The Thief of Bagdad (1940) Poster

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Probably the best "Arabian Nights" film ever made.
otter6 March 1999
Most of the genre of "Arabian Nights" films were silly, cheesy, low-budget things, like "The Prince Who Was A Thief" starring Tony Curtis as an Arabian prince with a Brooklyn accent. This is an exception: A genuinely magical film, one of the best fantasy films ever made.

A beautiful film made in the most glowing of technicolors, it tells the simple story of a boy thief (Sabu) meeting a dethroned prince (the gorgeous John Justin), and helping him defeat the wonderfully evil usurper Conrad Veidt. Like "The Wizard of Oz" made the year before, the performances are so good that you believe in what you see on the screen. Flying carpets and horses, towering genies, dancing idols, it all seems perfectly believable and exiting. A classic.
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Still a Solidly Wonderful Fantasy After Sixty-Plus Years
Ralph Michael Stein15 February 2004
The story of the boy thief of Bagdad (as it was once spelled) has attracted filmmakers from Raoul Walsh in 1924, who starred Douglas Fairbanks in the first, silent, rendering of "Thief of Bagdad," to less imposing, more recent attempts. The best, however, remains 1940's version which for its time was a startling, magical panoply of top quality special effects. Those effects still work their charm.

No less than six directors are listed for the technicolor movie which starred Sabu as the boy thief, Abu, John Justin as the dreamily in love deposed monarch, Ahmad and June Duprez as the lovely princess sought by Ahmad and pursued by the evil vizier, Jaffar, played by a sinister Conrad Veidt. The giant genie is ably acted by Rex Ingram.

Ahmad is treacherously deposed by Jaffar and when later arrested by that traitorous serpent, he and the boy, Abu, suffer what are clearly incapacitating fates. Ahmad is rendered blind and Abu becomes a lovable mutt. Their adventures through the gaily decorated Hollywood backlots are fun but the special effects make this film work.

Two men were responsible for everything from a magic flying carpet to the gargantuan genie who pops out of a bottle with a tornado-like black swirl: Lawrence W. Butler and Tom Howard. (Howard, incidentally, did the special effects for the 1961 version of this film. Both men had long and distinguished careers in technical wizardry.)

Duprez is outstandingly lovely while little called on for serious acting. Justin's Ahmad projects a driven but dreamy romanticism untouched by erotic impulses. Sabu is really the central actor in many scenes and he's very good. For a movie meant for kids as well as adults there's a fair amount of violence but of the bloodless kind. Still, I don't think anyone under eight ought to see "Thief of Bagdad."

This film makes periodic appearances on TV but today my teenage son and I saw it in a theater with quite a few youngsters present. It was great to see computer-besotted kids in an affluent community respond with cheers and applause to special effects that must seem primitive to them.

"Thief of Bagdad" is a pre-war Hollywood classic from a time when strong production values often resulted in enduringly attractive and important releases. This is one of the best of its kind.

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Enchanting fairy tale!
Nazi_Fighter_David26 December 1999
"The Thief of Bagdad" is impressive in the shape of the evil magician Jaffar (Conrad Veidt). He plots with lies and magic spells to obtain the kingdom from its rightful ruler the young King Ahmad, and a gorgeous princess from her father...

He falls victim in the end, as all tyrants do (in books and legends) to love and of the common man whom he ignored, here embodied by the little thief (Sabu).

The armies of good and evil, black and white, are superbly realized in both visual and literary terms...

The script is poetic, simply and very beautiful... The costumes of the magician and his men rising and falling like the wings of black birds, attacking suddenly in the night to inflict destruction and create terror...

The radiant hero wears white turbans and robes, and his princess is dressed in pinks and pale blues...

For spectacular scenes it matched all that had gone before, while through its use of color, it brought to life a world such as had not seemed possible before...

With flying carpet and flying white horse, with a giant genie (excellently played by Rex Ingram), with evil wizards, and with the good acting of Sabu and Veidt, "The Thief of Bagdad" captures the quality and true atmosphere of the Arabian Nights...

