Of all the movies made about Merlin I believe this to be one of the best and when I seen it was on You Tube I started watching it. The only problem was when I finished watching one video I had to search where the next one was. After awhile I was getting tired of seeing one video and then having to try and to find the next one. Well I got to thinking, and sometimes that's dangerous for me, well anyway I was thinking that You Tube provides embed codes for these videos and allows you to place them on your web sites. I said to myself, hey, I got a web site, why don't I get the embed codes and place them on my Merlin site. I'm sure some of the people who visit this site might like to see a movie about Merlin. So I started getting the embed codes, well right off the bat I ran into problems. The first video had the embed code disabled, I said dang, well I said something worst than that, anyway I checked the other videos to see if their codes had been disable, I found out they were good to go. I got those codes and placed them on this web site, while I was placing these codes on this page I was thinking to myself that I might be able to get the code somehow or the other on video number one. Well after a lot of attempts I finally figured out the code and place it on this page and sure thing it was there when I loaded the page, I was so happy, but that happiness was short lived, for when I click on the video it show that the video had been disabled and you had to click on the link they provided which took me to the You Tube page where the video number 1 was. Well as soon as I finished watching that video I closed the page out and watch the rest of the movie with the videos I embedded on this page, it worked really great. So I guess until I can do something better, if you want to watch this movie go ahead and click on the first video and watch that segment, when that is over just close that page and click on where it says go to Part 2, or just scowl down to Part 2 and start watching it. Now I have placed some hyper-links just below each video, when your finish watching one of the videos, just click on the link and it will go to the following video. I'm sorry about your having to go to You Tube to watch the beginning, but maybe I will be able to work out the code before long where I can get the code embedded on this page. At least now if you want to watch this movie, once you watch video number 1, you don't have to go to next 18 different pages to see the rest of the movie. If you do have any problems, comments or questions you may email me Charles H. Dudley at email@example.com , I will answer your email as soon as I can. So enjoy the movie and you might want to pop some pop corn before you get started. Enjoy!
P. S. I will be placing more movies about Merlin, King Arthur and if I can find some, I'll place on here some videos about fairies.
Merlin is a television miniseries released in 1998 that retells the legend of King Arthur from the perspective of the wizard Merlin. Sam Neill stars in the title role in a story that covers not only the rise and fall of Camelot but also the phase in the legendary history of Britain that precedes it.
The film deviates from more traditional versions of the legend, notably by including new characters such as Queen Mab and by keeping Merlin through the whole reign of King Arthur over Britain (whereas in older versions Merlin left earlier on in the king's reign). The film was followed by a sequel in 2006, Merlin's Apprentice, which was more loosely connected with traditional Arthurian legend.
The film opens with an aged Merlin narrating his story. Britain faces civil war and the Saxon invasion. Meanwhile, the spread of Christianity has left the power of the fey goddess Queen Mab (Miranda Richardson) on the wane. Coupled with the destruction of both Christian and pagan holy sites due to the turmoil, Mab's world of magic faces imminent extinction. While her sister, the Lady of the Lake (Richardson in a dual role) accepts the inevitable, Mab chooses to resist. She decides to create a half-human/half-fey being, a wizard, that she believes will bring people back to the "Old Ways". Merlin is created by Queen Mab and is born to a human mother, Elissa, though he possesses no mortal father. Elissa dies shortly after giving birth to Merlin, leaving the child to be raised by Ambrosia, an old woman who used to be a pagan but has since rejected Mab and the Old Ways. Ambrosia refuses to give the infant Merlin to Mab, arguing that love is needed to raise a child, and that Mab is incapable of providing it. Mab seems to agree and leaves, but warns Ambrosia that one day she will return and take him away once he manifests his powers.
Merlin grows up with no knowledge of his true heritage, until he uses magic for the first time to save a nobleman's daughter named Nimue (Isabella Rossellini). For saving her life, she grants him a kiss. They exchange names and Merlin vows never to forget her. On returning home he tells Ambrosia of him saving Nimue. Ambrosia realizes it is time for Merlin to go to Mab, and tells him of his past. Merlin is taken to Mab's underground palace, where she plans to train him in magic until he becomes the greatest wizard of all time. Merlin spends some time learning magical skills from Frik (Martin Short), Mab's shape-shifting gnome servant.
