The Sorcerer's Apprentice (2010 film)

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The Sorcerer's Apprentice
Sorcerers apprentice poster.jpg
Promotional poster with original release date
Directed byJon Turteltaub
Produced byJerry Bruckheimer
Screenplay byMatt Lopez
Lawrence Konner
Mark Rosenthal
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (poem)
Story byDoug Miro
Carlo Bernard
Matt Lopez
StarringNicolas Cage
Jay Baruchel
Alfred Molina
Teresa Palmer
Monica Bellucci
Music byTrevor Rabin
Paul Dukas (symphonic poem)
CinematographyBojan Bazelli
Editing byWilliam Goldenberg
StudioWalt Disney Pictures
Jerry Bruckheimer Films
Saturn Films
Broken Road
Distributed byWalt Disney Studios
Motion Pictures
Release dates
  • July 14, 2010 (2010-07-14)
Running time109 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$150 million[1]
Box office$215,283,742[2]
 
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The Sorcerer's Apprentice
Sorcerers apprentice poster.jpg
Promotional poster with original release date
Directed byJon Turteltaub
Produced byJerry Bruckheimer
Screenplay byMatt Lopez
Lawrence Konner
Mark Rosenthal
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (poem)
Story byDoug Miro
Carlo Bernard
Matt Lopez
StarringNicolas Cage
Jay Baruchel
Alfred Molina
Teresa Palmer
Monica Bellucci
Music byTrevor Rabin
Paul Dukas (symphonic poem)
CinematographyBojan Bazelli
Editing byWilliam Goldenberg
StudioWalt Disney Pictures
Jerry Bruckheimer Films
Saturn Films
Broken Road
Distributed byWalt Disney Studios
Motion Pictures
Release dates
  • July 14, 2010 (2010-07-14)
Running time109 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$150 million[1]
Box office$215,283,742[2]

The Sorcerer's Apprentice is a 2010 American fantasy adventure film produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, directed by Jon Turteltaub, and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures, the team behind the National Treasure franchise. The film is named after the The Sorcerer's Apprentice segment in Disney's Fantasia (with one scene being an extensive reference to it), which in turn is based on the late 1890s symphonic poem by Paul Dukas and the 1797 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ballad.

Balthazar Blake (Nicolas Cage), a "Merlinian", is a sorcerer in modern-day Manhattan, fighting against the forces of evil, in particular his nemesis, Maxim Horvath (Alfred Molina), while searching for the person who will inherit Merlin's powers. This turns out to be Dave Stutler (Jay Baruchel), a physics student, whom Balthazar takes as a reluctant protégé. The sorcerer gives his unwilling apprentice a crash course in the art of science, magic, and sorcery, in order to stop Horvath and Morgana le Fay (Alice Krige) from raising the souls of the evil dead sorcerers ("Morganians") and destroying the world.

Plot[edit]

In AD 740, the mighty magician Merlin (James A. Stephens) has three apprentices. One, Maxim Horvath (Alfred Molina), betrays his master by joining forces with the evil sorceress Morgana le Fay (Alice Krige). Morgana mortally wounds Merlin before another apprentice, Veronica Gorloisen (Monica Bellucci), absorbs Morgana, body and soul, into her own body.

As Morgana tries to kill Veronica by possessing her from within, the third and final apprentice, Balthazar Blake (Nicolas Cage), stops her by imprisoning Morgana and Veronica in the "Grimhold", a magic prison in the shape of a nesting doll. Before dying, Merlin gives Balthazar a dragon ring that will identify the Prime Merlinian, Merlin's successor and the only one able to defeat Morgana. While he searches for his successor throughout history, Balthazar imprisons Morganians, sorcerers who try to release Morgana, including Horvath, into successive layers on the Grimhold.

In 2000, 10-year-old Dave Stutler (Jake Cherry), encounters Balthazar in a Manhattan antique store. When Balthazar gives Dave Merlin's dragon ring, the ring comes to life, and wraps itself around the boy's finger. When Balthazar goes to find the book of magic, Dave accidentally opens the Grimhold, releasing Horvath. While battling for possession of the Grimhold, Balthazar and Horvath are imprisoned in an ancient Chinese urn with a ten-year lock curse.

Ten years later in 2010, Dave (Jay Baruchel), now 20, is a physics student at New York University, and meets his childhood crush Becky (Teresa Palmer). The ten-year imprisonment curse of the urn ends, releasing Horvath and Balthazar. Horvath pursues Dave and the Grimhold. Balthazar rescues Dave, riding an animated steel eagle created from a Chrysler Building gargoyle.

