Nicolas Cage (Gone in 60 Seconds, National Treasure) and Jay Baruchel (How to Train Your Dragon, Almost Famous) bring to life this classic Disney tale in a fun and exciting film. The basic story of The Sorcerer’s Apprentice follows one of three apprentices of Merlin who is charged with finding his eventual replacement. Balthazar (Cage) searches for centuries for the next Merlin, the Prime Merlinian. He has Merlin’s little dragon and if the person is right, that dragon animates and becomes a ring. Young Dave sends a quick love note on a field trip to see if a pretty girl wants to be friends or more than friends. She answers the note, leaves it on the bench and the wind sweeps it away. He chases it through New York City and it happens to land inside this run-down antiques shop. Balthazar owns this store and tries the dragon on Dave. It becomes the ring.
The movie continues when Dave (Baruchel) is 10 years older and one of the other original apprentices escapes from his own doll. Hovarth (Alfred Molina) wants to free the main villain, Morgana, from her doll. Trapped in this doll along with her are many of her successors and they are layered so several baddies end up getting freed before Morgana herself is released near the end of the movie. To complicate things a bit, Morgana is actually trapped in the third of Merlin’s apprentices, Veronica’s body. Balthazar LOVES Veronica and wishes to destroy Morgana to be able to have Veronica back.
The bulk of the film is Balthazar training Dave to work magic along with Hovarth trying to thwart them in their plans. Hovarth is also working to get Morgana released to cast a huge devastating spell called The Rising. The Rising would call all of the evil magic folk out of their graves and they would pretty much destroy life on Earth as we know it. Another point of complication is that Dave runs into his would-be childhood girlfriend, Becky (Teresa Palmer). He falls in love again and is striving to balance his feelings as well as the pressures of being the guy who needs to save the world. He and Balthazar have this in common although Dave doesn’t find out about it until very late in the movie.
They did a really good job recreating Mickey Mouse’s cleaning scene from Fantasia! I was really impressed with that. Dave was getting ready for his date with Becky and set the brooms and mops to start cleaning the lab and he headed up to take a shower. The fun ensues while the magicked cleaning apparatus begin doing their best to clean things up. The lab is filled with high voltage electrical equipment and you even see the outlets getting nervous about the water levels getting too close. They used the original music to score this great scene.
This is a great movie. I really enjoyed it. My seven-year old son, Wyatt, really liked it too. My only problem with it was that while the main character, Dave, was very smart and had incredible talents in physics and such, he was very nerdy. This was by design and it made sense for him to be that way. My problem was I felt like it was over-done. He did a lot of the cliche voices and mannerisms and it was a distraction. My final review is 4 pounds out of 5: ####