Out of boredom, Merlin unknowingly calls the Lady of the Lake, who "accidentally" blurts out that Queen Mab let his birth mother die, and that Ambrosia is dying. Merlin arrives in time to see the end of an argument between Mab and Ambrosia. She is unable to survive, and in her last breath, makes Merlin swear to only listen to his heart. On her grave he makes a blood-oath that he will never use magic except to defeat Mab.
Many years later, Merlin is summoned to see the tyrant King Vortigern (Rutger Hauer). Upon his arrival he learns that a pagan soothsayer has promised the King that Merlin's blood will prevent the destruction of his ever-collapsing castle. This soothsayer had earlier asked Queen Mab for help in solving the tyrant King's request, and she suggested finding a man "with no mortal father", thus leading him to Merlin. However, Merlin informs the King that his castle is being built on water, and that he would be more useful alive since his dreams can predict the future. The King spares Merlin but throws him in a dungeon. Nimue recognizes the captive Merlin and persuades King Vortigern to release him. Merlin and Nimue grow close, but Mab, determined to make Merlin break his oath, plots against their union and has Nimue sacrificed to a great dragon, with Merlin watching. Merlin ends up using magic, breaking his oath, to tie down the dragon, but couldn't save Nimue from getting injured by the dragon. She is sent to Avalon to recover, and Merlin leaves to defeat Vortigern and his new ally, Mab.
Soon Merlin dreams of two dragons, a red defeating a white. The red dragon is that of Uther Pendragon, whose father, King Constant (John Gielgud) was murdered by Vortigern to seize his throne. Merlin helps Uther win his war against Vortigern, by informing him of Vortigern's unprecedented winter attack, and leading Uther's forces to confront him on a frozen river. Merlin himself kills Vortigern with the aid of the magical sword Excalibur, given to him as a gift by the Lady of the Lake. He believes that Uther will be a just, decent king and gives Excalibur to him.
However, Uther soon becomes obsessed with Igraine (Rachel Colover), the wife of the Duke of Cornwall. Merlin, worried about Uther misusing Excalibur, tricks Uther out of the sword and places it within a living mountain, the Rock of Ages (James Earl Jones), who promises to keep it until a true king arrives, a man with a good heart. But after Merlin leaves Uther without Excalibur, he returns later to see madness and lust have clouded his mind. Uther lays siege on Cornwall's castle, but cannot break through, and while his attention is focused there, the rest of England falls back into civil war. To stop the insanity, Merlin strikes a deal with Uther. He will help Uther bed Igraine, in exchange for guardianship of the child born from the union, and for the Duke and his men to be spared. Once this is agreed, Merlin uses magic to transform Uther's appearance into that of the Duke's, while Uther's forces lead Cornwall and his men away. He enters the castle and sleeps with Igraine. Igraine's young and disfigured daughter, Morgan le Fay (Helena Bonham Carter), is the only one who sees through Uther's disguise.
But Uther betrays Merlin, going back on his word and having Cornwall and his men slaughtered. Merlin forever regrets allowing this to happen. Igraine eventually begins to give birth to the baby, when Frik meets and amuses Morgan through his magic, in return she promises to place a black stone beneath the baby's sheets in his crib, thus cursing his life. Igraine then gives birth to Arthur, but at the cost of her own life. Mab then confronts Merlin, proclaiming Arthur to be damned, but Merlin vows to raise him good and helps bring her down.
In time, Arthur, now living with Sir Ector and unaware of his heritage, is tutored throughout his childhood by Merlin. He teaches him ethics and morals, hoping to make Arthur the image of goodness and a perfect king. Uther during this time meanwhile, goes mad and finally commits suicide, which leaves the kingdom in turmoil over who will be the new King. Merlin informs Arthur of his rightful place as the only son of Uther and true heir to the throne. Mab attempts to assassinate Arthur by unleashing a pack of griffins; though Merlin foils the attack by directing a swarm of wasps to drive the monsters off, he is reminded Mab is still an ever-present threat. Mab, likewise, is goaded to take more direct action in the wake of her assassins' failure and the realization she is losing her power more and more quickly.
