Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ November 25, 2017
The new MST3K Netflix original has been released and I decided to expose myself to some of the old episodes available for streaming on Hulu and Netflix (there is a different random selection on each platform). Whether it is Joel or Mike watching these awful movies with the bots I do not envy the torture they are put through. Their snarky comments add some entertainment value, but my ratings are based on the movie's quality itself and not the extra material broadcast from the satellite of love. Mid 90s contemporary with the Mike Nelson era of MST3K itself. Older bad movies have a nostalgic quality. They were doing the best they could with VERY limited resources. Video equipment was more available to the masses (this was still before everyone had access to digital tools), but skill and resources are still in limited supply. A movie like this that is so bad in every respect just makes me sad. This is an episode that I had to skip through. I could only skim through this mess with a grandpa (Borgnine) telling his grandson of Merlin's shop, which then splits into two other creepy, hacked plots.
June 24, 2015
Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders is a movie of majestic tackiness. Bringing us two films in one, the latter even worse than the former, the picture follows a non-believer goofing up Wizard spells, before slowly closing on a murderous stuffed monkey with the ability to blow things up at the clap of a cymbal.
Characters speak in a constant tone of confusion, as bewildered by their lines as we are, creepy Merlin caresses folk in the street, and the second story is longer than the ol' Sorcerer's dusty beard. Merlin states, "You play with magic, you're gonna get old. And fast.", and quite frankly watching this movie has a very similar effect. Perhaps that's its true magic?
½ November 24, 2013
Whoever's idea it was to create a quasi-family film using old pieces of failed horror movies was most likely a lunatic. Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders is one of the most bizarre films, as far as tone goes, that you're ever likely to see. One minute grandpa (Ernest Borgnine) is telling this young boy a story about Merlin's magical shop and then the next it turns into a couple of horror stories that are way more adult-oriented. It's a bit nutty to be sure. The latter film was actually another film by the same director called The Devil's Gift, re-edited to fit the story with Merlin. The film was famously featured on an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000, with a lot of great laughs to go along with it. The problem is thought, you just can't hate on this movie. You can only scratch your head at it and wonder why it was made in the first place.
October 18, 2013
A dull and unfunny horror movie aimed towards kiddies but a bit to mature and boring for the target age group. The acting isn't as bad as some of these low budget films but Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders is nonetheless just as bad.
July 21, 2013
It reminds of my infancy, even though it's definitely not a movie for children, I think the good stories the movie tells were the beginning of my "career" as a horror fan hehe.
½ April 17, 2013
What the hell kind of crappy movie is this?
January 22, 2013
Hilariously bad! While I saw it on MST3K, I wouldn't mind owning this without the Satellite of Love's commentary.
September 1, 2012
A grandfather desperately tries to give his grandson nightmares with two dark stories guaranteed to scare young children and bore adults. The second half features a suspiciously similar toy from a Steven King story.
½ May 29, 2012
Watch the MST 3K version!

"If you don't believe in magic.... I'll kill you"
½ January 28, 2012
I saw this on MST3K. I can't believe it's on here. Watch the MST3K version for some laughs
October 24, 2011
Awful film that doesn't know what its audience wants, goofy animal killings be damned. Thank goodness MST3K got me through this trainwreck. Also, the synopsis and photo for this entry are inaccurate.
½ September 6, 2011
Not generally bad as much as it is very, very tonally off-key from the title and general tales of Merlin and Camelot. The MST3K is hilarious, but the movie does itself little favor with how ridiculous most of it is. Some of it is genuinely horrifying, however.
November 4, 2010
Extremely bad kids movie that offers plenty to laugh at. Be sure to watch the hilarious MST3K riff, since it is by far my favorite episode.
whosinthenews
Super Reviewer
January 24, 2010
"My reviews have destroyed entire cities!"
December 15, 2009
What the heck were they thinking making this film? Were they on crack or something?
November 18, 2009
how the hell is this even a kids film? god the movie makes clear reffrences to human fetirly issues and depicts cruel ways how a cat and dog die. shit the cat belonged in stephen kings pet semetary with the way it looked. personaly one of the worst movie ive foolished viewed recently.
½ September 17, 2009
A half star is too generous but this is basically two movies edited together to make another movie about an old man telling his grandson stories of Merlin, which aren't really about Merlin. The first seems like a Tales from the Darkside episode that never aired. The second looks like it was made 10 years before the movie was made. It was. A silly movie about a critic who casts spells and shoots fire out of his mouth and a toy monkey that can kill people when it bangs its cymbals together. But all it seems to kill is the family dog. Horrible movie and to thing Ernest Borgnine used to be a respected movie.
½ August 5, 2009
This is the third MST3K film I've watched in three days, and though it only rates Flixster's minimum half-star, it is not the worst (the worst was "Outlaw of Gor", which I reviewed yesterday before discovering it was not even listed on Flixster; what? This is a serious oversight!)

The film is completely worthless as expected (it's 21st in IMDb's chart of the worst films ever), trying to bring a story about Merlin opening a shop in California in 1996 (how dumb is that for a premise?) to feature length by patching in a subplot about an evil monkey that gets stolen from the shop and bought by a family of people living in 1984 (the time travel is never explained, but I suggest it was performed by reusing footage from "The Devil's Gift", the other movie Kenneth J. Berton made.)

The result is completely incoherent, not only because the two stories have nothing to do with each other, but also because the Santa-Claus Merlin actually unleashes satanic forces into the world (with Satan himself showing up at one point) in the name of bringing back the sense of wonder into our technocratic, scientistic age, and then goes to bed with a sense of accomplishment.

My big question is: why didn't Kenneth J. Berton rise from the grave in 2008 to turn this film into another mishmash by shooting a new wraparound twelve years later? Did something happen to him?

My favorite lines from the MST3K commentary include: "I don't like the way they're portraying the Devil. It's so biased!"; "Good. Now she has to raise her horrible husband." "That's what most wives think they do anyway"; "Come out or I'll review you!"; and "I keep a full dossier on evil-monkey buyers." But unfortunately, you have to endure the film to enjoy the humour, which is the only reason why anyone should want to see it.
½ July 9, 2009
Absolutely terrifying, particularly for a "children's movie" -- also, what's going on with that random scene 15 minutes into the movie when two ladies talk about their fertility problems. Where did THAT come from? Actually, that could be said of the whole movie.
June 13, 2009
the funniest movie ever. the director shot half a movie then added the rest from his other movie devils gift made more than 10 years earlier. the only way he was able to link them was with a toy monkey. it is probably one of the best movies i have ever seen.

Watching the movie again on DVD with the help of MST3K was fun it is such a bizarre film and is great one because of the film itself and also the jokes the MST3K crew shows. I just love how the piece together movie works and how the name sounds like a childrens movie but it is far from that. There is an interview on the DVD that was fun to watch too had a lot of info on how the show was put together, shot and written. Kevin Murphy says that there are two types of MST3K movies ones that are bad on their for their obsurd reasons and the other are movies that are fun to watch because of the jokes they make on them. I feel that both are true and both are fun to watch. Some movies on their own that they show are actually worth seeing alone separately while others you are glad you are with them.
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