7/17/2010

Movie Review: The Sorcerer's Apprentice (2010)


In the age of Harry Potter wannabes, The Sorcerer's Apprentice is a long shot.

Set in New York city, college geek Dave (Jay Baruchel) ends up as the apprentice to master sorcerer Balthazar Blake (Nicholas Cage). As it turns out, Dave is the "Prime Merlinian," the next greatest sorcerer of the world whose mission is to save the world from evil. Making things more difficult for Dave are baddies Horvath (Alfred Molina) and his mistress Morgana, who will stop at nothing to destroy the young apprentice. Over the course of his magical training, Dave struggles mightily and but eventually gets it together.

The film has good special effects and likable performances from Cage and Baruchel, but the generic story is very hard to ignore. Almost nothing new is added to the table that the Harry Potter films crammed like an all-you-can-eat buffet. The only notable "innovation" for me is the combination of plausible pseudo-scientific explanation to magic and sorcery.

I've read that The Sorcerer's Apprentice is based on the segment of the same name in the 1940's film Fantasia. I'm sure if this version was released then, it would have been lauded for its originality.


Rating: 2.5/5


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