With the throne vacant, all the noblemen in the kingdom try to take Excalibur from the Rock of Ages, but none can. With Mab and Merlin watching, Arthur arrives and tries to take the sword. Mab pleads with the rock to not let Arthur have the sword, saying he will bring bloodshed like his father, and will destroy all the old ways. But Arthur replies that he doesn't know what he will be; only what he is. This wise response makes the Rock of Ages see the goodness in Arthur, and it loosens its grip, but Mab heats the sword. Arthur persists in removing it, and with burning, blood-soaked hands, raises it for all the surrounding people to see (Mab uses it to claim that just as Arthur's reign begins in blood, so shall it end the same way).
When Merlin presents Arthur to the noblemen, not all recognize him as their rightful king. But some including King Lot's son declare him king, through both his revealed heritage and the sword Excalibur. But many of the nobles refuse to heed Merlin's words to end the cycle of violence, they storm off to fight for the throne, with armies now mobilized. Arthur avoids a battle against Lord Lot by daring the latter to use Excalibur to kill him; the magic of the sword convinces Lot to submit. Arthur is crowned King and institutes the Round Table.
Arthur then decides to build Camelot and fulfill Merlin's dreams. Merlin leaves, thinking the kingdom is finally at peace, but Mab comes up with a counter-plan of her own. She instructs Frik to seek out Arthur's half-sister Morgan le Fay and poison her mind by making her beautiful, and has her seduce the young King, who is unaware of their relation. Morgan and Arthur's act of incest eventually reaches Merlin, who races back to Camelot to confront Arthur. After learning the sickening truth, Merlin tells Arthur that Morgan will give birth to Arthur's abomination of a son, Mordred, whom Mab raises to become Arthur's downfall and bring back the Old Ways. As Mordred is from a cursed union, he is exceptionally strong and grows at an abnormally fast rate.
Arthur starts construction of his castle Camelot and marries Guinevere (Lena Headey). He then wishes to take his knights on a quest for the Holy Grail, so he holds a tournament to find a champion who will defend and complete Camelot in his absence. Knowing that Arthur's enemies would take advantage of his absence, the Lady of the Lake guides Merlin to a "good man", where he finds Sir Lancelot with his wife Elaine and their son, Galahad. Merlin brings Lancelot back to Camelot, who then wins the tournament.
Unfortunately, in Arthur's absence, Guinevere and Lancelot become infatuated with each other and embark on a love affair, despite Merlin warning of the consequences. Mab magically makes sure Lancelot's wife can see his betrayal, and she is found dead at the shores of Camelot not long after. Merlin accuses Lancelot of killing her through heartbreak and he flees Camelot in his guilt and shame. Arthur and his knights return to the city shortly afterwards, their quest a failure. Mordred then makes his presence as Arthur's son and heir known and reveals Guinevere's betrayal to all. Outmaneuvered by Mordred, Arthur is forced to condemn her to be burned at the stake for treason. Mid-way through the execution, Arthur changes his mind and begs Merlin to save her, so Merlin makes it rain which saves Guinevere long enough for Lancelot to fight his way into Camelot and ride off with her to safety. Furious, Mordred confronts Arthur, who denounces and banishes him. Mordred begins to raise an army among those dissatisfied with Arthur and Merlin.
Meanwhile, Frik and Morgan le Fay have fallen in love after Mab's magic makes them both beautiful. When Morgan refuses to allow Mab to further use Mordred for her own ends, Mab kills her with Frik watching. Frik holds the dying Morgan and their true ugly forms return, but they both call each other beautiful anyway and she dies in his arms. Frik vows revenge on Mab, so she takes his powers away. He later joins Arthur's army.
Queen Mab then lures Nimue into a magical wilderness and removes the scars from her past injury, explaining she wishes to keep Merlin out of the way so he cannot intervene in the battle to come. Wanting to be with him, Nimue agrees and sends for Merlin. He comes to her, but senses a trap when he realizes the idyllic paradise they are in is a creation of Mab's. However, Nimue compels him to give up his war with her and simply be at peace.
