Nathan

For many, including myself, Uncharted is a game franchise near and dear to my heart. I discovered the game just a few years ago when I was scrolling through the PlayStation store and saw Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection on sale. The pack included the first three games of the series.

The second I began the first Uncharted, Drakes Fortune, I became instantly hooked on watching the life and adventures of Nathan Drake play out. From there, I went on to beat the collection and buy the fourth and final game. The fourth game served as a conclusion to the series and the perfect stopping point for Drake's story titled A Thief's End.

For all these reasons, when I saw the trailer for an Uncharted movie, I instantly had mixed feelings and thoughts about what I just saw. Up to the release of this movie on February 18, my friends had to listen to me complain about how I was scared it would ruin the story. After seeing the movie, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised with how it turned out.

I will begin by saying that no video game movie is perfect and that fact stands true with this film. The movie has had mixed reviews with a 6.7 on IMDb but a 39% on Rotten Tomatoes. I feel that the reason I went into the theater and left in a positive mood, unlike many Uncharted fans, is that I went with the mindset of this movie not being canon to the story of the video games. I told myself this is a different Nathan than the one you knew and a brand new storyline.

These low hopes I set for the movie left me surprised at how many things it got right. I don’t feel that Tom Holland was the right choice to play Nathan Drake, but they had him act out so many small details of Drakes personality that they made it work. One very minuscule but unique aspect of Drake is that he spouts history facts for minutes straight even while being shot at it or beaten up. Several times during the movie, he goes on five-minute-long tangents of a history lesson no one asked for, just like Drake from the games. Tom Hollands fighting style mirrored the games precisely with him being tossed around a room like crazy until Drake finds an object to fight back with or finds a way to run.

There are odd and unnecessary choices made to the storyline straying from the games, mainly Nathan Drakes brother being a focal point. Meanwhile, in the game's lore, Drake's brother Sam is a reveal saved for the last game in the series. While this bugged me the whole movie, several scenes would appear that made me appreciate how much they did get right.

The movie opens with a helicopter dropping all of its cargo, with Nathan Drake falling with it just as every game begins with a crashing boat, train or plane. Then in another scene, Drake takes cover from gunfire and maneuver around a room set up exactly like a level from the game. One scene of the movie focuses on Drake and his partner Sully, pulling a heist from an auction playing out almost identically to its counterpart in Uncharted 4.

At the end of the day, this movie is like the games in a lot of ways, from the set design resembling levels, characters keeping similar traits and the thrill of a search for treasure. The movie still does have a handful of problems that I can not deny, including cast choices and messing with the already perfect timelines of the game. I feel that for a movie like Uncharted if you can separate the game from the movie and consider them two separate pieces of media, it is worth the watch.

So if you are in the mood for a fun adventure movie or have any nostalgia from the games, pull out your map and compass and chart course for the theater nearest you.

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