MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 1,670 this week

Ali Baba Goes to Town (1937)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Fantasy, Musical  |  29 October 1937 (USA)
8.1
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.1/10 from 394 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 4 critic

A movie company is doing the Arabian Nights when a hobo enters their camp, falls asleep and dreams he's back in Baghdad as advisor to the Sultan. In a spoof of Rosevelt's New Deal, he ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play), 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

IMDb Picks: April

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in April.

Related News

Tony Martin obituary
| The Guardian - Film News

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 529 titles
created 14 Mar 2012
 
a list of 252 titles
created 24 Jun 2012
 
a list of 44 titles
created 05 Oct 2012
 
a list of 3181 titles
created 16 Jan 2013
 
a list of 99 titles
created 26 May 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Ali Baba Goes to Town (1937)

Ali Baba Goes to Town (1937) on IMDb 8.1/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Ali Baba Goes to Town.
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Whoopee! (1930)
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Western sheriff Bob Wells is preparing to marry Sally Morgan; she loves part-Indian Wanenis, whose race is an obstacle. Sally flees the wedding with hypochondriac Henry Williams, who thinks... See full summary »

Director: Thornton Freeland
Stars: Eddie Cantor, Ethel Shutta, Paul Gregory
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Young freewheeling wanderer Jerry Day and his beautiful wife Toni are at odds over their lifestyle. Jerry can't accept responsibility but Toni yearns for a family and a settled life. Then ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Hathaway
Stars: Gary Cooper, Carole Lombard, Shirley Temple
Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An orphan is provisionally adopted by the manager of a hotel populated by show business people. The hotel's owner doesn't like the entertainers and wants the girl returned to the orphanage.

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Shirley Temple, George Murphy, Jimmy Durante
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Meek Eddie Pink becomes manager of an amusement park beset by mobsters.

Director: Norman Taurog
Stars: Eddie Cantor, Ethel Merman, Sally Eilers
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

In the small town of Brookford, everybody can trace their ancestors back to the Revolutionary War, except Sam and Susie Parker. One day, however, they find a letter written by George ... See full summary »

Director: Gordon Douglas
Stars: Eddie Cantor, Joan Davis, Allyn Joslyn
Action | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The O'Leary brothers -- honest Jack and roguish Dion -- become powerful figures, and eventually rivals, in Chicago on the eve of its Great Fire.

Director: Henry King
Stars: Tyrone Power, Alice Faye, Don Ameche
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A young lawyer is unable to get the Pembertons to sign a land sale contract until their daughter falls in love with him.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Ann Sothern, Jack Haley, Mary Boland
Palmy Days (1931)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Musical comedy antics in an art deco bakery (motto: "Glorifying the American Doughnut") with Eddie Cantor as an assistant to a phoney psychic, who is mistaken for an efficiency expert and ... See full summary »

Director: A. Edward Sutherland
Stars: Charlotte Greenwood, Barbara Weeks, Spencer Charters
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Eddie and his Mexican friend Ricardo are expelled from college after Ricardo put Eddie in the girl's dormitory when he was drunk. Per chance Eddie gets mixed up in a bank robbery and is ... See full summary »

Director: Leo McCarey
Stars: Eddie Cantor, Lyda Roberti, Robert Young
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

When Phil Corey's band arrives at the Idaho ski resort its pianist Ted Scott is smitten with a Norwegian refugee he has sponsored, Karen Benson. When soloist Vivian Dawn quits, Karen stages an ice show as a substitute.

Director: H. Bruce Humberstone
Stars: Sonja Henie, John Payne, Glenn Miller
Now I'll Tell (1934)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Golden is a two-bit gambler who has promised wife Virginia he'll quit when he makes $200,000. When he fixes a fight he gets mobster Mossiter mad, then loses his fortune to him. He pawns his... See full summary »

Director: Edwin J. Burke
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Helen Twelvetrees, Alice Faye
Honeymoon (1947)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A prospective bride and groom have misadventures in Mexico City.

