Uncharted Review

Uncharted Review: Charm, Spectacle, & High-Octane Thrills

A tumultuous development period beginning in 2008 has finally come to fruition as Columbia Pictures finally released its adaptation of the popular video game series Uncharted. This movie has been thrown around for so long that when discussions first began, Holland had not started his cinematic acting career, and Wahlberg was attached to portray Nathan Drake. About 14 years later, Holland is one of the most successful stars working in Hollywood, and he helps make this film work. His reputation as Spider-Man may have the naysayers doubting his ability to portray Nathan, an older character in the video games. Still, Holland brings every bit of his charm and quips to the role while dedicating himself to the action and stunt work at unprecedented levels.

The film opens in medias res with Nathan in the sky, climbing on top of crates to try and jump back onto the cargo plane in a thrilling action sequence straight out of Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception. Next, the movie flashes back to Nathan’s childhood, and we learn of his relationship with his older brother, Sam. Sam sneaks away to explore the world and promises his younger brother that he will come back for him, setting up the heart and soul of the movie as everything Nathan does is in search of Sam.

After Sully approaches Nathan and the story is set in motion, what follows is a series of enjoyable scenes of action, adventure, and double-crosses that all feel inspired by other works. For example, a sequence at an auction gives off Mission: Impossible vibes down to the reversible jacket. In addition, there are globetrotting scene transitions that pay homage to the Indiana Jones movies. Although these scenes add to the generic quality of the film, the movie executes everything in an enjoyable fashion.

The movie has the backstabs you would expect and the humor and charm a film like this needs. Holland is magnetic as Nathan, and while Wahlberg is charming in his portrayal of Sully, he feels more as if he is playing himself rather than embodying the character from the games. Because of this, the film may be polarizing to fans of the Uncharted video games, as this movie feels more like it’s paying homage to the games rather than serving as a direct adaptation of the source material. Antonio Banderas is excellent, but he ultimately feels underutilized in the film as Sophia Ali and Tati Gabrielle round out the supporting cast and do serviceable jobs in their roles.

Despite the film’s issues, including a second act that drags a little, Uncharted is a solid, delightful movie. The final act offers every bit of the high-octane thrills the genre is supposed to provide and does so in a wickedly fun sequence involving helicopters and ships. Ruben Fleischer, who previously directed Venom and Zombieland, does a fine job with this movie, given his experience in fun action blockbusters. Still, it is pretty easy to see how another director could have made the movie better, preferably one with more style and passion for the games. Nevertheless, this is a quick and easy diversion worth checking out for fans of video game movies and these two likable stars.

SCORE: 7/10

As ComingSoon’s review policy explains, a score of 7 equates to “Good.” A successful piece of entertainment that is worth checking out, but it may not appeal to everyone.


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