Year of release: 2010
Director: Jon Turteltaub
Stars: Nicolas Cage, Alfred Molina, Jay Baruchel, Teresa Palmer, Monica Bellucci, Toby Kebbell, Alice Krige, Omar Benson Miller, Jake Cherry
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 2
Synopsis:After the incredibly successful "National Treasure" films, director Jon Turteltaub reunites with his lead actor from those films, Nicolas Cage, and tackles the classic Disney story of the magician and his apprentice (which was in Disney's "Fantasia"). The film follows the story of Balthazar, a magician who was trained by Merlin himself and who has been looking for a young man through centuries, a chosen one who will be able to defeat the dark forces of magic embodied by Morgana and Horvath (once one of Balthazar's best friends). Once Balthazar discovers Dave, a physics wiz, he tries to convince him that he is indeed the chosen one, much to Dave's dismay and surprise. It's up to Balthazar and Dave to protect the world of the dark forces that are approaching.
Jon Turteltaub tries really hard to imbue his film with a right dose of humor, magic and bewilderment, but sadly this film fails on most of those levels. The screenplay as usual, tackles the sweet loner/loser with low self-esteem, who loves the beautiful young woman and who through sheer persistence, against all odds, comes to realize his worth, save the world and get the girl. Nothing really new, nothing really innovative. The film tries to compensate that through impressive special effects, but even that ends up being quite underwhelming to sustain a story that is unoriginal. Nicolas Cage again proves his poor choice of roles - another mediocre performance to add to his array of walk through in big budget films of no interest (namely "Gone in Sixty Seconds", "National Treasure" and so forth). Jay Baruchel adds nothing to this film - he basically repeats the awkward young man routine he did for "Knocked Up". The only actors to actually walk away with some charm are the always reliable Alfred Molina and the funny Tobty Kebbell. A very mediocre film.