What could be better than that?
  • By accident, I caught an advance screening of this movie last night in DC. I'd heard negative reviews, but thankfully did not let that cloud my judgment. The chemistry between Matthew McConaughey & Steve Zahn is palpable. I didn't think the chemistry between Penelope & Matthew sizzled, till the end. But since we all know now that they're together...I find it amusing. Good for them!! The location shots for this movie are phenomenal, esp Morocco. I'm bringing ALL my Moroccan friends to the movie when it is released. It's similar to National Treasure, but not as slick. There was more sarcastic humor throughout National Treasure, but there's great buddy chemistry in Sahara. I HOPE that Steve Zahn & Matthew McConaughey do a sequel or at least another movie together. This film is worth the price of full admission.
  • This movie is definitely not a masterpiece. The screenplay is dumb. The acting is to say the least, average. The story is preposterous. Yet, as Ebert nicely put it, "I enjoyed this movie on its own dumb level, which must mean (I am forced to conclude) in my own dumb way". Yes, this is a film you should watch with your brain switched comfortably to the 'Off' position, a nice cold beer on the table and a bag of popcorn in your lap. When you come to think about it though, isn't that what movies are supposed to be all about in the first place?

    P.S. One thing worth mention though is the excellent cinematography. The movie is a wonderful African picture book, which definitely helps the overall experience.
  • It had been proposed by some that the only reason Eisner Jr. (Breck) was allowed to make this film was his relationship with Eisner Sr. (Michael). While there is no proof for such an argument either way, Breck has proved to be not much worse than other directors. In fact he did better than most and worse than some. Sahara is best described as a typical entertaining adventure in the vein of Indiana Jones or perhaps National Treasure. It has a tough good guy (McConaughey), a funny sidekick (Zane) and admirable eye-candy (Cruz). Now I admit that most things are quite shallow, but if you mix all of the above mentioned ingredients with a decent story, good action sequences and throw in the fact that there isn't one nanosecond of corniness in this movie, you inevitably end up with a crowd pleasing blockbuster.

    7,25 out of 10
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Having seen the film cold, without any pre-knowledge of the plot, or without seeing any reviews, this film is far, far better than the average credit given in reviews. The plot is very wide-ranging and develops atmosphere and intrigue in the first 40 minutes. The action scenes are stunning, real edge of seat scenes and the final 90 minutes had me unable to leave my seat in case of missing anything vital. The 'plague' becoming a toxic effect was intriguing. The dictator cold-bloodily killing the doctor's colleague was as chilling a scene as ever could be imagined. The military run Mali was a surprise, given its location. Once the action started, it was very fast paced and never predictable. In retrospect, some of the characters seemed indestructible, but one could never be sure during the film. Yes some of the action was far-fetched, but often quite humorous!!! Again, are any of the James Bond or Tom Cruise films anything but far-fetched!!! To me, the plot has been very well put together, and like the Bond films may well differ from the book, for cinematic effect. I think it is very well acted, very well-produced and has its own genre, 'similar' to the Jewel or Indiana Jones films. The characters are different, which is an added advantage. The lead actor Matthew McConaughey is a pretty tough character, and his comrades/ compatriots have a softer and often more humorous side to their nature. the romance is not over-played, and Penélope Cruz plays the World Health Organisation (WHO)doctor (Not doctor who!)role demurely and extremely well. It's a shame for various reasons Clive Cussler's Dirk Pitt novels won't at present be figuring in any sequels. Sahara did well at the box offices, despite critics efforts to deride the film. This speaks volumes about the film's depth, excitement and audience appeal!!! It does succeed, and who would take it too seriously!!
  • I saw this movie in theaters, and I loved it. The fighting scenes were excellent, a lot of the lines made me laugh, and the story line was great. I definitely liked how the writer connected two plots together, and i liked the music they added into the movie. As soon as it was out on DVD, i had to buy it. I had watched it over and over again (especially the boat scene). The actors were sensational. I fell in love with Penelope Cruz when I first saw her. Steve Zahn was hysterical, and an excellent actor. Metthew McConaughey was the perfect actor for his part. Like I said, run out to your nearest video store and buy/rent this movie. I was glad I did.

  • I expected nothing from this movie and was pleasantly surprised, even refreshed. All of the characters had a reason to be where they were, even the female character. Her mission is actual more compelling than the lead's. The sidekick, Al (Steve Zahn), is not just a buddy along for the ride. It's clear that the lead wouldn't be able to do what he does without him. Beside, Zahn is just damn funny.

