Nicolas Cage (Ghost Rider)
Jay Baruchel (This is The End)
Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2)
Teresa Palmer (Warm Bodies)
Toby Kebbell (Fantastic For)
Omar Benson Miller (Ballers)
Monica Bellucci (The Passion of The Christ)
Alice Krige (Star Trek: First Contact)
In 740 AD, in England, the mighty magician Merlin has three apprentices; Balthazar Blake, Veronica Gorloisen and Maxim Horvath. Horvath betrays his master by joining forces with the evil sorceress Morgana le Fay. Morgana mortally wounds Merlin before Veronica is able to rip Morgana’s soul from her body and absorbs it into her own. As Morgana attempts to kill Veronica by possessing her from within, Balthazar 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 figurine that will identify the Prime Merlinean, Merlin’s descendant and the only one able to defeat Morgana. While he searches for his descendant throughout history, Balthazar imprisons Morganians, sorcerers who try to release Morgana, including Horvath, into successive layers on the Grimhold.In 2000, in New York City, 10-year-old Dave Stutler, encounters Balthazar in his Manhattan antique store, after straying from his school field trip. When Balthazar gives Dave Merlin’s dragon figurine, the statue comes to life and wraps itself around the boy’s finger to form a ring. When Balthazar goes to retrieve a book meant to teach magic, Dave accidentally opens the Grimhold, releasing the imprisoned Horvath. While battling for possession of the Grimhold, Balthazar and Horvath are imprisoned in an ancient Chinese urn with a ten-year lock curse. Dave is then ridiculed by his classmates when he claims he saw magic, only to find the shop empty. He is faced with severe bullying, and is misdiagnosed with hallucination caused by a “glucose imbalance”. David nevertheless keeps the ring.Ten years later in 2010, Dave, now 20 years old, is a physics student at New York University, and meets his childhood crush Becky. He immediately becomes smitten with her, and repairs the transmitting mast of the radio station she works at after it is struck by lightning. 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 adapted 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. Dave defeats Sun Lok, and Balthazar retrieves the Grimhold. Dave changes his mind, deciding that he likes magic after all, and agrees to become Balthazar’s apprentice.He also becomes romantically involved with Becky against Balthazar’s wishes and advice, impressing her by playing the OneRepublic song “Secrets” with the Tesla coils he has been experimenting with. Horvath enlists a youthful Morganian, celebrity magician Drake Stone 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, if freed, would cast a spell called “The Rising”, which would revive sorcerers from the dead and enslave mankind. As Prime Merlinian, Dave will become powerful enough to cast spells without his ring (a focus, which for any other magician is the only way to channel their magic), and is the only one who can stop her.
Despite Balthazar’s disdain of his relationship with Becky, Dave convinces to allow him to meet her for a date. Dave tries to use magic to clean his lab, but loses control of his animated cleaning mops and forces him to cancel his date with Becky. He is saved because of Balthazar’s intervention and, disillusioned, decides to give up on magic, until Becky unknowingly changes his mind.He returns to his underground subway lab, just as Drake and Horvath try to kill Balthazar and steal the Grimhold. Horvath, having no more use for Drake, casts a parasite spell and steals Drake’s magic and his ring. Horvath releases the witch Abigail Williams, uses her to kidnap Becky, then steals her magic and pendant focus. He threatens to kill Becky, forcing Dave to surrender the Grimhold and his ring. Balthazar goes after Horvath in Battery Park, sure that Dave, without his ring, will be killed. Horvath releases Morgana, who begins the Rising Spell while Horvath animates the Charging Bull sculpture and commands it to attack Balthazar. Dave arrives and stuns Horvath with a Tesla coil tied to Balthazar’s car while Balthazar’s eagle flies away with the bull. Becky interrupts the Rising Spell, stunning Morgana.Balthazar takes Morgana, body and soul, from Veronica into himself, but Morgana escapes and tries to incinerate them. Dave attempts to stop her without his ring and succeeds, proving that he is the Prime Merlinean. Morgana shoots plasma bolts at the three and overwhelming Balthazar and Veronica’s shield spells, kills Balthazar when he bodily intercepts a bolt meant for Veronica. Dave makes another, larger Tesla coil out of the square’s lamp posts and power lines to overwhelm her and then fires a plasma barrage which finally destroys her. He revives Balthazar by restarting his heart with plasma shocks. Balthazar and Veronica reunite. Dave and Becky kiss, and fly to France for breakfast on Balthazar’s eagle. In a post-credits scene, Horvath takes his hat at Balthazar’s shop.If you are looking for entertainment and quality Disney has done it again. This is an overlooked movie that should not be missed even if it did not do well at the box office. Do yourself a favor and see this movie. You will not be disappointed.