Meanwhile, the armies of Mordred and Arthur prepare themselves at the battle. Many on both sides are slain, and in a climatic duel, Arthur defeats Mordred. Mordred deals Arthur a fatal blow before Arthur kills him. Merlin, having heard the screams of battle and knowing Arthur is dying, leaves Nimue to go to his aid. However, once he leaves their haven, it seals behind him (Mab had already warned Nimue once they were inside, they could never leave). Knowing he has lost her forever, Merlin races to Arthur's side, and to seek retribution against Mab.
At the battlefield, both Mab and Merlin witness the deaths of their protégés, Mab's dark magic is unable to save Mordred, while Arthur lives long enough for Merlin to arrive. Arthur tells Merlin to return Excalibur to whence it came, as no-one can be allowed to wield its power. Merlin comforts Arthur with the knowledge that he was a great king and the right man to wield Excalibur. He leaves Arthur to return the sword, grief-stricken as his king, student and friend dies behind him.
Merlin gives Excalibur back to the Lady of the Lake. Angry and sorrowful, Merlin accuses her of lying to him about the guardian of Camelot, but he realizes the Lady had meant Galahad instead of Lancelot. She comforts a horrified Merlin with the words "It's human to make mistakes, Merlin and part of you is human...the best part". She then bids Merlin goodbye, saying that her sister Mab was right about one thing, "When we're forgotten, we cease to exist".
Furious, Merlin returns to Camelot, where he finds Mab sitting at the Round Table. Frik explains that Mab is weakened, but still dangerous. With nothing more to lose, the pair engages in an intense magical duel that destroys the Round Table. Unable to vanquish Merlin, Mab mocks him and tells him that he and his human followers can't destroy her, but Merlin knows that there are few people that believe in the Old Ways. He turns his back on her telling her that everyone will forget her, and in forgetting, she will no longer exist. Everyone leaves, ignoring Mab's furious calls, and soon, she fades away into nothing, just the way she had feared from the beginning.
At the film's conclusion, the wizened Merlin is shown as a pauper telling his story for money. An aged Frik finds him, mentioning, "It's not exactly as I remember," to which Merlin replies, "They like it better this way." After following Frik, he finds his aged magic horse. Frik then says it will lead him to his love, Nimue. When Merlin asks how, Frik says that when Mab disappeared forever, so did the remnants of her magic, allowing Nimue to escape her magic prison. Merlin thanks his old friend and mentor for everything, but Frik modestly replies, "Oh, there's no need to thank me. I just love happy endings". So Merlin rides off to find Nimue, while Frik then fades away into memory, along with all the other magical beings. Merlin finally finds and embraces Nimue, at the old forest home of Ambrosia. Both lovers are now old, but Merlin uses one last trick to restore their youth so that they can finally spend their lives together. His closing words are "That's the end of magic."
It was produced by Dyson Lovell and directed by Steve Barron. The story is by Edward Khmara with the teleplay written by David Stevens and Peter Barnes.
Illustrator Alan Lee served as the film's conceptual designer. Despite heavy fantasy elements, the production is historically accurate to a degree, in keeping with the probable origins of the Arthurian legend in Sub-Roman Britain. The costumes and props used in the film include Dark Age or Early Medieval Celtic and Roman-style weapons (e.g. Iron Age swords) and armor (e.g. mail, scale and leather), while other Arthurian films like Excalibur, Knights of the Round Table and First Knight use High Medieval or Late Medieval-style weapons (e.g. long-swords) and armour (e.g. full suits of plate). However, some anachronisms are present, like the use of the terms "knight" and "Sir" and the presence of the Roman logical segmentation armour years after it was discontinued.
Nicholas Clay, who played Lancelot in John Bormann's 1981 film Excalibur, has a small role as Guinevere's father, Lord Leo. Paul Curran, who played the adult King Arthur, played Kay alongside Jason Connery as Merlin in Merlin: The Quest Begins, an unrelated television movie released the same year.
Directed by Steve Barron
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