National Treasure: Edge of History Review: Mama MOE Series Review

If you are looking for a new series to watch with your tweens and teens, I have a great recommendation! We gobbled up this series together and I think you will love it as much as your children will.

Do you know how there are some movies from your past that you can’t wait to watch again with your children when they reach an appropriate age? Now that my boys are teenagers, we have been going back in time to watch the classics from my childhood together. A few years ago, we watched the National Treasure movies, and honestly when we were done, we wanted more movies to watch just like them. They are filled with suspense, action, and humour – everything my teen boys love in a movie.

The first National Treasure movie hit the theatres in 2004 and it introduced audiences to Benjamin Gates, played by Nicolas Cage, a witty historian that took us on a journey to find a treasure dating back to the creation of the United States. The movies were so popular and had such a fan base over the years that this new series, National Treasure: Edge of History was created.

Have a look at the trailer:

Jess Valenzuela’s life is turned upside down when an enigmatic stranger gives her a clue to a centuries-old treasure that might be connected to her long-dead father. Jess has a knack for solving puzzles, and her skills are put to the test as she and her friends follow a series of clues hidden in American artifacts and landmarks. But can Jess outsmart a black-market antiquities dealer in a race to find history’s greatest lost treasure and unbury the truth about her family’s past?

The series is ten episodes long with the opportunity to continue for more seasons, based on the storyline. We really hope they continue this series because it was so fun to watch. The episodes take you on a ride in the pursuit of treasure, in a scavenger hunt. It has an Indiana Jones feel to it, and the storyline is clever.

Movies vs Series – Which is Better?

With such a strong fan-base since the first movie hit theatres in 2004, why did Disney decide to create a series instead? From what I have researched, the short answer is the inception of Disney+ . And very honestly, binge-watching is such a way of life now, that many people are looking for a short series to get into instead of a singular 90-minute movie. I personally would rush to the theater now to see the third National Treasure movie, and maybe with the popularity of the series, we will see these actors along side the OG actors of the franchise in a movie, who knows!

Disney’s “National Treasure” stars Lisette Olivera as Jess, Catherine Zeta-Jones as Billie, Zuri Reed as Tasha, Jordan Rodrigues as Ethan, Antonio Cipriano as Oren, Jake Austin Walker as Liam Sadusky, and Lyndon Smith as Agent Ross. (Disney/Michael Muller)

The Characters

My sons’ favourite character was Oren, played by Antonio Cipriano. What I appreciated in the series was that all the characters were smart. While Oren was goofy at times, that was just his personality. Many series tend to make up a dumb boy or a ditzy girl to offset the smart characters. I’m really happy to see this did not exist here. Every character had something to contribute to solving the mystery and finding the treasure. They were clearly friends looking out for each other which was also refreshing to watch on screen. What’s more, the series does not have any gratuitous scenes that are inappropriate for a younger audience. As well, this series showcases diversity in its cast – something the original two movies were lacking.

While most actors in this series are new to the franchise, it was such a pleasure to see Harvey Keitel reprise his role as Agent Sadusky in the pilot episode. Justin Bartha also comes into the series with his role as Riley Poole.

National Treasure: Edge of History, JUSTIN BARTHA, LISETTE OLIVERA

Do You Need to See Both National Treasure Movies Before the Series?

It had been a few years since we had watched the movies with our sons, but we all had some memories of the characters and the storyline. There were a few times we paused the show to remember who was who and what connections were being made. That said, if you can watch the movies first, I think you will enjoy the series even more.

If you never see the movies and start with the series, I think it is very interesting, but some backstories will be missing for you to truly enjoy the mysteries. Because the National Treasure and the movies are in the same family-friendly genre for tweens and teens, they are perfect to watch in sequence. Please keep in mind there is violence in the series (guns, etc.) and people are killed. This is why I recommend the series for tweens and up, but as always, you know your child better than anyone to decide what they are ready to watch. My suggestion is to watch the series as a family – there is a lot to enjoy in it, even for adults.

Will There Be a Second Season?

I really hope so! We loved this series, and it was just the right amount of episodes to grab our attention and hold it until the very end. Without giving anything away, there is a wink to a new treasure at the end of the series. Clearly, this was to leave the possibility of continuing the series open. As well, there is a scene eluding to Riley speaking with Benjamin on the phone, suggesting they are in contact…I’m hoping that the rumors I heard are true and that Nicolas Cage will have a cameo as Benjamin Gates’ character and come into the second series.

Let me know what you think about National Treasure: Edge of History when you get the chance to watch it. Now available on Disney+.

Disclosure: All images are courtesy of Disney Studios. I was invited to pre-screen this series for review. All opinions are my own.

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