In 1988, prospector Kenny Wells (Matthew McConaughey) presides over the faltering family business - Washoe Mining Corporation - in Reno, Nevada. Kenny and his associates sweat blood and tears from their makeshift office, the local bar, where Kenny's doting girlfriend Kay (Bryce Dallas Howard) serves drinks.
One alcohol-fuelled night, Kenny has a dream about Indonesia and, on a whim, he pawns Kay's watch to fly east, where he hopes to persuade geologist Michael Acosta (Edgar Ramirez) to join him on a madcap quest into the jungle.
Kenny invests every last cent to drill core samples and send them down river for analysis in the hope that gold lurks beneath the jungle canopy. Miraculously, one sample shows traces of the precious metal and it seems that Kenny and Michael have stumbled upon an untapped reserve worth millions of dollars.
Gold wisely invests in a charismatic leading man, capable of polishing an uneven plot to a dull glister.Three stars