Review by Lauryn Angel
I’m going to start this review of Uncharted by saying that I have never played the games the movie is based on, and therefore have no preconceived ideas about the character of Nathan Drake or who should play him or what age he is supposed to be. I went into this film hoping for a fun action flick, and that’s exactly what I got. It’s a little bit National Treasure, a little bit Pirates of the Caribbean, and it even reminded me a little of The Goonies.
The movie opens in medias res with an action piece that looked great in IMAX, with Tom Holland’s Nate Drake fighting bad guys whilst suspended from an airplane. Before that scene is resolved, the action jumps back fifteen years to a younger Nate and his brother at the point when they become separated; then the film jumps to Nate before his current adventure begins. These jumps give us a quick set-up of Nate’s character and abilities, so we better see how his current job as a bartender is a waste of his potential.
Victor “Sully” Sullivan (Mark Wahlberg) seems to think so, too, as he recruits Nate for an expedition to recover lost pirate gold. To complicate matters, Santiago Moncada (Antonio Banderas) is also out to recover the treasure – a treasure he believes is rightfully his, since his ancestors funded the Magellan’s expedition, from which the treasure originated.
Uncharted is definitely not a cinematic masterpiece, but it’s a fun movie. It’s a great blend of adventure and comedy, and while there isn’t a romance per se, there is quite a bit of sexual tension between Sully and his rival, Braddock (Tati Gabrielle, showing off her martial arts skills) and a potentially budding romance between Nate and some-time ally Chloe Frazer (Sophia Ali). It was great to see Tom Holland in an action film that didn’t involve a superhero suit, and Mark Wahlberg was great as his hardened mentor – although as a fellow Gen-Xer, I have to say that the jokes about Sully being old got, well, old really quickly. Antonio Banderas clearly had a good time with the character of Santiago Moncada; if he’d had a mustache, he definitely would have twirled it.
Ultimately, if you go in with an open mind and low expectations, you’ll likely be pleasantly surprised by Uncharted, as I was.