|“||I am Balthazar Blake, sorcerer of 777th degree, and you are my apprentice.||„|
|~ Balthazar Blake|
Balthazar Blake is a powerful and elite sorcerer who is Dave Stutler's master and another main protagonist in The Sorcerer's Apprentice. Balthazar Blake was one of the three apprentices taken on by the legendary wizard Merlin, in an attempt to stop the evil witch Morgana le Fay.
He is portrayed by Nicolas Cage.
Balthazar was one of Merlin's three apprentices. He fell in love with Veronica Gorloisen while they worked together. When Horvath betrayed the two, and Morgana killed Merlin, Morgana tried to kill Balthazar, but Veronica merged Morgana's spirit into her own body using the Fusion Spell to save him. When Morgana began to kill Veronica from the inside, Balthazar trapped both of them within the Grimhold in an effort to save her. Before Merlin died, he intrusted Balthazar with his ring. Balthazar would give the ring to the Prime Merlinean. Balthazar would search the world until he found the chosen Prime Merlinean.
1260 years later, in present day New York City, the 10 year-old Dave Stutler was going on a field trip with a crush on a fellow 4th grade student named Becky. He passes her a note to check a box whether she wants to be his friend or girlfriend. She checks one of the boxes and then leaves it on a bench. When Dave tries to pick it up the wind picks it up and flies away. Eventually the paper ends up inside an antique shop called Arcana Cabana, and Dave goes in looking for it and accidentally bumps into and almost breaks an ancient urn known as the Grimlock. Balthazar who shows up behind him catches it. He tells Dave that this urn is incredibly old and whoever opens it will be trapped for ten years. Dave mentions he is looking for a note that just coincidentally ended up here. Balthazar believes this to be fate and hands him the tiny silver dragon. In Dave’s hand, it comes alive and twirls around Dave’s finger. Dave is the prime Merlinian.
Balthazar tells him to wait there as he goes to look for something in the basement. Meanwhile, Dave moves his finger and notices something bumping into the wall each time he moves his finger. Finally, the nesting doll which was revealed to be the Grimhold, bursts through the wall and lands in front of him. Dave picks it up and accidentally opens it, releasing Horvath. Before Horvath can kill Dave, Balthazar pushes him at the window and they have an epic wizard fight, with Dave just trying to get out of the way. Dave takes the nesting doll and tries to leave but Horvath will not let him. Balthazar opens the urn from earlier which sucks both him and Horvath into it. Dave runs outside and throws the nesting doll into the street. His teacher and the rest of his class find him, worried. He is freaking out and talks nonsense about wizards and tries to show the teacher inside but there is nothing there. A jar filled with water had broken on his pants and the other kids see this and they all taunt him about peeing his pants.
Ten years later, the Grimlock in which Balthazar and Horvath are trapped in is in some random couple’s apartment, bought from a flea market. The urn bursts open and Horvath is free again. He asks them if he is the first to arrive. They faint. Horvath throws the urn from the apartment and before it smashes on the street Balthazar escapes. Dave comes home to find Horvath waiting for him, asking him where the Grimhold is. Dave does not know since he threw it into the street. Dave runs away and Horvath sends a pack of wolves at him. Dave ends up at the railroad station and falls down on the train tracks. Before the wolves attack him, they become transformed into puppies. Balthazar comes flying in on a giant metal eagle. Dave gets on and slows down Horvath and flies away. Horvath just barely dodges a passing train.
