Sony has released the first official trailer for the Uncharted movie, starring Tom Holland as the terminally henley-wearing rogue Nathan Drake. Movies based on video games don’t have the best track record, of course, but it nonetheless looks pretty fun.
Uncharted spent about a decade trapped in development hell, cycling through directors and writers faster than a Star Wars spin-off. When it showed up again a few years ago for real, Deadline reported that it would be rewritten as a prequel to the games. After watching the trailer, uh, yeah, no. This flick is definitely not in the same canon as the games. (That’s not how Drake and Sully meet! Also: Where moustache?)
Still, the film clearly draws inspiration from the games it’s based on, lifting set pieces and in some cases near frame-for-frame sequences from the games. From the looks of it so far, it seems like Uncharted director Ruben Fleischer really knows his source material. Here are seven references you may have missed in the Uncharted trailer.
Drake’s family ring
Drake’s “sic parvis magna” family ring is prominently featured in the first and third Uncharted games. Oddly, when it shows up in the Uncharted trailer, Sully’s dialogue indicates that it’s tied to Drake’s brother Sam, who isn’t even mentioned until 2016’s Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. IMDB doesn’t currently list anyone cast as Sam in the film. Given the nature of tentpole films to treat the most minor casting news as a major spoiler, the door’s still open for Sam to show up in some way or another — possibly, if nothing else, in an end-credits stinger.
These fucking things!
If you’ve played an Uncharted game, it’s happened to you. You’re moseying along in some decrepit dungeon, probably trying to crack the code on a maddeningly vague environmental puzzle, and then… click! Arrow to the face. The movie presumably operates on movie rules (zero game overs) rather than video game rules (infinite game overs), so Holland’s Drake will probably dodge it at the last second with superhuman reflexes. And that’s when everyone figures out Drake was really Spider-Man the whooooole time.
The cargo plane from Uncharted 3
Leaked footage of this clip made the rounds yesterday. That’s lifted directly from a midpoint scene in Uncharted 3, right down to the guy who loses his grip and cartwheels 10,668.00 m to his doom. (Hey, at least Holland doesn’t fire off a snarky, arguably cruel, “See ya!” the same way Nolan North’s Drake does in the game.)
It’s also more evidence that Uncharted the movie is separate from Uncharted the games, unless you’re willing to believe that Drake found himself in this exact same scenario twice in one life.
The pirate ship from Uncharted 4
In the pre-trailer trailer, you can catch a glimpse of a pirate ship in an underground cavern. (You can also see it in the regular-trailer trailer but I wanted an excuse to point out how ridiculous it is that film studios now start trailers with a sizzle reel.) That bears an uncanny resemblance to the pirate ship in an underground cavern that serves as the final setpiece of Uncharted 4. Expect a sword fight as the thing goes up in flames, folks.
In the Uncharted trailer, Sully and Drake meet at a swanky cocktail lounge in Manhattan, with Drake shaking cocktails behind the bar. To my knowledge, Drake has never tended bar in an Uncharted game (though there is an IRL cocktail from social media sensation Tipsy Bartender called Drake’s Deception: ginger beer, goldschlager, and high-proof rum, then set it aflame). And none of the games spend a second in Manhattan.
Still, bars have long played a role in Uncharted games. Recall the opening sequence of Uncharted 3, when Drake and Sully beat up a bunch of dudes in a London pub before getting “shot.” Or how about later in the game, during the prequel chapter, which shows how a younger Sully and Drake actually met: in a downtrodden watering hole in Cartagena. And, of course, there’s the exclusive auction level from Uncharted 4, seemingly lifted for the film here, where you can catch a glimpse of…
The Saint Dismas Cross from Uncharted 4
Or, well, something that could be the Saint Dismas Cross from Uncharted 4. Drake and Sam spend the first act of that game searching for a cross-shaped religious artefact that holds instructions to find pirate treasure halfway around the globe. There are some aesthetic differences (the film’s cross is jewelled, while the one in the game is dusty and has a mould of some dude on it), but the trailer lingers enough on the relic to suggest that it’ll play an equally significant role in the film, too.
With the Uncharted movie coming out this month, folks are already frothing at the mouth for what’s to come. Considering the film is set before the games, many are saying that Tom Holland seems like a great fit for the Nathan Drake role, despite his late discovery of the series. Safe to say that when Uncharted does hit the big screen, your friends here at Kotaku will be zooming in to review.
The Uncharted movie will be releasing in cinemas on February 17th, 2022.