The long-awaited film Uncharted received poor reviews, but here’s how the film became a box office success despite the critical reception.
Sony’s Live Action Unexplored The film became a huge box office hit despite appalling reviews. The video game movie starring Tom Holland as Nathan Drake has long been shrouded in skepticism based on the decision not to adapt one of Naughty Dog’s acclaimed games and instead tell an original prequel story. This left Unexplored in the position of potentially being another failed attempt at a video game movie franchise, especially after critical reviews arrived. However, Holland’s film still became a box office success despite the appalling reviews.
Video game movies have a terrible history in Hollywood, so much so that many have subscribed to the belief that there is a curse of video game movies. There are older examples of video game movies receiving critical review, such as Super Mario Bros. or that of Angelina Jolie grave robber. Although there has also been some success in recent years thanks to films like Pokemon: Detective Pikachu and sonic the hedgehog get fresh notes on Rotten Tomatoes, like mortal combat and Assassin’s Creed show how rarely video game movies receive accolades.
Due to the poor history of video game movies with reviews, Unexplored was against the wall to begin with. Many film counterparts struggled to launch a franchise because audiences tended not to show up to poorly received films. Even in a case like Warcraft, the highest-grossing video game film of all time, no sequels were made. With Sony already viewing Unexplored as a new film franchise, it looks like Tom Holland’s Nathan Drake will return. Here’s how the movie became a box office hit despite poor reviews.
Why Uncharted Reviews Are So Bad
The critical consensus for Unexplored was pretty bad from the start, although it got a little better as more reviews came in. At the time of this writing, Unexplored has a Rotten Tomatoes review rating of 40% with an average rating of 5.2 out of 10. However, the metrics are much worse for the platform’s top reviewers, as its rating drops to 22%. One of the main criticisms of Unexplored is the film’s failure to understand what made the games so special. It ranges from not taking enough risks with his set pieces to giving young Nathan Drake an origin story that isn’t convoluted enough.
Of course, many critics also note that this is not a direct adaptation of a single Unexplored video game, as Sony and director Ruben Fleischer instead mixed elements from various games and incorporated new aspects due to its prequel status. This created many problems for most reviewers, including some saying that Unexplored doesn’t understand who Nathan Drake is as a character. It also didn’t help that Mark Wahlberg’s Sully was far from Drake’s wise and loyal mentor from the games or that Elena was left out entirely. It was through the combination of frustrations with the lack of creativity and the aloofness of the games that gave Unexplored its bad reviews.
How much Uncharted made at the box office
Unexplored has always become an incredibly successful box office story for Sony. After wrapping up its second weekend of release, Tom Holland’s video game movie has grossed over $225 million worldwide. Unexplored The box office outperformed across the board, as it grossed around $83 million domestically in less than two weeks and around $143 million internationally. The film’s first international territory is the United Kingdom, which is an important market and where star Tom Holland comes from. The film is also set to receive a major bump in its box office tally once Unexplored released in China on March 14. It’s unclear exactly how much money he’ll make at the end of his run, but he should have no problem earning over $300 million at this rate.
The success for Unexplored The box office kicked off right away, as the film exceeded expectations for its opening weekend. Instead of launching to around $30 million over the four-day holiday weekend, the film grossed $51 million, resulting in Uncharted 2 talks. It is estimated that Unexplored saw a drop of less than 50% in its second weekend, which is pretty remarkable for most blockbusters. After being the world’s number one movie for two weekends, however, it will hit a major hurdle with The Batman. Warner Bros.’ The Batman reboot starring Robert Pattinson is expected to be one of the biggest movies of 2022 and gross over $100 million in its opening weekend. Unexplored should continue to find business as a blockbuster alternative to the 3-hour superhero cop movie, but Tom Holland will no longer be the biggest star in town.
Why Uncharted’s Bad Reviews Didn’t Hurt Its Box Office
Despite Unexplored poor reviews, the film’s success at the box office did not slow down. This could be attributed to a few different factors. The first, and arguably most important, is the perfect timing of Unexplored exit in terms of capitalizing on the popularity of Tom Holland. The young actor has been in the pop culture spotlight for the past few months, thanks to Spider-Man: No Coming Home Release. Since his third solo Marvel Cinematic Universe film grossed over $1.8 billion worldwide and is one of the highest-rated comic book movies of all time, people everywhere have been eager to see more from Holland. Unexplored liberating as Spider-Man: No Coming Home the box office started to slow gave everyone another chance to see Tom Holland but in a new franchise.
It also helped Unexplored because the film was released when there was little competition at the box office. Apart from Spider-Man: No Coming Homenewer versions like Death on the Nile, Fooled forever, and more didn’t have much resistance to compete with the video game movie. It was also a great advantage for Unexplored that it is a known IP address with a strong fan base. Even though the reviews were terrible, they probably wanted to see the movie for themselves and form their own opinion. At the very least, they’d want to see what the beloved games might look like live, even if the entire movie didn’t live up to the quality of the games.
Is Uncharted better than the bad reviews suggest?
The box office success of Unexplored proves that people around the world still greatly appreciate the movie despite what the critics have said. Rotten Tomatoes also reflects this, as the viewership is 90% fresh. The film also received a relatively positive B+ rating from CinemaScore. All this suggests that Unexplored isn’t as bad as the reviews have said, though that’s up for debate. The criticisms leveled at the film aren’t entirely misplaced and rather indicate how the film could have been even better. These should be things that Sony is looking to improve with Uncharted 2. While the first film is certainly safe in some ways and nothing groundbreaking for a blockbuster, it’s still a relatively fun adventure with heart-pounding action starring one of Hollywood’s rising stars. So even if Unexplored was potentially unfairly maligned, box office success should mean there will be another Nathan Drake movie, which will hopefully be well received across the board.
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