    It didn't require my full capacity to suspend disbelief, which was especially refreshing and left mental reserves to actually appreciate the characters and story.

    I was pleased to recognize drum rhythms that were actually from Nigeria and Mali. Indigenous music enhanced the adventure of by taking us there. The locations were filled out, and not just a backdrop for the action.

    Go ahead and watch it. It's not as cheesy as it looks.
  • Although some of the script and action in this movie really stretch the bounds of "suspension of disbelief", I found myself pretty much engrossed throughout because of its fast pace and a reasonably well crafted plot with plenty of twists and turns. The cast lineup is excellent for the over-30 demographic, the production values are remarkably good, and the soundtrack just rocks with an eclectic lineup of tunes that really put a person in the mood for action. And after all, Clive Cussler is all about pure, escapist action -- no more, no less. Steve Zahn gives us lotsa larfs to boot. So guys, sit back with a tall one of your favourite beverage, hit the mute button on the discerning part of your brain, crank up the audio, and enjoy a great 2-hour ride with Sahara.
  • Sahara was a pretty good action movie in the same mold as Indiana Jones, Tomb Raider & National Treasure. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but it probably would not have worked as well without the comedic duo of Matthew McConaughey and Steve Zahn. Penélope Cruz pulled her weight as well. She reminded me so much of Salma Hayek that I would swear they are related.

    Treasure Hunters Dirk Pitt and Al Giordino (McConaughey & Zahn) manage to get their hands on a rare confederate coin, apparently which only 5 were made. It would have made quite a collector's item. Dirk has a hunch on where the ship it had originated from is now and also has a theory on how it got there, in the middle of the desert. Dirk manages to convince his boss, Admiral Jim Sandecker (William H. Macy), to loan him his boat for 3 days to search for the missing ship.

    Before they get going, they run into two W.H.O. workers, one of who was the beautiful Eva Rojas (Penélope Cruz). They need a ride and manage to get on board with Dirk and Al, but by doing so, they get the attention of an African dictator, who wants to stop them before they get too close.

    There are quite a few action scenes and for what it was, I was entertained throughout the movie. More so than I would have though, which is why I waited so long to see it. Like I mentioned above, I do not think I would have enjoyed it as much without McConaughey. He added sort of a friendly charm to the movie and if that is not enough, Penélope Cruz should make up the difference.
  • Action/adventure movies have to have more than action and adventure in order to work - otherwise they just end up being pale copies of each other with only minor variations. At the very least, they need an intriguing story line and good performances. On those counts, "Sahara" works pretty well. Admittedly, at first glance this would appear to be something of a "Raiders of the Lost Ark" clone, with the emphasis on treasure hunting. However, once it gets going it's far more intriguing, and, of course, with a more modern flair to it. It's about the quest for a Confederate ironclad that ran the Union blockade in the last days of the Civil War and is now inexplicably reputed to be buried in the sands of the Sahara. How it got there is one mystery in the movie. That story ends up being linked with a mysterious plague that's starting to spread in northwest Africa, and finally with a potential environmental catastrophe that needs to be stopped. The three stories blend together very well. Being set in modern Africa also allows for some consideration of the problem of "warlordism" that still afflicts parts of that continent. So, the story works.

    So do the performances. I'm not a huge fan of Matthew McConnaughy to be honest, but he was very good as Dirk Pitt, the leader of the expedition looking for the ironclad, and he was complemented very nicely by Steve Zahn as his sidekick Al. The two shared some witty dialogue and both were well partnered with Penelope Cruz as the doctor from the World Health Organization who's investigating the plague and, in a somewhat lesser role, by Rainn Wilson as Rudi, a fellow adventurer. Also featured fairly prominently (although most of his scenes were his own; he wasn't in partnership too much with the others) was William H. Macy as Dirk's boss.

    It's what you'd expect in such a movie in terms of adventure and action, but the intrigue in the storyline and good performances raise it up a notch or two. 7/10
  • xseijitsux5 November 2006
    I've been reading the books since I was nine or ten years old, my first having been Atlantis Found and which still remains my favorite to this day, followed by the entire collection of Clive Cussler's amazing books. I've been saying for YEARS that this series needed to be made into a series of movies, one for nearly every book. When I finally heard that in fact a movie, based on the book Sahara, was finally in production, I nearly died and went to heaven. It had been a good six years since I had read the corresponding book, but I still remembered it somewhat.

