What Uncharted Gets Right That So Many Video Game Movies Get Wrong


The movie takes a similar approach, doing the games justice while adding new ideas to the fold at the same time. But what makes the movie so spot-on is that it recognizes the Indians Jones inspiration in the games and feeds into it, which makes sense considering it’s all rooted in cinema. As much as Fleischer and company have paid tribute to the Uncharted series, they have also sneakily delivered a modern take on Indiana Jones. Future game adaptations should follow suit and make sure to understand what inspired the developers to make the game they did in the first place.

Make a Good Movie, Not a Video Game Movie

There’s a good chance that a large portion of Uncharted‘s audience have no idea that it’s based on a video game at all. This is a good thing! In most cases, a video game movie shouldn’t call too much attention to its polygonal roots. Little nods and references here and there are great, but they shouldn’t serve as constant distractions. The movie’s Nolan North cameo is a perfect “if you know, you know” reference that winks at fans but isn’t so disruptive that newcomers to the franchise are left wondering who the hell that random guy was on the beach.

The cargo plane scene is the most direct reference to the games. The movie version is quite similar to the original set piece, with Nate dangling from cargo netting thousands of feet in the sky as baddies get pelted by heavy objects hurtling out of the open cargo door. While fans will definitely recognize that it’s essentially ripped straight from the games, it still works well as a movie action scene and is incorporated into the story in a way that makes sense.

To be fair, the Uncharted series is inherently cinematic and translates well to the big screen, making it easier to adapt than most. The fact that Detective Pikachu and the Sonic the Hedgehog movies are live-action and managed to find success at the box office is impressive because they had to take creative approaches to their respective source materials. still, Uncharted deserves credit for focusing on the story it’s telling rather than trying to mimic the games.

Build Toward the Future

The nice thing about adapting a long-running video game series to screen is that it’s already proven to have staying power as a franchise. Uncharted takes advantage of the series’ tenure by including a nifty post-credits scene that hints at what future big screen installations could look like, with Nate and Sully more closely resembling their digital counterparts, embroiled in a tense stand-off with a shady character named Gage over a “Nazi treasure map.” There’s also the reveal that Sam’s alive in some prison and has been writing stacks of postcards to his brother Nate.

It’s crystal clear that the filmmakers intend to make a sequel, and they’ve done a great job giving audiences a glimpse of what they have in store. Judging from the scene with Gage, the sequel could very well fall more in line with the tone and look of the games, with Holland even uttering Drake’s famous “Oh, crap” one-liner for good measure. It’s a tantalizing cliffhanger that offers some shameless fan service that definitely belongs on the side of the credits that it’s on. There’s no official word on if a sequel will be coming, but the post-credits scenes do a fine job of setting one up.

Leave a Comment