Keeping up with the Joneses
Archaeologist Jack Hunter (Ivan Sergei) was going to break in to a museum in France, take pictures of an ancient cuneiform tablet from Syria and then leave. But first he triggers the alarms, then a security guard makes him drop the camera and so he ends up having to steal the tablet for his mentor, Professor Freddie Shaffer (Sean Lawlor). Freddie is convinced the inscription on the tablet is more than just a poem and will lead them to a long lost treasure. Unfortunately Freddie is murdered by someone else wanting the tablet and willing to kill to steal it. It leads to Jack heading to Damascus where he finds himself working with the attractive but stubborn Nadia (Joanne Kelly) to find the relic and uncover the secrets before the evil Albert Littman (Thure Riefenstein) does.
So the artwork I saw for "Jack Hunter and the Lost Treasure of Ugarit" with Ivan Sergei wearing a fedora made this look like an Indiana Jones rip off and I am sure like many who saw the artwork prior to watching were expecting the worse. And I won't lie as "Jack Hunter and the Lost Treasure of Ugarit" is an Indiana Jones rip off from the way the story is constructed, to moments of action, to the way characters are dressed and so on. As such I won't deny that on numerous occasions I found myself groaning at scenes which are inferior rip-offs as well as comical sidekick characters that are not that comical.
But here is the daft thing as whilst "Jack Hunter and the Lost Treasure of Ugarit" has many faults it is also surprisingly watch able with Ivan Sergei doing a remarkably good job of rocking a fedora hat. And the antagonistic relationship between Jack and Nadia is also entertaining with Joanne Kelly doing an equally good job of playing the typical antagonistic romantic role with her character falling for the hunky Jack. Yes it is all extremely cliche and when you pay attention the story doesn't make a huge amount of sense starting with why an archaeologist would be the one picked to sneak in to a museum but in its own rip-off sort of way it puts a smile on your face.
What this all boils down to is that "Jack Hunter and the Lost Treasure of Ugarit" is everything you expect it to be from a movie which looks and is an Indiana Jones rip-off. But it is also surprisingly entertaining with Ivan Sergei doing a decent job of playing the heroic Jack Hunter.