    Matthew McConaughey is one of my favorite actors, but honestly I had never thought he would work as the beloved Dirk Pitt. Yet, when I saw him with his hair dyed and the green contacts, I knew he was a near match physically. Seeing the movie would be the final test, and I was not disappointed. When I finally knew he was the one, the moment that sent shivers down my spine, was when he went barefoot into that temple looking for knowledge, standing in the shadow and light in his khaki colored outfit....that was when I knew he was Dirk Pitt. He gave a flawless performance that I hope nearly all fans of Dirk could be happy with, men and women alike.

    Steve Zahn cast as the just as beloved Al Giordino was a complete joke to me from the start. I may be a purist when it comes to movies based on books, but I was sorely disappointed when he was cast instead of a short, barrel-chested Italian with a shock of curly black hair, and a finger missing on one hand. The man who could sleep anywhere anytime, the man who could communicate disturbingly well with Dirk without ever speaking a word, the man you knew you and Dirk could count on. I could have accepted a complete set of fingers, or even a guy who wasn't really Italian, or all that short as long as he was shorter than Dirk's actor, but instead they brought in a joker. Steve Zahn certainly has a kind of chemistry that worked well with Matthew McConaughey, and he certainly could steal the show for the right viewer, but I find his performance and his entire presence in the movie a distraction, and an insult to Al Giordino's true character.

    Raine Wilson as Rudi Gunn was passable, but not really that much like Rudi. The character really is dweeb-like with glasses, but not nearly as helpless as Raine made him out to be. He could kick serious butt when the situation demanded it.

    William H. Macy was a surprise to me as Admiral James Sandecker, and not quite what I physically pictured (i.e. he didn't have the pointed Vandyke goatee he was supposed to have, as well as his hair not quite as blazing red as it should've been), but he ended up being alright for the role. Appearances can be somewhat forgivable, more so than a complete personality change as in the case of Steve's performance as Al. I was disappointed at what little importance was placed on Sandecker's coveted, special order cigars, and Al's uncanny ability to unnerve Sandecker by having identical cigars, assumed to have been stolen from Sandecker's secret stash(es), but that kind of thing can be hard to portray without a narrator with complete insight, so I forgive them for that. I also hope if the movies continue, they will show the N.U.M.A. headquarters, and Sandecker's commanding role at the facility.

    Since Penelope Cruz is not one of my personal favorite actresses, I was not excited at her being cast opposite Matthew McConaughey as Eva Rohas. But upon watching it, I found that she was perfect for the role, held her own, and offered a certain flare to the movie, so much so that I found the movie would not have been complete had she not been cast for the role.

    Much of the movie, and the books really, is full of coincidences that seem unreal, nearly impossible stunts and impromptu solutions to problems that miraculously work and save the day, but to me they add something to the legend that is Dirk Pitt, and also to Al Giordino. The reality is both Dirk and Al are intelligent men with more ingenuity that more than twice as many normal men could ever hope to possess, who are incredibly close and work flawlessly together as a team with a slew of support people and resources in the N.U.M.A. organization (shown more in the books than in the movie, which I hope will change). They are two men with an unwavering sense of justice, a strong determination to do what is right, and the ability and knowhow to do so. What more could anyone ask for of any hero, super or not, and his near equal sidekick? I gave a rating a little less than perfect because of the presence of Steve Zahn, Raine Wilson not quite up to par, and the fact that much of the story was changed from the book...too much, in my opinion.

    All in all a very enjoyable film, and I do look forward to the next installments of the series, if they ever manage to make it to production.
  • Sahara is one of the biggest financial flops of Hollywood.Critics rating doesn't hold that good either. But for me, this is one of the best wholesome entertainers I have ever seen. Action, adventure and comedy at its very best.

    The credit for making this movie a visual extravaganza goes to the direction, cinematography and especially art direction. The movie highlights the natural beauty of Africa. The action sequences shot at River Niger is a perfect example.

    The movie showcases some breathtaking action sequences. Well, it should, considering about the 130 million dollars poured into the movie. The film is fast, free flowing without giving a single minute of boredom like unwanted romance, sentiments or even unwanted dialogues. The movie is made to be a comic action adventure entertainer and does full justice to its genre.

