Nicolas Cage is a master sorcerer who recruits geeky student Jay Baruchel to help him defeat his arch-enemy (Alfred Molina).

The beloved Mickey Mouse cartoon segment in 1940’s Fantasia inspires a rip-roaring live-action, full-length fantasy caper.

Cage is hugely entertaining as the incredibly ancient, but reasonably well-preserved Balthazar Blake, Baruchel is also ideal as his unwilling student and Molina, who has his own sidekick in an English rock star (Toby Kebbell), makes a lip-smacking baddie.

Baruchel’s really more interested in Teresa Palmer than magic, but Cage forces him to fulfil his destiny as the sorcerer’s apprentice to save the world.

This is a likeable, fast-moving blast of a movie, with loads to do for the four leads, who get proper characters to play and decent, witty dialogue to perform.

It’s an old-fashioned, handsome yarn and the excellent effects don’t overpower the plot.