Balthazar and Dave land on a roof of the Chrysler Building and the metal eagle transforms back into a gargoyle. Dave is freaking out but Balthazar calms him down and explains the situation to him, leaving out the part about him being the Prime Merlinean. Dave says he does not want any part of it. Balthazar summons Dave’s dresser and pulls out the dragon ring and asks him why he kept it. Dave says he was going to sell it on E-Bay but Balthazar tells him that he is a terrible liar which is a good thing. Dave promises he will help him up until they find the Grimhold and then he can go back to his life. Balthazar summons a spell to help him find it. Storm clouds hover over the downtown area indicating that that is where they must go. Horvath goes back to the former antique shop and is able to sense what happened to the Grimhold using a special spell to see into the past. He sees that a Chinese woman has picked it up. He knows that he must go to Chinatown. Balthazar goes to the car impound lot and retrieves his car to stay inconspicuous. On the drive to the doll, Balthazar teaches Dave a basic fire spell. They reach Chinatown where a big celebration is happening. Dave waits outside while Balthazar goes inside. Upstairs he meets the old Chinese woman and he speaks Cantonese to her. She says he speaks wonderful Mandarin. It was Horvath in disguise. He has already unleashed a fellow Morganian, Sun Lok, from the doll. They fight and Sun-Lok ends up on the streets, where Balthazar tells Dave to run. Sun-Lok transforms one of the fake dragon floats into an actual dragon which chases Dave. Horvath and Balthazar fight and Balthazar gets the upper hand, taking the nesting doll away from him. Dave runs up a fire escape as the dragon chases after him, having trouble conjuring up the fire spell. He shoots it just in time defeating Sun-Lok.
In the car, Balthazar asks for the ring back per their agreement. Dave decides not to now that he had a taste of magic and wants to learn more. They need a place to practice and they decide to use Dave’s lab. Balthazar gives Dave the Encantus, a book that holds the entire history of sorcery including the things they just did today. Dave agrees to take on the responsibility and they begin training.
On a break, Balthazar and Dave have dinner sitting on a bench outside Becky’s radio station. Balthazar is very negative on the relationship and tells him that love is not good for a sorcerer. Dave says that she is the one for him and that he loves her. Dave gets up and follows her as she leaves the station. They go down into the subway station and a mugger robs them at a knifepoint, stealing her grandmother’s bracelet. Dave chases after him and clumsily uses his magic to knock him out. He comes back with her stuff back, impressing her and she notices something different about him. He offers to help tutor her on the physics at his lab. She agrees as she boards the next train.
At his lab, Becky arrives and introduces Balthazar as his uncle who leaves despite his best efforts to stop Dave from pursuing this. Dave shows off his Tesla coils and science projects and shows off a cool musical element to his coils. The next day he walks her to yoga class and they make a date for the next day. In the bathroom, Drake confronts Dave and pushes him around. Horvath arrives and tells him that Balthazar is keeping something from him. He demands to know where the Grimhold is. Balthazar arrives just in time and traps Horvath inside the bathroom mirror and knocks out Drake. Back at the lab, Dave demands to know everything and Balthazar tells him, including what happened to his great love Veronica and the fact that the Prime Merlinean will be so powerful that he will never need the ring to do magic.
Dave tries to get ready for his date and clean up the lab but he gets frustrated with the mess so he uses his magic to get the brooms to come to life. When he comes back from his shower, the entire lab is a bigger mess with the entire floor flooded and everything inanimate coming to life and causing a giant mess. Becky knocks on the door and he rushes to the door and has to tell her to leave. As he tries to deal with the ever escalating mess, his electric lab equipment almost electrocutes him until the timely arrival of Balthazar, who with a wave of his hand cleans the mess. He chastises him for taking shortcuts. They get into a big fight with Dave storming out. Horvath gets the school records of Dave using a “Jedi mind trick” on the registrar’s office. He finds out where his private lab space is.
Dave sees Becky with her friends and sees how he does not belong and leaves. Becky sees him and follows him to the roof where Balthazar had taken him to at the beginning. He’s about to throw the ring away until Becky stops him. She tells him that nothing is ruined with them and she really cares for him. At his lab, Dave returns and Balthazar says there’s no need to apologize but Dave pushes him into a grating and traps him. It’s Drake in disguise. Horvath arrives as well and they search for the nesting doll and find it. Balthazar frees himself and tries to fight them but almost loses until Dave arrives and saves his life. Drake and Horvath leave with what they were after and Dave and Balthazar give chase. What follows is an exciting car chase with magically changing vehicles which ends with Horvath and Drake getting away.
