Uncharted ventures into charted territory for video-game adapted movies, with a little treasure being left in its final act


Sam Mroz, Staff Writer

Coming off the cult rave that was Spiderman: No Way Home, Tom Holland rockets to numero uno for celebrity attention, with all eyes pointed towards his next Sony-branded story.

Uncharted sees Holland as the noted Nathan Drank, explorer at large tagging along with his personal finance/ entrepreneur, Victor Sullivan, played by Mark Wahlberg. As the two venture from continent to continent in search of the lost fortune amassed by historic explorer Ferdinand Magellan, with over five billion dollars’ worth of gold being lost to time, a string of rivals flow in and out of the unraveling treasure hunt, opposing the tag team of Nate and Sully with every step they take.

A connection that should feel more mentor and mentee, Wahlberg and Holland have a tough time selling the old master to young novice dynamic that the two characters had established within the inspired list of games. Holland’s background as everyone’s favorite neighborhood spider-dude has metaphorically branded him as the quirky teenager, and while he has begun to make leaps in exposing his other acting chops, it’s still hard to not expect the meekish side of Holland to slip through the cracks of his ruffled portrayal of Nate Drake.

Wahlberg’s run as Sully adheres to the standard of the character, being an older man who relies on Drake for his limbic skills more than anything but knowing of Wahlberg’s history as a spry man of fifty, it’s just hard to see him be held back by the reigns of his role. Throw some gray into that head of hair and we may just have something, but until then, seeing Wahlberg play an old man seems misplaced.

A story that boggles any pre-established mythos within the Uncharted world, the film takes the common detour that most video game inspired films do, adding more than is needed and/or helpful, and taking away things that may or may not make people genuinely happy when leaving the theater.

Whether the video game-to-movie formula will be cracked one day, we may never know, but for now, we must settle with these imperfect displays of gaming on the big screen, with the occasional spectacle thrown into the mix.

The movie definitely has something to offer, especially at its end when everything is moving as fast as a flying ship and one can only sit back and see what Tom Holland could hope to do with a 600-year-old cannon. One must endure two-thirds of the occasional fight scene and the attempt to develop a personality to the story to get to that point, but once the ball starts rolling, the wait can somewhat feel worth it.

Uncharted is unable to uncover the path to good video game movies, and while it doesn’t join the few successes in this genre, such as 2019’s Detective Pikachu or 2020’s Sonic the Hedgehog, it doesn’t fall so short to where it adds to the endless list of mistakes that this genre produces. The thieving world of Nathan Drake has potential, but we can only wait to see what new treasure awaits us and what adventures we may or may not see Holland and Wahlberg act out in the future!