‘Spider-Man’ star adds a lot to all his scenes in ‘Uncharted’
Up! In the sky!
It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s …
The English actor, who performs with an impeccable American accent, has soared as New York City hero Spider-Man in three movies. Now he’s up in the heavens again as another American action hero in “Uncharted,” which topped the box office last weekend with a $44 million gross — largely because it starred Tom Holland.
And he’s the reason you should see it.
The story is good but not great, and it isn’t exactly original. Based on the video game of the same name, “Uncharted” is about the search around the world for a pile of gold. And it’s connected with the voyage attributed to Ferdinand Magellan (who, as the movie noted, wasn’t actually the first person who sailed around the world).
There are some unexpected plot twists in the film directed by Ruben Fleischer, and actor Antonio Banderas adds some flair as a classic villain. But really, the best part of the movie is Mr. Holland and his chemistry with fellow star Mark Wahlberg. In fact, Mr. Holland has an uncanny ability to connect with every actor, and that’s the main reason, not the computer-generated effects or the aerial feats, that “Spider-Man: No Way Home” has stayed among the top three movies in the box office for two months.
As already seen in the trailers, “Uncharted” begins with Mr. Holland struggling not to fall from an airplane — without a parachute. It’s a long, long way down, and unlike Spider-Man, Mr. Holland’s character doesn’t have webbing to save him.
After that, Mr. Holland doesn’t get much time to rest. He’s running, jumping, fighting and trying not to fall at various locations.
In “Uncharted,” Mr. Holland stars as Nathan Drake, a street-smart kid who grew up in a boys’ home run by nuns. His brother Sam (Rudy Pankow) taught Nathan (played by Tiernan Jones in a flashback scene) at a young age how to steal, and as a young adult, Nathan works as a bartender with a knack for stealing valuable things from right under people’s noses.
One night Nathan meets Victor “Sully” Sullivan (Mr. Wahlberg), another thief who needs Nathan’s smarts to steal two gold crosses that serve as essential keys (literally) in the search for a map leading to ancient treasure, which, of course, is a lot of gold.
But everyone else wants that gold too, such as villains Santiago Moncada (Mr. Banderas) and Sully’s enemy Braddock (Tati Gabrielle).
Nathan and Sully partner with a third thief, Chloe Frazer, played effectively by Sophia Taylor Ali.
Nathan and Sully are clearly the thieves fans will root for, because there are moral lines they won’t cross. And despite their greed, they have a good heart.
Santiago and Braddock have no such scruples.
And Chloe? Can Nathan and Sully trust her? Can she trust them? Can Nathan and Sully trust each other?
The questions are asked early, but it’s the final part of the movie where “Uncharted” soars to its best heights. None of the details will be spoiled here.
As always in action films, be sure to watch for extra scenes. Here they’re mixed in with the start of the closing credits and suggest a sequel.
And with a $44 million gross in its first weekend, there’s little doubt there will be an “Uncharted 2.”
But hopefully before filming starts, Mr. Holland will get a chance to relax and plant both feet on the ground before soaring again.