Back at Drake’s apartment, Drake wonders how they open it. Horvath uses a parasite spell to steal Drake’s power and life force and uses that to free the next Morganian, a legendary witch named Abigail Williams from the Salem Witch Trials. This Morganian sorceress goes to Becky’s radio station and kidnaps her. Dave and Balthazar arrive at Drake’s apartment, searching for Horvath. They split up. Balthazar gets trapped in a Persian Quickrug sand trap. Dave finds the Grimhold almost too easily. Just as he goes back to the front door, he finds Horvath with his cane to Becky’s throat. Horvath demands both his ring and the Grimhold or Becky dies. Dave relents and gives him both. Horvath fires an energy bolt at the two, which they dodge, and flees just as Balthazar has freed himself and arrives. Dave apologizes but Balthazar says he would have done the same thing. Balthazar goes to the balcony and flies away on his giant metal eagle, to Becky’s shock. Dave offers to help but Balthazar says he cannot since he’s powerless without the ring. Horvath kills the notorious Salem witch early to steal her power via teh Parasite Spell as he did with Drake Stone in order to free Morgana. Dave tries to drop Becky off but she will not have any of it. She is involved now. Dave comes up with a plan using his Tesla coils strapped to Balthazar’s car. He also finds a note with a necklace telling Dave to give it to Veronica when this is all over.
Balthazar arrives to the Financial District to find Morgana standing in the middle of the circle with Horvath’s assistance in summoning and raising the dead through the dark magical ceremony known as The Rising. Dave and Becky, in the car, already see the spell taking hold in the sky. Dave stops the car and tells Becky to climb the building to move the satellite in order to disrupt the spell. Before she goes, Dave asks her what box she checked off at the beginning of the film in case he dies. She will tell him when he does not die.
Horvath finds Balthazar and fights him off. He raises to life the metal bull nearby and it chases after Balthazar. Horvath is about to be victorious when Dave drives in and uses the Tesla coils attached to the car to give a great shock to Horvath’s cane, defeating him and his bull. Becky successfully disrupts the satellite dish wrecking the spell. Balthazar absorbs Morgana’s soul from Veronica’s body, freeing her. Balthazar tries to get Dave to trap him in the nesting doll but he won’t. Morgana leaves Balthazar’s body and frees herself. Morgana blasts at the group but Dave blocks it without the help of the ring. He really is the Prime Merlinean. They get into a huge battle where Morgana blasts at Veronica and Balthazar. Dave is able to summon up enough energy to defeat her completely.
He sees Veronica over Balthazar’s body. He was dead. Dave will now accept this and uses his magic to resuscitate him. He lives and Balthazar and Veronica kiss, finally reunited.
Personality and Traits
Balthazar can be a kind and gentle man, but he can also be a serious and courageous sorcerer. When he sees Dave trying to win the affection from Becky, Balthazar chastises Dave for it as it would hinder him from his focus on studying the sorcery. In spite of his faith on Dave, Balthazar doubts whether Dave would able to fully embrace his destiny as the Prime Merlinean; though he managed to convince Dave to study the sorcery under his tutelage, Balthazar only telling him that the main priority of the study was to defeat Horvath and seal him back inside the Grimhold instead of destroying Morgana and freeing Veronica altogether. That's until Dave's confrontation with Stone and Horvath made him demand the true purpose of his study and who was sealed inside the Grimhold.
His doubts for Dave to fully embrace his nature as the Prime Merlinean, and why he chastise Dave for trying to win the affection from Becky eventually revealed that he, in fact, was lonely and missing Veronica for centuries. Merlin's death, Horvath's betrayal, Veronica being forced to use the Fusion spell on Morgana, all of them has become a grave burden for him. These burdens also made him have doubts to be friends with those whom he meets in his journeys until he met Dave, whom turned out to share some similarities with Veronica, as both of them prefer the normal life instead of a life full of adventures and battles that they already had. Unfortunately, this also used by Horvath, whom sadistic enough to use the disguise spell on a nearby pedestrian to made her resembles Veronica as distraction for him so he and Drake could escape. In spite of this, after he eventually reveal his burden to Dave, his burden eventually lightened, and gone after reunites with Veronica. It was obvious that why he chastise Dave for for trying to win the affection from Becky not only would hinder his focus from his study in sorcery, but also afraid that it would also brought up his own happy times with Veronica that would hinder his focus in his quest.
