The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Rated 3.0

Over the past 10 years Nicolas Cage has become nothing more than a pop-culture punchline who inexplicably keeps getting cast in projects he is woefully wrong for. Prone to chewing the scenery like a swarm of flailing locusts, even trailers become intolerable when his lugubrious mug pops up in them. So it comes as a pleasant surprise that he dials it down a few notches and turns in an understated and even amusing performance in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. In Disney’s latest attempt to kickstart a franchise (this one based on the Mickey Mouse segment of Fantasia), Cage plays a world-weary sorcerer who has roamed the four corners for centuries, looking for the chosen one to mentor into defeating the forces of darkness that threaten to return and destroy the Earth with a zombie apocalypse. He finds a nerdy physics major (Jay Baruchel) who fits the bill just as his nemesis (Alfred Molina) begins unleashing all sorts of mayhem. While not especially memorable, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is nonetheless perfectly adequate matinee fodder for tweens. Although it never really delivers on the promised zombie apocalypse. Feather River Cinemas, Paradise Cinema 7 and Tinseltown. Rated PG