Movie Review: Uncharted

Natalie Colarossi, Assistant Layout Designer

Uncharted is a fun and fast-paced action movie based on the award winning video game series. 

Uncharted follows Nathan Drake (Tom Holland), a New York City bartender and former orphan with a talent for stealing and scheming. Deserted by all family members at a young age, Nathan studied history and became amazed with the lost treasure of Magellan, a prize of 5 billion dollars in gold. He suddenly crosses paths with Victor “Sully” Sullivan (Mark Wahlberg), an old friend of his brothers and a hunter of the same treasure. They set off on their journey picking up clues and solving puzzles to find something deemed lost forever. They meet more hunters on the way and race to the gold and to find Nathan’s brother in a battle of wits and ancient history. 

Released exclusively in theaters on February 19th, 2022 with a running time of 1hr 56 min, director Ruben Fleischer brought the Uncharted video games to the big screen in the first film adaption of the game. The lack of emotion in the game also transferred to the big screen, as it lacked any components of reality. The characters were written as impersonal, more like avatars than people. With such a great cast more focus should have been placed on the details given to the characters.

Tom Holland and Mark Wahlberg were the stars of Uncharted, but the supporting cast was nothing to overlook. Antonio Banderas took on the role of Santiago Moncada, a member of an elite family who believes the gold was his birthright. He was the villain and another member in the hunt desperate for the treasure. Yet Banderas had very little screen time, and a very insignificant part in the ending. Other supporting roles include Chloe Frazer (Sophia Taylor Ali), a character who simply had no personality, and Braddock (Tati Gabrielle), an acquaintance of Sully with constant suspicion of his schemes. 

The setting was everywhere from the Philippines to New York City to the middle of the ocean, but there was little focus on the different places. They were glanced over in every scene, not played into the plot. 

Uncharted has flaws, however the comedic duo of Tom Holland and Mark Wahlberg makes everything better. Nathan Drake and Sully learn to complete the heist working alone is not an option. They cannot beat Moncada to the treasures by themselves, so moviegoers see more of Holland’s and Wahlberg’s charm and charisma due to their characters’ forced proximity. 

The movie fits the genre of action, as they jump out of planes and fly from ceiling lamps in every other scene. The action fits the plot and is acted out very well. With a Pg-13 rating there is no shortage of danger and violence, but the movie was aimed towards families with nothing too inappropriate. 

Uncharted was on point with the video games they were based off; including the same characters, plot, and theme. Video game to movie adaptations have a very poor track record because of the difficulty to lengthen and build the video game to reach the amount of detail needed in a movie, still Uncharted has done amazing at the box office. According to Variety, Uncharted earned globally $226.4 million and it didn’t even open in China yet. Uncharted did better than expected in theaters, maybe because of the massive success of the video game or the popularity Tom Holland received from the Spider-Man movies, rightfully so. 

This movie has positives and negatives, but overall it’s an interesting watch. The star-filled cast and international setting could’ve been utilized more. There also could be more attention to detail of the characters, but if you are going to watch a fast-paced, light and comedic action film, Uncharted would work.