The young blacksmith Siegfried, who, not knowing that he is heir to a conquered kingdom, becomes popular with the Burgunds by slaying their bane, the dragon Fafnir. When the reward seems to... See full summary »
The legend of King Arthur, this time, from the perspective of the King's Wizard, Merlin. Merlin is a creature born of pagan magic, living in a world converting to Christianity. Merlin is beside Arthur as he gains Excalibur, builds Camelot and is betrayed by his wife, Guinevere. Merlin and Arthur are both menaced by the plots of Morgan Le Fey, her son by Arthur, Mordred, and their cohorts. Through it all, Merlin tries to keep Arthur from the destructive path set by fate. Written by
Michael "Rabbit" Hutchison <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Actors Nickolas Grace and Robert Addie, best known for their roles as the Sheriff of Nottingham and Sir Guy of Gisburne in the TV series Robin Hood (1984), have a cameo scene together in this miniseries - a nod to fans of the beloved '80s fantasy show. See more »
In the scene where Igraine is giving birth to Arthur, she has a completely flat stomach. See more »
With evil all around me, I can do nothing but evil to survive.
Oh... that's too easy.
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If you are deciding whether to watch "Merlin", my advice would be to ignore all the extreme comments in this section; some would have you believe that this is the worst movie ever and others that it is a film masterpiece. The fact is that it is a well executed but philosophically shallow (family friendly) telling of the traditional version of the Arthurian legends; with some alterations. As you can probably tell from the title, this story is more focused on Merlin than on Camelot and King Arthur. If you ever wondered what it would be like to see William Shatner play a medieval wizard, you can find a close approximation in the way Sam Neill plays Merlin. This is not as bad as it sounds because Neill is intrinsically more likable than Shatner and because ham acting is necessary in his scenes with Miranda Richardson, who gives her usual dominating performance as both Queen Mab and her sister-the Lady of the Lake. Isabella Rossellini plays Neill's love interest, she looks amazingly young considering her high mileage and the viewer has a lot of time to reflect on her age/appearance because her character is staggeringly boring.
Martin Short and Helena Bonham Carter are very effective in comic relief. And comic relief is the real strength of this production as the dialogue of the villains is often intentionally very amusing (don't want to scare the family too much). Unfortunately this makes Mab and her two allies far more likable than any of the other characters.
While "Merlin" is far superior to 2004's "King Arthur", it is not even remotely in the class of John Boorman's "Excalibur". "Excalibur" is obviously a much better looking film but it is also a much more ambitious film philosophically. And "Excalibur" does not have the plot holes that draw attention to "Merlin's" moronically contrived storyline. Basically "Merlin" is dumbed down enough to make good family viewing but has enough intentionally funny performances and subtly humorous dialogue to entertain more sophisticated viewers.
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