I wasn't kidding about blogging the hell out of every open-mouthed screencap I can find. Because. Hnnnng.
I watched just about the first half of this movie one night in April, while the husband was away. When I went to watch the second half (after the husband had returned from his business trip), the husband payed attention for a few minutes, and then asked if maybe I wouldn't mind starting over from the beginning so that he could watch it with me. I may have raised my eyebrows and sighed contentedly. There may have been further distractions, and, well. We never went back to watching it. So last night, I decided to watch from the beginning, just to refresh my memory. And also, gather data.
There really is nothing quite like sitting down to a Nicholas Cage movie to make you realize that Andy Samberg's ridiculous impression of him is actually pretty accurate. The man can't help his cadence, no matter the situation. You just need to roll with it.
"This is the perfect role for me, in that it exists."
The movie begins with a bit of backstory (Arthurian Legend FTW), and some fighting, and some sorcerer types getting trapped inside of a wooden nesting doll (apparently impenetrable once inside, I mean what is the point of being magical if 3/4" of wood can render you useless). Balthazar (Nick Cage) is given a dragon-shaped ring by Merlin, and told that his quest is to search the world and find The Prime Merlinian, or, the last true descendant of Merlin. He will be the one who can keep Morgana from destroying the world.
Fast forward to the year 2000, when a 4th grader named Dave (the boy who will become JABLES BARABLES) goes on a class trip into the city (NYC. Yes. It is "THE CITY". Deal with it.) and stumbles into a weird looking antique shop. The proprietor? Balthazar. One thing leads to another, dontcha know the dragon ring fits him, blah blah blah and suddenly the evil sorcerer Horvath (Alfred Molina you guys) is there and things go awry. The building is now on fire, Dave is sufficiently freaked out, and Balthazar and Horvath end up in an urn, where they will be trapped for the next ten years. Dave emerges from the building, you know, a little unstable from what has just gone down, and the rest of his class is laughing at him and he's crying and oh man. He throws the wooden doll still holding those bad sorcerers into the street. Not a good thing.
Next thing you know IT'S 2010. Dave (my precious J.B.) is in college and studying physics, of all things. He is a big ole nerd who is not big on socializing, which his roommate ribs him for. He heads off to class and OMG. This girl. In his class. It's Becky from 4th grade, who he was totes in love with, who was the reason that he ran into that crazy old building in the city in the first place on account of he wrote her one of those notes (you know, "Will you be my (check one) FRIEND ..... GIRLFRIEND") and it blew away and right under the door to that crazy...no. He's not going to think about that. Because he's had therapy and it was a totally normal glucose imbalance that made him see those things that clearly didn't happen.
He does still have that dragon ring tho.
"No, I...I've never seen National Treasure."
"I don't want to ruin it for you, but. I'm amazing in it."
Oh man. If you retained that bit that I said before about Balthazar and Horvath, trapped in an urn? Then you should be able to do the simple math and realize that it's time for them to come out. They're both on the hunt for the wooden doll, or at least, the last person who saw it. DAVE YOU GUYS.
Let's just fast forward a bit because ugh. Chase scenes, and Balthazar finding Dave (but not before Horvath, who sends a pack of wolves after him), and Dave learning about sorcery and being asked if he'd like to be Balthazar's apprentice, and by the way, Dave is doing a crazy experiment involving Tesla coils (which immediately makes me think of The Illusionist, and Christian Bale, and that was an amazing movie, and Christian Bale), and he starts to learn sorcery, but he's not quite that good at it yet, and they need to find the wooden doll, and you know, action sequences and whatnot.
Please don't ask me to even begin to try to deal with the red sweatshirt, okay?
They find the wooden doll! Dave gets better at sorcery! They lose the doll again! Becky is really liking Dave! Balthazar was totes in love with Veronica, who is also trapped in the wooden doll as Morgana possessed her before she got trapped in there! Horvath finds a protege, but ends up stealing his powers! More sorcery! More chases! More crazy-ass action sequences!
And oh my god you guys, they totally do a scene where Dave uses his powers to make mops clean up his secret experiment warehouse, JUST LIKE IN FANTASIA. Same music and everything. LEGIT. It was so cute.
Don't mind this BAMF right here I mean hold me.
As you might imagine, there is a showdown. Horvath steals Dave's dragon ring, and he's got the powers of lots of magical peeps attached to his cane. He uses this power to open the wooden doll, releasing Morgana-trapped-in-Veronica's-body. She starts spouting some serious incantations (while standing on a randomly perfect dry fountain in the middle of NYC, that also happens to be right next to the main electrical breaker that powers half of the city, but OKAY IT'S A MOVIE) and then Dave shows up all BAMF and whatnot and he saves the day you guys. Our little physics nerd finally comes into his true powers and THERE YOU GO. EVIL DEFEATED. He even brings Balthazar back to life. WHAT CAN'T THIS CANADIAN BOY DO I AM ASKING YOU SERIOUSLY.
Number of scenes for which they needed to cover up Jay's maple leaf chest tattoo: 1 (though he was shirtless for about one-eighth of one second, so...I don't even remember if the camera would have caught it)
Number of times Jay did that thing, you know, where he pouts his lips and my brain explodes: 20 (And if you're asking yourself if I have been keeping an accurate tally with pen and paper? Your sweet ass? Please to be betting on it.)
Number of times Nick Cage made me think about Andy Samberg: 4
Favorite line: "Neeeeerdyyyyy!" (with fist pumps)
Number of times that I have come close to purchasing that red sweatshirt from American Apparel because of REASONS: 5
Best and most cutest line: "Would you like to have breakfast with me? In France?"
Rating, on a scale of one to ELEVEN: 8
Final Assessment: So. Much. Pouting. Just. What. Oxygen. None.
To the point of complete distraction from plot.