    Had this movie become a success, then Matthew McConnaughey would have been a real superstar by now. Such is the powerful,cheesy acting he features. It is a shame really that this movie did not succeed.The supporting cast is superb, especially William Macy and Lennie James. Lennis James makes the villain the most memorable character of the film.

    Well, if you want to lie on your back, crack a snack and get some fun, then this is the movie for you. Once again, too bad it was a flop.
  • Daryl-714 November 2006
    We just loved this movie. A thriller from start to finish. Yes, it fits nicely into the Indiana Jones model. So what? It works.

    Matthew McConaughey is looming large as one of Hollywood's best leading men, especially for action/adventures. My wife and I have been lamenting the loss of our best action heroes (Bruce Willis, Mel Gibson, etc.) - they're all just too old. And who is supposed to take over? The Rock?? Vin Diesel?? No fricking way. Matthew M. is going to lead the charge.

    Steve Zahn was an amazing sidekick. Loved him. And if Penelope Cruz was any more beautiful, well, let's just say she was a more than capable leading lady - tough, smart and lovely.

    I loved the chemistry between these three. Saying William H. Macy was excellent seems obvious (he's always excellent).

    Anyway, loved the entire movie, from front to back. Haven't read Cussler's books, but now I'm thinking about picking up a copy of one of them.

    The only thorn in my side the entire movie was the soundtrack. What the hell???? Sweet Home Alabama when they're driving around Africa? Couldn't you find any suitable music for a desert adventure? The Faces? Seventies rock 'n roll? Are you kidding me? I mean, I love that music, but it was such a non sequitur with the story that it jarred me out of my seat. (And that's hard to do once I'm settled, let me tell ya.) Superb casting. Great acting. Nice story. Top notch entertainment.
  • pfelon14 September 2005
    Yes, this is not a great movie. And yes, this is not what most would consider a good film. However, the limited acting of Zahn, MM, and Cruz give this film some life, and the the plot makes it truly live. Sad to say, but Eisner makes this movie move along, and the plot is a good one (Clive Cussler likely deserves most credit on this). As far as the treasure/mystery/comedy genre goes, this is the best in a long while. It's entertaining, bottomline. Like one of Cussler's novels, it keeps you interested for a few hours and, basically, makes you feel like you're working toward something. A solid 7 of 10, rent it and pop some popcorn. Cruz is hot (as always), so enjoy her if nothing else. Among the tops as far as Hollywood tripe goes.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    It was very untraditional, according to what I know about desert action movies. It proves that there is still some new things left in this world for the average cocky, young, heroic adventurer to discover and do something about. It also has the A-Team's ability to roll with the punches, both physical and metaphorical. In others words, to work with what fate, chance, karma or whatever holds the BIG cards gives the heroes. (I thought it was REALLY inventive, the way that the two main men fixed up a broken old plane to make a very large windsurfer.) The humor was somewhat strange, and the wit was classic American sarcasm, exaggeration and continual controversy. PLUS: a whole lot of complaining. At least, near the end, it stuck with some of the crucial elements near the beginning that made up the story. Good continuity,(goofs not included.) Yes, all in all, I think a generous 9 out of 10 is a more than adequate judge-mark for this film.
  • STAR RATING: ***** The Works **** Just Misses the Mark *** That Little Bit In Between ** Lagging Behind * The Pits

    Adventurer Dirk Pitt (Matthew McCoughnehey) travels to Nigeria, Africa to retrieve an ancient battleship. However, he stumbles upon a travesty. The people are dying or terribly diseased because of polluted water from the wells. There is, of course, a more insidious reason for this: the typically corrupt African government and a plot that spreads all the way to the States. Pitt, his sidekick and Eva (Penelope Cruz) a beautiful doctor determined to stop the spread of the disease, must battle to save the day.

    Sahara is a slick, glossy effort that has a pleasingly polished feel all the way. It has a neat soundtrack and some fairly exciting action sequences. But, fun as they are, there's not nearly enough of them and the disappointing lack of action leaves the film to get a little boring along with the wavey plot that meanders about a bit for two hours.

    McCoughnehey isn't my favourite leading man. A bit too smug and coy for my liking. His sidekick is little more than your typical wise-cracking Hollywood fall guy and similarly Cruz can do little more than be the usual steely, determined love interest you see in films like this. As for the rest of the supporting cast, William H Macy is pleasing but Delroy Lindo gets hardly any screen-time in his role.

    A film with some serious flaws, but still a fairly enjoyable piece of Sunday afternoon BBC 1 entertainment. ***
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