Dave initially refuses to help Balthazar, having been under psychiatric care since their first meeting, until the elder agrees to leave after finding the Grimhold. They track the Grimhold to Chinatown, where Horvath has released the next Morganian, Sun Lok (Gregory Woo). Dave defeats Sun Lok, and Balthazar retrieves the Grimhold. Dave changes his mind, likes magic after all, and agrees to become Balthazar's apprentice. He also becomes romantically involved with Becky against Balthazar's wishes and advice.

Horvath enlists celebrity magician Drake Stone (Toby Kebbell) to get back the Grimhold. They attempt to kill Dave, but Balthazar saves him. Cued by Horvath, Dave demands to know the truth about Balthazar's quest. Balthazar reveals that Morgana is trapped in the Grimhold with Veronica. Morgana, free, would cast "The Rising" spell, to revive sorcerers from the dead and enslave mankind. Dave, the Prime Merlinian, a descendant of Merlin, will become powerful enough to cast spells without his ring, and is the only one who can stop her.

After he loses control of animated cleaning mops, Dave decides to give up on magic, until Becky changes his mind. He returns to his underground subway lab, just after Drake and Horvath try to kill Balthazar and steal the Grimhold. Horvath has no more use for Drake, casts a parasite spell, steals Drake's energy, life, and his magic ring.

Horvath releases the witch Abigail Williams (Nicole Ehinger), uses her to kidnap Becky, then steals her energy, life, and pendant. He threatens to kill Becky, forcing Dave to surrender the Grimhold and his ring. Balthazar then goes after Horvath in Battery Park, sure Dave, without his ring, will be killed.

Horvath releases Morgana from inside Veronica. Morgana begins the Rising spell while Horvath animates the Charging Bull sculpture to attack Balthazar. With Becky's help, Dave reaches Horvath and Morgana. Balthazar's eagle flies away with the Bull.

Balthazar takes Morgana, body and soul, from Veronica into himself, but being low on magic, Morgana escapes. Morgana tries to incinerate them, but Dave stops her, without the ring, proving he is the Prime Merlinian. Morgana shoots energy bolts and kills Balthazar.

Dave creates a Tesla coil with the square's lamp posts and powerlines, and destroys her. Dave revives Balthazar by starting his heart, so Balthazar and Veronica reunite. Dave and Becky kiss, and fly to France on Balthazar's eagle.

After the end credits, Horvath takes his hat from Balthazar's shop.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Lighting equipment parked on lower Broadway, Downtown
Commerce continues behind lighting equipment

The basic idea for the movie was mostly Nicolas Cage's, who wanted to explore a mystic world and play a character with magical powers, and following a suggestion by his producer friend Todd Garner, decided to make a feature length movie based upon the Fantasia segment of the same name.[7][8] On February 12, 2007, this film was announced by Disney.[9] References to the original animation include the scene where Dave animates broomsticks to clean his laboratory, and having Mickey Mouse's hat in the post-credits scene.[8]

The Sorcerer's Apprentice is set in New York City, and most scenes were shot on location, in places such as Washington Square Park and Chinatown's Eldrige Street. Dave's laboratory was filmed in either an abandoned subway station located under the New York City Hall or a studio recreation of it.[8] In the early morning hours of May 4, 2009, a Ferrari F430 being driven during filming of a chase sequence, lost control and careened into the window of a Sbarro restaurant in Times Square, injuring two pedestrians, one of whom was struck by a falling lamppost. Filming resumed the following night, when yet another accident occurred. The two accidents were blamed on rain making the roads slick.[10]

To make the magic more believable, it was decided to an emphasis of practical, on-set effects, such as making real fire, with fluids or flash powder being used for colored flames. To provide a lighting reference for the plasma bolts, the actors wore gloves with LED displays to make them glow before adding the computer-generated shot. For floating objects, they were either thrown with wires or held by stuntmen wearing green chroma key suits.[8]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

The film has received mixed reviews. Review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 42% based on 163 reviews, with an average score of 5.2/10. The critical consensus is: It has a likeable cast and loads of CGI spectacle, but for all but the least demanding viewers, The Sorcerer's Apprentice will be less than spellbinding.[11] Another review aggregator, Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating from 0-100 of top reviews from mainstream critics, calculated an average score of 46.[12]

Kirk Honeycutt of The Hollywood Reporter has said that "The Sorcerer's Apprentice is a tired relic of summer-movie cliches, clearly beaten to death by far too many credited writers."[13] Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert gave the film two and a half stars out of four and wrote "This is a much better film than <The Last Airbender>, which is faint praise, but it's becoming clear that every weekend brings another heavily marketed action "comedy" that pounds tens of millions out of consumers before evaporating".[14] In July 2010, Parade Magazine listed the film #1 on its list of "Biggest Box Office Flops of 2010 (So Far).[15]

Box office[edit]