Director: William Keighley
Stars: Shirley Temple, Franchot Tone, Guy Madison
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Yusuf / Himself
...
Sultan
June Lang ...
Princess Miriam / Herself
...
Sultana / Louise Hovick (as Louise Hovick)
Raymond Scott and His Quintet ...
Themselves (as Raymond Scott and his Quintet)
...
Ishak / Broderick / Himself
Virginia Field ...
Dinah
Alan Dinehart ...
Boland
...
Prince Musah (as Douglas Dumbrille)
Maurice Cass ...
Omar - The Rug Maker
Warren Hymer ...
Tramp
Stanley Fields ...
Tramp
Paul Hurst ...
Captain
Sam Hayes ...
Radio Announcer
Edit

Storyline

A movie company is doing the Arabian Nights when a hobo enters their camp, falls asleep and dreams he's back in Baghdad as advisor to the Sultan. In a spoof of Rosevelt's New Deal, he organizes work programs, taxes the rich and abolishes the army. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

new deal | taxes | sultan | spoof | dream | See All (41) »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 October 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nuits d'Arabie  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA High Fidelity Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Newsreel footage of the many stars appearing at the Carthay Circle Theatre premiere of Wee Willie Winkie (1937) is used for the film's finale. See more »

Quotes

Ali Baba: Wait, I think I've got something! You don't have to be a sultan - you can resign!
Sultan: Resign? Desert my throne? Forsake my people? Allah would never forgive me.
Ali Baba: You don't have to desert your people. You can go on being the head man, but instead of sultan you become a president.
Sultan: A what?
Ali Baba: A president, like they have in America.
Sultan: Well, does he rule the country?
Ali Baba: Does he rule the country? Hunh! Ask the Republicans!
See more »

Connections

Version of Ali Baba and 40 Thieves (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

Arabania
(1937) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Revel
Lyrics by Mack Gordon
Performed by Raymond Scott and His Quintet
Danced by The Pearl Twins
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The New Deal To The Old Caliphate
30 January 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Ali Baba Goes To Town anticipates the war in Iraq by several decades. Just as we are at war to democratize Iraq and its capital Bagdad, so Eddie Cantor is in Iraq by himself to bring the New Deal to the old caliphate. The populace seems to take to it somewhat better.

Cantor is young Al Babson hitchhiking on a freight car to Hollywood when while doing a little soft shoe to entertain fellow tramps Stanley Fields and Warren Hymer he falls out of the car and in the desert. Not to worry though, he lands in the middle of a sand and sandal Arabian picture that 20th Century Fox was shooting. The film has the look of the kind that Maria Montez would do at Universal in the next decade. He gets hired as an extra.

However in a big scene where he's one of many to pop out of a giant jar, Eddie over medicates himself on his many pills and falls asleep and dreams himself back into old Bagdad. The people he meets there are suspiciously like the stars of the film he's on like June Lang, Tony Martin, and Roland Young. Young makes a rather urbane sultan who takes to Cantor, so much so he makes him his prime minister. Cantor proceeds to introduce the New Deal to Bagdad and gives the people some ideas of democracy.

That does not sit well with a trio of villains, Douglass Dumbrille, John Carradine, and Louise Hovick. If you don't recognize the name Louise Hovick, she was a minor starlet at Fox who would leave their shortly for another career involving exposure under the better known name of Gypsy Rose Lee.

Cantor did this whole thing before and much better in Roman Scandals. In real life Cantor was a number one booster of the New Deal of Franklin Roosevelt and the satire is somewhat blunted. It's also somewhat dated and you'd really have to be familiar with both Cantor and the Thirties to get a lot of the jokes.

Tony Martin is in the film as a young reformer type or what passed for one in old Bagdad. I got a feeling that a lot of his role was left on the cutting room floor. He makes no mention of Ali Baba Goes To Town in his joint memoir with Cyd Charisse.

Ali Baba Goes To Town did not fare well at the box office even with the presence of a whole lot of guest stars in the film via newsreel clips from the premiere of Wee Willie Winkie. By mutual consent Darryl F. Zanuck and Eddie Cantor did not make any more films and Cantor was off the screen for three years.

The film is really for Eddie Cantor fans and for those who'd like to familiarize themselves with one of the greatest entertainers of the last century. But there are far better filmed examples of his work.


8 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Ali Baba Goes to Town (1937) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?