was pleasantly surprised with The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, as I haven’t been the biggest fan of director Jon Turtletaub’s National Treasure opuses. However this fantasy of rival sorcerers (Nicolas Cage, the good; Alfred Molina, the bad) who keep their feud going for centuries (over a beautiful woman—what a surprise) manages to mostly enchant from beginning to end.
Cage is in good, subdued, extremely likable form as Balthazar, a sorcerer in modern-day Manhattan looking for the true successor to Merlin, and finding him in an intelligent but awkward college student Dave Stutler (Jay Baruchel) It turns out that Dave is the only sorcerer capable of vanquishing Morgana LaFey and saving the world-only he’s a little reluctant (and a little hapless) about acquiring his quite formidable powers-and he’s got the hots (actually, he really loves) a fellow student and radio DJ (Teresa Palmer), which tends to interfere with learning the tools of the sorcery trade. The chase is on throughout a well-utilized Manhattan, as the evil Molina wants to destroy the good sorcerers, release the evil Morgana (Cage has got her trapped) and annihilate mankind. The special effects are effective; Molina contributes fine villainy; Teresa Palmer makes an appealing damsel who helps save the day (no shrinking violet, she); however it took time for Baruchel to grow on me. In fact at the beginning, he was more than a little irritating. However I warmed to him as the movie progressed, and by the end I was pulling for him to get the girl and prove himself worthy of Cage’s respect.