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Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders (1996)

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2.3
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Ratings: 2.3/10 from 3,684 users  
Reviews: 76 user | 5 critic

Two creepy "horror" films joined together by Merlin's Shop which is, in turn, introduced by a Grandpa telling the story.

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Title: Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders (1996)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
George Milan ...
Bunny Summers ...
John Terrence ...
Patricia Sansone ...
Madeline Cooper (as Pat Sansone)
Mark Hurtado ...
Nicholas Noyes ...
Hillary Young ...
Julia Leigh Miller ...
Ben Sussman ...
Randy Chandler ...
Bob Mendelsohn ...
David Andrews (archive footage) (as Bob Mendlesohn)
Struan Robertson ...
Michael Andrews (archive footage)
Bruce Parry ...
Pete (archive footage)
Vicki Saputo ...
Susan (archive footage)
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Storyline

This is a movie within a TV movie within a made-for-video movie. A boy is watching TV when a power outage forces him to talk to his grandpa for entertainment. His grandpa, a former screenwriter, re-tells an old screenplay about Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders. In it, Merlin sets up an enchanting store in a modern-day strip mall, accompanied by his gleeful wife and gnomes, snakes, dragons, etc. From this framing device, we then see two stories about people's encounters with items from the shop. The first sequence (created for this film but looking like an episode of "Tales From The Darkside") involves a pompous, cranky newspaper critic who begins casting spells using Merlin's spell book. The second story, an edited version of the full length movie, The Devil's Gift, is about an evil monkey doll (you know, the wicked grin and the cymbals?) who kills every time his hands clap. Merlin of the 1990s is disjointedly tied-in with the 1980 movie. Written by Michael "Rabbit" Hutchison <rabhutch@spacestar.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

monkey | cymbal | spell book | dragon | clerk | See more »

Taglines:

In a world where magic truely (sic) exists, anything can happen.

Genres:

Fantasy

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Also Known As:

Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders  »

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Technical Specs

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Did You Know?

Goofs

Just before Grampa tells the story, his arm is stretched across the top of the sofa. In the next shot, his arm is by his side. See more »

Quotes

Jonathan Cooper: Merlin, you bastard!
See more »

Connections

Edited from The Devil's Gift (1984) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"I Have Mace!"
16 August 2006 | by (Essex) – See all my reviews

When you see a blonde woman threaten an old coot dressed up as Merlin, with Mace, you know you're in for a treat of a movie. Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders is one of the most muddled up, confused, poorly stitched together films you could ever have the misfortune to come across. It opens with a young boy watching TV. His grandfather then begins to tell him some stories about Merlin, the Great Magician, who has opened up a spell shop in the modern times. Selling potions, spell books, snakes, spiders, cauldrons and other wacky products, it's no surprise that an enraged reviewer decides to threaten Merlin by promising to give an awful review in the local paper about the shop. He then takes one of Merlin's spell books home and begins to dabble in the dark arts, only managing to turn his cat into a vicious beast. The cat then begins to violently attack it's owner, which results in the man setting the cat alight, and letting it die in a burst of flames. So far so good for a children's movie? No. So far so good for a horror film? No. Okay then... well, so far so good? No! The pain then continues when the man continues to practise spells, but only ends up turning himself a hundred years older, then turning himself back in time, to a young baby. And there, we have the end of the first strange story. Nothing very entertaining to get out of it. It's to harsh and bloody for young viewers, yet to unrealistic, unappealing and tame for any older viewer. The acting so far stinks like rotting fish, and the plot is a muddled as you can get. Then onto the second story, about a birthday present bought for a kid; a procession monkey doll, which claps cymbals and chatters it's teeth. However whenever it does this, something bad happens (starting with a goldfish, then the cat, then the near miss with the human) This episode is a fun premise, but is done slowly and painfully, with no real suspense or excitement to hold you down and reel you in. It's just to boring and slow and plain for anyone over ten years watching, and to creepy and a slight bit unsettling for very young, young children. So what audience category does this fit into? Who will enjoy it? Who is it aimed at? The answer is; no-one. And no-one should feel the need to torture themselves by trying to sit through this bland, sordid mess.


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