UNCHARTED is a fun filled masala entertainer

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Uncharted (English) Review {3.0/5} & Review Rating

UNCHARTED is the story of two men trying to find a lost treasure. The film begins 15 years ago. Nathan aka Nate is a child and his older brother is Sam Drake. Both try to steal a map belonging to the Magellan expedition. However, they are caught red-handed. Sam, however, escapes and promises Nate that he’ll find him. In present-day New York, Nate (Tom Holland) works as a bartender and even steals valuables from wealthy guests without suspicion. One day, he meets Victor Sullivan aka Sully (Mark Wahlberg) in the bar. Sully is a treasure hunter and has worked with Sam in the past on an expedition. Sully claims that Sam ghosted him after they both stole a valuable diary. Due to the Sam connection, Nate agrees when Sully asks him for help – to find the Magellan treasure. As per the legend and the contents in the diary, the treasure is hidden in a place that has been locked with the help of two keys. Sam already has one key. The other key is about to be auctioned in New York. Santiago Moncada (Antonio Banderas) is looking forward to buying this key at the auction. It was his family that funded the Magellan expedition. Hence, he feels that the treasure that Magellan has hidden belongs to him. He is aided by Jo Braddock (Tati Gabrielle), a ruthless mercenary. Sully plans to steal the key from the auction house with the help of Nate. The duo team up and manage to do the steal. At one point, Nate almost gets caught and Sully simply escapes as he had got the key without trying to help Nate. This makes Nate realize that Sully can’t be trusted. Nevertheless, they travel to Barcelona, Spain as that’s where the treasure is supposedly hidden. Here, they meet Chloe Frazer (Sophia Ali). Sully, here, learns that Chloe is the one who has the other key. She, too, warns him that Sully is not trustworthy. Meanwhile, Moncada reaches Barcelona and wants to find the treasure at any cost. As per the diary contents, the treasure is hidden under what seems to be a pine tree. Sully is puzzled as there are innumerable pine trees in Barcelona. However, Nate correctly guesses that the treasure is not under any tree but in the St. Mary of the Pine church. They enter the holy place and are able to find an underground passage that hopefully leads to the treasure. What happens next forms the rest of the film.

Uncharted

UNCHARTED is based on a video game of the same name. Rafe Lee Judkins, Jon Hanley Rosenberg and Mark D Walker’s story blends entertainment and adventure neatly. Rafe Lee Judkins, Art Marcum and Matt Holloway’s screenplay is simple and full of fun and thrilling moments. The chemistry between the male lead characters is also fleshed out neatly. However, a lot of developments defy logic. Also, it is a bhel puri of several films in this genre. Dialogues are simple and funny at places.

Ruben Fleischer’s direction is first-rate and does justice to the written material. Several such adventure films can be too fast-paced at times. UNCHARTED, however, is an exception. The director allows the narrative to grow organically. Yet, the film doesn’t seem to drag and he packs in a lot in 117 minutes. While the film gives viewers their money’s worth, it’ll also give them a déjà vu of films like RED NOTICE, INDIANA JONES, FAST & FURIOUS, NATIONAL TREASURE, etc. A few developments are very unconvincing while the way two important characters get a raw deal in the second half won’t be acceptable to many.

UNCHARTED starts off on a thrilling and unexpected note and sets the mood. The flashback portion begins in a non-dramatic manner. However, the auction house sequence sets the mood. The chase sequence in Barcelona is entertaining. The scene where the trio enters the church is quite lengthy and a gripping part of the film. The twist at the mid-point might be predictable for many. Nevertheless, one looks forward to what happens next. The mid-air drama is crazy. The finale is again predictable but the way things unfold makes it worth a watch. The film ends with the promise of a sequel.

Tom Holland effortlessly slips into the part of Nate. One is able to forget his iconic role of Spider-Man and that’s a huge victory. Mark Wahlberg plays a role that would remind one of Ryan Reynolds. However, he brings his own style and touch and it works. Sophia Ali puts up a confident act. She deserved more screen time. Tati Gabrielle is great in the role of the badass antagonist. Antonio Banderas is decent but his role seems to be a bit of a caricature.

Ramin Djawadi’s music is nothing extraordinary. Chung-hoon Chung’s cinematography is splendid and the aerial shots especially are very well shot. Shepherd Frankel’s production design is rich. The underground church set, especially, is magnificent. Anthony Franco and Marlene Stewart’s costumes are appealing. Action adds to the fun and is without any gore. VFX, as expected, is mind-blowing. Chris Lebenzon and Richard Pearson’s editing is slick.

On the whole, UNCHARTED is a fun-filled masala entertainer. It has got a wide release, as it took advantage of the lack of other movies hitting cinemas this week. At the box office, it has a chance to score due to its mass appeal and Tom Holland’s casting.



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