Column | ‘Uncharted’: Lost riches await in this modern-day treasure hunt film

By Lucy Bridges, Staff Writer

The adventure-seeking film “Uncharted” was released to the public in February of 2022. Directed by Ruben Fleischer, the movie portrays a worldwide treasure hunt featuring dangerous enemies, life-threatening obstacles and a charmingly funny duo between characters Nathan Drake, played by Tom Holland, and Victor Sullivan, played by Mark Wahlberg.

The movie stars increasingly popular actor Holland and ’90s star Wahlberg, who rose to fame for being in ’90s hip-hop group Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch. Other notable cast members include Sophia Ali, Tati Gabrielle and Antonio Banderas. 

“Uncharted” is based on a series of adventure and treasure-hunting video games of the same name, developed by Naughty Dog and first released in 2007. 

“Uncharted” takes on a style of a brotherly relationship between Nate and Victor (Sully), both characters presenting a sly, quick-witted and challenging personality, which gets them both into — and out of — trouble. Nate and Sully engage initially through their connection to Nate’s brother Sam, who left when Nate was 10 years old but helped Victor attempt to locate the treasure of explorer Ferdinand Magellan. 

One of the highlights of “Uncharted” is the dialogue between the characters. The drama of fighting for the treasure is balanced by the humorous brotherly bickering between Nate and Sully, making their characters intentionally charming.  

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“Uncharted” was made decades after commonly known treasure hunting, hero-focused films like “The Goonies,” “Indiana Jones” and “Jumanji”, but presents a modern witty, diverse and engaging plotline. Female characters Chloe and Jo, played by Sophia Ali and Tati Gabrielle, challenge the stereotypes of women in adventure movies, and push the boundaries of typical adventure movie plot lines. 

Fleischer made directorial decisions based on character emotion. Soft lighting in dark sets is used during scenes of emotion or turmoil. Sentimental props, like Nate’s postcards from his brother, are used to solve the mystery of the treasure. The audience is able to engage in the film, acting as another treasure hunter trying to uncover the mystery. 

Like many other action-packed adventure movies, the scoring of the film is crucial to maintaining audience anticipation and excitement. Scored by Ramin Djawadi, “Uncharted” incorporates a diverse amount of music, heightening emotions of suspense, anticipation, sadness, love and adventure. 

The locations utilized to shoot “Uncharted” add to the mystery and adventure of the story as Nate and Sully move from place to place, unsure of what clues will actually lead them to their end goal. The movement between different settings helps the plot flow with excitement, keeping the audience on their toes. The film ends on a cliffhanger, setting Nate and Sully up for a second exciting adventure. 


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