The Sorcerer's Apprentice made an opening gross of $3,873,997 on its first day (Wednesday July 14, 2010). It finished at #3 on its first weekend with $17,619,622 behind Inception and Despicable Me in the U.S. and Canada and gained another $8,928,216 on its first weekend overseas (in 13 countries) for a worldwide opening of $26,547,841. On October 28, 2010, The Sorcerer's Apprentice closed at the box-office in the United States and Canada with $63,150,991 and, as of December 12, 2010, it has earned $152,132,612 in other countries totaling up to $215,283,603 worldwide. Besides the U.S. and Canada, other countries where it grossed more than $10 million were Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States ($13,630,194), France and the Maghreb region ($12,930,320) and Japan ($10,632,660).[16] Its largest overseas weekend was August 13–15, during which it grossed $14,091,169 in 42 countries. It occupies the fourth place on the all-time chart of Sword and Sorcery movies in the U.S. and Canada, and the third place on the same chart worldwide.[17]

Home media[edit]

It has sold 1,288,735 DVD units (equivalent to $21,609,680) since its release in DVD. Adding in its box-office revenue, the film's earnings sum up to $236,893,283.

Soundtrack[edit]

The score for this film was conducted and recorded by Trevor Rabin. It was released on July 6, 2010.[citation needed]

The Sorcerer's Apprentice
Soundtrack album by Trevor Rabin
ReleasedJuly 6, 2010
GenreFilm score
Length43:04
LabelWalt Disney
No.TitleArtistLength
1."Sorcerer's Apprentice"   3:14
2."Story of the Prime Merlinian"   4:02
3."Note Chase"   0:39
4."Dave Revives Balthazar"   2:41
5."Classroom"   1:25
6."The Urn"   1:39
7."The Grimhold"   1:39
8."Morgana Fight"   2:59
9."The Ring"   1:43
10."Walk in the Rain"   0:43
11."Merlin Circle"   2:01
12."Dave Has Doubts"   0:53
13."Becky and Dave on Rooftop"   1:24
14."Car Chase"   3:54
15."Seeing Veronica"   0:55
16."Story of Veronica"   1:44
17."Horvath Made Off With the Grimhold"   1:13
18."Kiss from Becky"   0:33
19."Bull Fight"   2:10
20."Balthazar Saves Veronica"   1:13
21."Sorcerer’s Apprentice Suite"   2:28
22."Fantasia Original Demo"   4:22
23."Secrets" (OneRepublic) 3:52

References[edit]

  1. ^ Fritz, Ben (July 15, 2010). "Movie projector: 'Inception' headed for No. 1, 'Sorcerer's Apprentice' to open in third". Los Angeles Times (Tribune Company). Retrieved July 15, 2010. 
  2. ^ "The Sorcerer's Apprentice (2010)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  3. ^ The Sorcerer's Apprentice - About the Film
  4. ^ a b c Kit, Borys (2009-03-03). "Alfred Molina puts spell on 'Apprentice'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2009-03-25. [dead link]
  5. ^ Graser, Marc (2009-04-19). "Kebbell joins Disney's 'Apprentice'". Variety. Archived from the original on 2009-12-10. Retrieved 2009-12-10. 
  6. ^ Graser, Marc (2009-05-14). "Monica Bellucci joins 'Sorcerer'". Variety. Archived from the original on 2009-12-10. Retrieved 2009-12-10. 
  7. ^ "How Nicolas Cage's Geeky Obessions Brought 'The Sorcerer's Apprentice' to Life". Yahoo!. July 2, 2010. Retrieved July 5, 2010. 
  8. ^ a b c d The Making of The Sorcerer's Apprentice. The Making of The Sorcerer's Apprentice DVD: Walt Disney Home Entertainment. 
  9. ^ Kit, Borys (February 12, 2007). "Dis has Cage conjured up for 'Sorcerer'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 10, 2009. [dead link]
  10. ^ "Cage stunt car in New York crash". BBC News. May 5, 2009. Archived from the original on December 10, 2009. Retrieved December 10, 2009. 
  11. ^ "The Sorcerer's Apprentice". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved July 13, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Sorcerer's Apprentice, The reviews at Metacritic.com". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 2010-07-19. 
  13. ^ Honeycutt, Kirk (July 09, 2010). "The Sorcerer's Apprentice -- Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2010-07-15. 
  14. ^ Ebert, Roger (July 13, 2010). "The Sorcerer's Apprentice". Chicago Sun-Times. Sun-Times Media Group. Retrieved July 15, 2010. 
  15. ^ "10 Biggest Box Office Flops of 2010 (So Far)". Parade Magazine. July 19, 2010. 
  16. ^ "The Sorcerer's Apprentice". Box Office Mojo. Amazon.com. Retrieved 2010-10-27. 
  17. ^ "Sword and Sorcery". Box Office Mojo. Amazon.com. Retrieved 2010-10-27. 

External links[edit]