Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves

1944

Adventure / Fantasy

0
IMDb Rating 6.4

Synopsis


Downloaded 630 times
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720p
1.06G
Normal
English
/
87 min
P/S 60 / 106

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Bunuel1976 7

The Alexander Korda production of THE THIEF OF BAGDAD (1940) - still the quintessential Arabian Nights movie - led to a spate of colorful romps made by Hollywood studios to escape the grim everyday realities of WWII; this may not be the best or even the most enjoyable of the lot but is reasonably representative of this fantasy sub-genre.<br/><br/>Actually, I had intended to watch this over last year&#39;s Christmas period as it was shown on Italian TV very early one morning but the transmission started even earlier than expected and consequently I had to abort the viewing; therefore, I am grateful that (in spite of some deficiencies which I&#39;ll get to later) I remedied this through a copy of the Asian DVD I&#39;ve just gotten hold of.<br/><br/>The film obviously deals with the famous tale of the title but here Ali Baba (Jon Hall) is the son of a deposed (and subsequently murdered) Caliph who as a boy (played by Scotty Beckett) found refuge in the thieves&#39; hide-out inside the cave and was raised by their leader (Fortunio Bonanova) as his own son. Meanwhile, Ali&#39;s childhood friend grows up to be Maria Montez and is naturally coveted by the evil tyrant now in power at Bagdad (Kurt Katch). Andy Devine is also on hand to provide some mild comic relief as Baba&#39;s &quot;nursemaid&quot; and Turhan Bey (like Hall and Montez, also a regular in such diversions) is Montez&#39;s only male slave and sympathetic to Ali&#39;s cause.<br/><br/>As I said, the film is fairly entertaining and, as can be expected from a grade-A Universal production, handsomely mounted but it mainly survives nowadays on its high quotient of nostalgia both to people of my father&#39;s generation (who were around when this subgenre was still in full bloom) and to others who, like me, grew up on these things when they played during the summer holidays on TV. To get back to the presentation of the film on the disc I watched: while the all-important colors were not as vibrant as a full-blown restoration job would have made them look, the print was serviceable all around...were it not for the very odd fact that it omitted the opening and closing credits completely! <br/><br/>In any case, this satisfactory viewing has brought back fond childhood memories of similar costume pictures and has certainly whetted my appetite for more; I also received a bunch of Sinbad pictures at the same time that this disc arrived and I ought to purchase the recently released DVD of ARABIAN NIGHTS (1942) one of these days - although, frankly, I think Universal missed the boat when they didn&#39;t release it as part of an Arabian Nights franchise collection which could have also included, apart from ALI BABA AND THE FORTY THIEVES itself, any of the following: BAGDAD (1949), THE DESERT HAWK (1950), FLAME OF ARABY (1951), THE PRINCE WHO WAS A THIEF (1951) and SON OF ALI BABA (1952). This is not to mention many other such extravaganzas made by other film studios which are still unreleased on DVD like ONE THOUSAND AND ONE NIGHTS (1945), SINBAD THE SAILOR (1947), THIEF OF DAMASCUS (1952), SON OF SINBAD (1955), THE THIEF OF BAGDAD (1961; an Italian remake with Steve Reeves supervised by ALI BABA helmer, Arthur Lubin), THE WONDERS OF ALADDIN (1961; another Italian production which utilized the now legendary and multi-faceted talents of Mario Bava), etc. One final thing: I once missed out on a TV screening of the 1954 French version of ALI BABA AND THE FORTY THIEVES starring Fernandel and directed by Jacques Becker and, even though it doesn&#39;t have much of a reputation (especially within its director&#39;s considerable canon), I&#39;d love to watch it for myself one day...

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Reviewed by billfishfanatic 10

I have a fairly sophisticated taste in cinema classics so I am a bit ashamed to rate this as one of my Favorite films of all time. I must cite first and foremost the sublime and under-rated masterpiece of a score by Edward Ward WHICH DESERVES A CD FOR SURE!!-Kurt Katch as Hulagu Khan is one of the screens most odious villains and the very fast pace all add to it&#39;s delight.....FOR ME-Weird, but not once in the entire film does handsome Jon Hall as Ali ever actually kiss Lady Amara, the exotic Maria Montez! Another bonus is the the vision of loveliness that is GORGEOUS Ramsay Ames as the incredibly HOT, sexy and traitorous lady in waiting Nalu who betrays her mistress-I just have to own up that GULP....I love this flick! PS-What a tragedy that Bagdad today is not the happy one that we find at this film&#39;s conclusion. SO SAD.

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Reviewed by ma-cortes 6

Technicolor fantasy about an overthrown prince , marvelous maidens , gorgeous princess , several happy-go lucky thieves and many other things . It deals with Ali and a gang of thieves doing battle against Hulagu Khan , leader of Mongols who wants the throne for himself and orders as a hundred citizens shall be tortured to death each day , until the head of the caliph is brought before him . Being children , the prince Ali , son of Caliph (Moroni Olsen) promises eternal love to Amara . But the Mongol Army destroys the city of Baghdad with help of prince Cassin (Frank Puglia) , father of Amara. Then Ali escapes and he shelters in a cave in which thieves hide their loot. A wily young enlist the aid of a band led by Baba (Fortunio Bonanova) and Abdulla (Andy Devine is fun as nursemaid lookalike) to outwit the Grand Mongol (Kurt Katch) and to save Baghdad and its citizens from death and ruin . One time grown-up Ali (John Hall) seeks vengeance and retrieve his lover (Maria Montez of Cobra woman , Arabian nights). Baghdad in the times of the Mongol invasion the Caliph has escaped , Khan orders find him , every day until he dies a hundred of his subjects will be tortured . And so far ten years the Mongols held Baghdad and the people died in agony and only the band of thieves made resistance. A bounty is offered , ten thousand pieces of gold for the body of Ali Baba and the destruction of the band of thieves by order of Hulagu Khan of the Mongols and ruler Baghdad.<br/><br/>Lavish spectacle and good casting overcomes the somewhat sluggish storytelling that combines a number of familiar ¨one thousand and one nights¨ tales . Technicolor adventure fantasy adorned by beautiful cinematography by Howard Greene and George Robinson , filmed on location in Coral Pink Sand Dunes Road, Kanab, Utah, and Red Rock Canyon State Park - Highway 14, Cantil, California, USA . Striking and evocative musical score by Edward Ward . This Universal spectacle is glamorously directed by Arthur Lubin (Thief of Bagdad , Phantom of Opera , Escapade in Japan, the mule Francis series ). Easy to take , it&#39;s a good rendition of this oft-told story

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