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"The Sorcerer's Apprentice" - {Blu-ray} - (Wayne)
Reviewer:
Wayne Klein
Studio: Disney
Genre:
Drama
Release Date:
11/30/10
Special Features:

Nine featurettes, deleted scenes, outtakes

Review:

Continuing a trend begun with "Pirates of the Caribbean", Disney turned once again to Jerry Bruckheimer to produce a film based on one of the properties that Disney already owned. The formula that worked well for "Pirates" doesn't work quite as well with "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" having more in common with "The Haunted Mansion". While it isn't a complete failure, "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" still doesn't live up to the potential of the premise nor the fun in most of the "Pirates" movies. ***

Balthazar (Nicholas Cage) believes he has discovered the sorcerer of the prophecy in the form of Dave (Jay Baruchel) a geeky science major. Taking the boy under his wing Balthazar finds he needs Dave's assistance to keep the evil sorcerer Maxim (Alfred Molina) from releasing the all powerful witch Morgana (Alice Krige) and prevent her from taking over the world. ***

Having nothing to do beyond the title with the original short from "Fantasia", "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" lacks the magic of "Pirates" and the direction of Jon Turtletaub and screenplay lack the confidence to rely on the abilities of the actors to explore the fascinating premise of the screenplay relying on gimmicks trying to turn the film into a big, bold fantasy adventure without a sense of wonder. ---

Image & Sound:

Although "Sorcerer" may lack of a sense of wonder the transfer certain supplies some--we get a marvelous looking, sharp and detailed transfer with colors that pop and no detectable artificats. Colors pop particularly during the fight sequences of the film. ***

The audio is likewise outstanding with a sharp, very active 5.1 lossless presentation. Dialogue comes across crisp and clear even during the most active sequences of the film. ---

Special Features:

We get a number of featurettes that gives us quite a big of information on the making of the film from conception to execution. ***

"Fantasia: reinventing A Classic" focuses on the complex visual effects along with "Making Magic Real" which focuses on the practicel effects (physical, on set) of the film. ***

"Magic in the City" and "The Science of Sorcery" gives us behind-the-scenes footage respectively for the location shooting in New York City and the props used in the film. ***

"The Fashionable Drake Stone" features actor Toby Kebbell discussing his role as the evil magician in the film. ***

"The World's Coolest Car" highlights the 1935 Rolls Royce that Cage's character uses. ***

"Wolves and Puppies" let's us spend some time with the animals in the picture. ***

"The Encantus and "The Grimhold: An Evil Work of Art" focus respectively on the creation of the sorcerer's book using digital and practice effects and the latter focuses on a particularly nasty creature from the film. ***

Surprisingly we don't get a theatrical or teaser trailer for the film but we do get some deleted scenes for the film that provide us with a bit of background on the search for the apprentice.

Final Words:

A disappointing film " The Sorcerer's Apprentice" had a fascinating and potentially fun premise but, unfortunately, the writers-directors-producers managed to wring any fun out of the project. Cage and the rest of the cast have a ball even if the film lacks the magic I had hoped for.

 

 
 
 
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