Anyone who has played or even seen footage of the Uncharted series can agree on one thing: it is one of the most gripping cinematic video game experiences of all time. It isn't just the fact that the hero, Nathan Drake, is a charismatic and likable adventurer or that the supporting characters feel lifted right out of a fun movie.
Each installment of the series is filled with incredible set pieces and action sequences that make you feel like you're part of a movie. It's a level of action that even the biggest budget blockbusters can only hope to attain. With news breaking that Tom Holland will play Nathan Drake in the Uncharted film hitting theaters on December 18, 2020, we decided to pick out the moments from the games that would translate best into epic scenes on the big screen.
10 Jet Skis
In the original Uncharted: Drake's Fortune, there are fun chapters where Nathan Drake and love interest Elena Fisher ride jet skis. On its own, it's not one of the most cinematic sequences in the game. They ramped up on those in the later installments of the franchise.
However, it is the kind of stuff that would translate well to screen. Watching Nathan drive a jet ski as Elena shoots random bad guys while sitting behind him sounds exhilarating. Throw in a bunch of explosions and big stunts in the water and you've got a winner.
9 The Brothers Drake
With youthful looking Tom Holland playing Nathan Drake, it's clear that they're going with an early story for the character. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End introduces Samuel Drake, Nathan's brother. One of the most significant moments we get with him sees the brothers breaking into a mansion.
Sometimes, it's not the action scenes that would be best in a film. A tense version of this break-in would be enjoyable to watch. It helps that this chapter does a lot to deliver exposition and background on the relationship between Nathan and Samuel. It's tailor-made for cinema.
One of the most challenging chapters in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is called "Locomotion." In it, Nathan does battle with too many enemies to count while navigating the unsteady rooftops of train cars. A gunfight on top of a moving train isn't anything new to an action movie.
But that's what makes this series so unique. They know when to throw in a wrench and be different. Just when Nathan builds momentum, here comes a helicopter that he has to shoot down. While it shoots back. And he's still on the speeding train! It would make for an incredible action scene.
This is a series that can dive into many different genres. One portion of Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception sees our hero out horseback riding in the desert. He and his companion run into trouble, having to fight off a hoard of enemies riding on motorcycles and caravans.
Things get wilder than you can imagine during this scene: Drake leaping back and forth between caravans and his horse. The hand-to-hand fight he has a big goon. A guy getting run over by a large vehicle when he has Nathan dead to rights. Victor Sullivan getting saved in the nick of time. Sounds like a great movie scene!
6 Train Climb
Never before has a tutorial level been so enthralling. At the start of Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, Nathan awakens a beaten and bloody mess. It turns out that he is sitting in a derailed train car that's dangling off a cliff. Nathan plummets down and hangs on by a thread.
Nathan has to find almost impossible ways to navigate his way to safety. He leaps, hops, and stumbles as he attempts to get to the top, all the while the rickety train is on the verge of falling into the abyss below. It threw players right into the excitement and would do the same for moviegoers.
5 Madagascar Car Chase
If there's one thing that can be cinematic gold, it's a good old fashioned car chase. Just watch Baby Driver and see what we mean. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End has a car chase that is begging for a visionary director to bring it to life. The pursuit happens in Madagascar, so it already has a great setting.
What makes it perfect for a film are the twisty streets they go through, the high stakes of trying to save Nathan's brother, and the seemingly unstoppable truck that is firing at Nathan, making it all impossible. Go online and find a video of the final few minutes of this scene to get your adrenaline pumping.
4 Meeting Sully
This is another case of a scene that would be perfect for Tom Holland. Though Nathan Drake is 15 when he meets Sully, you can age him up to 20 or so for the film. The meeting between these two characters is pivotal to the overall story because of how vital their bond is.
The first part of this scene is an exciting parkour-style chase where much bigger and more dangerous men pursue young Nathan. This was after he pickpocketed Sully, who was kind of impressed with the kid. But the big moment comes at the end when Nathan and Sully have a conversation. Played by the right actors, it could be captivating.
3 The Hotel Shangri-La
Another classic sequence involving a deadly helicopter. From Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, this scene sees Nathan and Chloe search for the temple that holds the secret of the Cintamani. On the way there, they are hunted down by a helicopter while at the Hotel Shangri-La.
The helicopter rips through the walls and floors of the building. Nathan does battle with various goons in a gunfight and in hand-to-hand combat. This all happens as the building is being torn apart and collapsing. It's incredible to watch Nathan risk his life in both the fight and as he dangles from the crumbling pieces of the building.
2 Cargo Plane
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception is filled with thrilling action sequences. One of the most impressive came on a cargo plane. After Nathan emerges as a stowaway on a flight, he goes right into the action. The struggle leads to the back of the plane opening, creating a new level of tension.
Nathan falls out of the plane and has to grab onto a crate at the last second. Goons shoot at him as he hangs on and some of them fall out of the aircraft themselves. Ultimately, the plane blows up and Nathan is launched out into the desert, attempting to grab onto any debris that may save him. On screen, this would be a sight to behold.
1 Sink Or Swim
This scene would be the most difficult to pull off in a movie, but it would be worth it. It's Nathan Drake's most death-defying stunt. A big fight on a giant ship is more than enough to captivate an audience. But as this one happens, the boat is swept up in a tsunami.
Nathan takes down goons as the ship sinks and fills up with water. At one point he dangles from a giant chandelier in a grand ballroom that is on its side. At another, he's racing against a wave coming behind him. Emotions range from terrifying to exhilarating to comedy to joy. This scene has everything you want from a film.