Top 10 Treasure Hunting Movies of All Time

Top 10 Treasure Hunting Movies

Everyone loves a thrilling game of cat and mouse as treasure hunters solve the clues and follow the map ahead of the bad guys hot on their tails.

It’s a formula that just seems to work no matter what era the film was made universally loved as it reminds us of using our own imaginations when playing as kids.

In this article, we will show you the top ten best treasure hunting movies of all time.

#10. Romancing the Stone (1984)

Romancing the Stone (1984)

 In this comedy movie, a cheesy romance author from the Big Apple is sick of her mundane life and yearns for a taste of the adventure and passion that only exists within the pages of her books.


Not long after she receives a package from her kidnapped sister containing a map leading to a priceless jewel located deep in the wild jungles of Colombia. She realizes that there is no other option than to embark on a dangerous adventure, taking the sought-after treasure map with her.


The story features an unlikely partnership with the British smuggler that eventually culminates in a passionate romance.

#9. National Treasure (2004) 

National Treasure (2004) 

A modern take on the charming historian adventurer set in the USA of all places, instead of some ancient pyramid or forgotten ruin.


The search is on for a treasure that was kept safe and unfindable since the time of the Founding Fathers with the help of clues being hidden inside precious historical objects such as a smoking pipe and the Declaration of Independence.


The scavenger hunt quickly turns into a wild goose chase as they race across the country from one historical monument to another in order to crack the code and locate the treasure. The movie was not really loved by critics but received relatively good user ratings on the IMDb website.

#8. Three Kings (1999)

Three Kings (1999)

When a trio of Gulf War soldiers hear of a bunker containing a vast horde of gold belonging to dictator Saddam Hussein, the trio formulate a plant to break in and steal the riches, becoming multimillionaires in the process.


The story quickly turns focus away from the treasure and towards a more humanitarian angle. Did they forget about the goal to save the helpless civilians from being slaughtered by the approaching Iraqi armed forces!.


The movie was received well by critics, obtaining a Metascore of 82 on Metacritic.

#7. It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963)

It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963)

This hilarious story all starts with a car crash with the driver telling four fellow motorists nearby that he is a thief and has buried his huge fortune in stolen goods under the big W.


What comes next is a comedy of errors, with the motorists all racing against each other to be the first to solve the Riddle and help themselves to the riches.


In the end, they are all duped and end up in prison. Instead of sharing the wealth. And the police officer tricks them and takes it all for himself.

#6. The Goonies (1985)

The Goonies (1985)

This movie must have been everyone’s favorite growing up. What’s cooler than searching for a buried pirate treasure with your best buddies.

After discovering a hidden map in their attic, a group of friends follow the directions of One Eyed Willy in the hope that if they have enough money, they could prevent the demolition of their homes and the development of a posh golf course. They navigate through a cave full of booby traps, all while being chased by a gang of crooks.

#5. The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)

Set in the Wild West, two Americans head to Mexico in the hope of finding work. After receiving their first pay,  a grumpy old prospector tempts them by mentioning there is still gold in the surrounding hills.

After fending off a bandit attack, the three managed to mine enough gold to live out the rest of their lives in decadent luxury and comfort.

The story is a lesson that trust and greed do not go hand in hand as bad luck befalls the group when they start suspecting each other of stealing the riches.

#4. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)

An aspiring archaeologist receives a diary from his famous adventurer father, containing an ambiguous map and strange clues pointing to the location of the Holy Grail.


He is not the only one after the prize as a group of Nazis are also on the Hunt with dreams of using the relic for a more nefarious use. Taking over the world entering a new era for their master race.


The film won the Academy Award for Best sound effects editing while Sean Connery received a Golden Globe for Best supporting actor.

#3. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl  (2003)

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl  (2003)

The film that started a franchise a tale of cursed Aztec gold, love, and a bunch of undead skeletal Pirates.

A disgraced pirate captain teams up with an apprentice blacksmith to rescue the governor’s daughter from cursed Pirates and gets back his beloved ship in the process.


Unlikely allies sailing the high seas swashbuckling fights a love story and a ton of comedy makes this one of the standouts of the genre. The movie won a total of 27 awards.

#2. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

An archeology professor is hired by the government after finding a golden statue deep in the jungle of South America.

His skills and know-how are needed to locate the biblical Ark of the Covenant, which holds the Ten Commandments and the power of God himself.


The Nazis are also in the hunt for the artifact, believing its power can help them achieve world domination. Raiders of the Lost Ark was listed as one of the ten best films of the year by the National Board of Review.


The movie was rated at eight four on a scale of ten on IMDb website and received a Metascore of 85 on Metacritic.

#1. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

A gunslinger and a notorious outlaw run a scam to collect the bounty multiple times, handing the outlaw in and then saving him from the hangman’s noose.

As their scam falls to pieces due to mutual distrust, they eventually turn against each other. But before pulling the trigger, the outlaw realizes his former partner knows the name of the tombstone, where a huge amount of stolen gold is buried.

As the two make their way for the treasure, they come across a ruthless bandit who, by all means, will try and keep the gold for himself.

The movie was rated an 8.8 on a scale of ten on the IMDb website and received a meta score of 90 on Metacritic.

This was our Top 10 Treasure Hunting Movies list. We have been able to compile a great list of the best treasure hunt movies. Do you agree with our list? If you have any suggestions or comments please shoot them down in the comments below. 


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