His love with Veronica, which has started long ago, was something that keep him forward in his journey until he met and trained Dave that eventually became Prime Merlinean. As Veronica saves his life by using the Fusion Spell on Morgana, Balthazar has revealed planned to do the same in return (though he succeed in saving Veronica, this inevitably unleashed Morgana's ghostly form since her body only consists of a floating mass of dust). His well-planned heroic sacrifice also something that made him tolerate Dave for giving Horvath the Dragon Ring due to him held Becky hostage albeit not letting him to join the battle as Dave have not had his Prime Merlinean powers awakened yet.
- Due to him became Dave’s mentor while the movie also inspired by the Harry Potter series, Balthazar was quite equivalent with Albus Dumbledore in spite both of them had little to no things in common aside being a master of a young sorcerer that is destined to save the world.
- He also similar with Yoda from Star Wars, and Merlin from The Sword in the Stone as both of them having role as mentors of young individuals that are turned out to be fulfilling a great destiny.
- However, he was more akin to Yen Sid from Disney's Fantasia and The Sorcerer from the poem The Sorcerer’s Apprentice by Goethe as all of them are the characters that he was based upon. Each of them are powerful master of a young apprentice, and both also shown having same records where they stopped a magical activity that caused by their apprentice that is spiraling out of control where the said spell is the Cleaning Spell.
- Given his friendship with Horvath until the latter’s betrayal and conflict within their respective factions (the Merlineans for Balthazar Blake and the Morganians for Maxim Horvath), Balthazar can be compared with Optimus Prime from Transformers, especially in the Transformers live-action film series and in Transformers: Prime. Reason of these are:
- Their respective organizations/species have ideals that opposing each other, especially their opinion regarding other species: Merlinean belief is they supposedly defend humanity as well as using their powers for good, and this is similar with the Autobots’ beliefs, while the Morganian beliefs that they supposedly enslave/purge humanity as well as use their powers for personal and/or destructive ends, similar with the Decepticons’ own convictions.
- Both Balthazar and Horvath used to be friends before certain events led them to became enemies much like Optimus Prime once did with Megatron in Transformers: Prime, though the said event were nowhere to be same: Horvath was angered that Veronica chooses Balthazar instead of him, which led him to adapt Morganian belief and join forces with Morgana while Megatron got angry when it is revealed that Optimus Prime, whom at that moment a regular Cybertronian named Orion Pax revealed having a different belief that clashes with his.
- Soon after escaped from the Grimlock, Balthazar was shown wearing his signature fedora which implied to be conjured out of thin air (he never wore one prior to sealing himself with Horvath).
- He is portrayed by Nicholas Cage, whom also proposed the idea about the movie as he wanted to explore a mystic world with a magical character.
- Like other main characters in the film, Balthazar's character has undergo some changes in the film's scripts. In the early script of the film, Balthazar's background was different: He is neither a centuries-old sorcerer nor even Merlinean from start. Instead, he was the modern-day sorcerer whom once worked for Horvath as both his apprentice and Morganian assassin. He was sent to assassinate Aurelius Flood (Merlin's modern day successor before the Prime Merlinean) and his daughter Veronica Flood (early version of Veronica Gorloisen in that script) so he can retrieve the Grimhold for his master. But he was failed, and defeated by Aurelius and his daughter. Even so, they spared his life and taught him that magic is neither good nor evil, as it's user's heart that matters. After spent some time with his target until his full recovery, Balthazar finally choose to become full-fledged Merlinean to start a new leaf and has found his newfound crush with Veronica. Sadly, in the fateful battle against Morganians, his life took the darker turn where Horvath managed to release Morgana. Aurelius managed to stop this by imprisoned Morgana once again, this time along with her deadliest followers including Horvath. Whereas Aurelius himself dying and left Balthazar a task to find new generation of Prime Merlinean, Veronica was lost, because Morgana possessed her and resulting both her and Veronica imprisoned within the Grimhold.