The 1940 version remains the screen's finest fairy tale!
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Gosh, it's colourful
Spleen1 July 1999
Like the Arabian Nights this film plays with storytelling conventions in order to make us feel that there's plot, plot and more plot: it opens with what appears to be the frame device of a blind man telling the story of his life, then plunges into a flashback which takes us right up to the blind man's present, where we discover that about half of the story is yet to come. (It must be admitted that the second half doesn't quite live up to the promise of the first.) Like the Arabian Nights it tries to cram as many Middle-Eastern folk motiffs as possible into the one work. A freed genie, a beautiful princess, a flying carpet, fantastic mechanical toys, sea voyages, a crowded marketplace, a wicked vizier, jewels ... I don't know why it all works, but it does. Everything is just so beautiful. The sets are beautiful. June Duprez is beautiful. Rozsa's score is especially beautiful. As usual, it sounds Hungarian; but somehow he manages to convince us that he's being Hungarian in a Persian way.
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blue-73 December 2002
I first discovered Alexander Korda's (1940) Fantasy, THE THIEF OF BAGDAD in the early 1950's on a re-issue billed as "The Wonder Show of the Century!" Both Korda Technicolor films, THE THIEF OF BAGDAD and JUNGLE BOOK were shown on one never to be forgotten program. The music of Miklos Rozsa enhanced both films. The Technicolor in each was incredibly beautiful! THE THIEF OF BAGDAD has remained on my list as the best fantasy film ever made. As the years passed, it became more difficult to enjoy the film's color in the way it had originally been presented in. True Technicolor gave way to a Eastman Color process in the middle 1950's. Both Kino and Samuel Goldwyn reissued the film both theatrically and on video. But the Eastman Color prints were more pastel in nature and muted the vibrancy of the original Technicolor. The Laser Disc release of this title also has the pastel look to it -- nice, but not as it should be. NOW comes the M-G-M DVD (3 Dec 2002) issue. THE THIEF OF BAGDAD again has the wonderful Technicolor look to it on a DVD that is nothing short of STUNNING!!! It was so exciting to see it like this once again that after viewing the DVD once, I watched it a second time. The only "Extras" are a Spanish Dubbed version, Sub-Titles in both English & Spanish, and a beautifully done original theatrical trailer. Thank you M-G-M for this EXCEPTIONAL DVD release. Now, one can only hope that Korda's FOUR FEATHERS and a restored version of Korda's JUNGLE BOOK (to replace to poor public domain prints in circulation) will soon follow on DVD.
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A Historical Treasure, And Good Family Entertainment
RBGatHome6 June 2003
The Thief of Bagdad is a treasure. First and foremost, it is a good story. Though my four children's primary exposure to this tale, the most famous of the stories of the Arabian Nights, comes from the Disney Corporation, the Thief of Bagdad held their interest to the end. The story moves along at a good pace and includes a twist or two that reduced predictability. Sabu, who plays the young thief, Abu, also measures up to any of today's teen actors in appeal, judging from the number of times I heard my oldest daughter say, "He's c-u-t-e!"

In 1940, the film won Oscars for cinematography and special effects. Today, of course, those effects seem very dated ("Look, it's Barbie flying through the air," declared my daughter at the sight of the genie flying). Yet they fit into the story well. The film is, after all, over 60 years old. The effects fit with the script. Furthermore, what ones sees in The Thief of Bagdad remained pretty much state-of-the-art for the next twenty-five years. One need only compare the opening montage from a 1967 Star Trek episode to see this. In that, it was quite an achievement.

This qualifies as a family film, though there are a few stabbings near the end. The acting is so obvious and the wounds so bloodless as to those scenes nearly as artificial as animation.

All in all, a fun film worth watching for either an evening of pure entertainment, or for the historical value of the effects. I recommend it.
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Truly "A Remant From The Golden Age"
Gary17045928 October 2007
An utterly beautiful film, one of a handful of I saw when young that entranced me then and still do, in Thief's case the impression actually seems to get better with the passing of time. By the '90's my daughter and I had seen it many times on TV but still went to the pictures when it came to the local art-house cinema – when it had finished we came out starry eyed with heads full of poetry and Miklos Rozsa's stirring music wishing it could have lasted a couple of hours longer and thinking what a beautiful world it suddenly was again.

Idealistic Prince Ahmad wants to slum it amongst his people for a while to check things out, but evil Vizier Jaffar takes his chance to imprison him and seize the throne. After escaping with a little thief played by Sabu, Ahmad spots a Princess and they fall blindingly in love – along the way they have many adventures (although apparently not enough for Sabu!) and Love not only conquers but annihilates everything. The special effects must have been mesmerising in 1940, but Time has taken its toll and lessened their impact especially since digital cartoonery has taken over even live action – but they still hold up well compared against films like Superman from 40 years later. Anyway, if I'm requested to suspend disbelief in gargantuan guffawing genies, flying horses and carpets I also suspend disbelief in perfect special effects! Favourite bits: the dreamy scene in the sunlit garden when Ahmad reveals himself and Adelaide Hall's suitably romantic song; the stunning colours in the tent in the Land Of Legend – in fact, the stunning colours throughout; Sabu and Rozsa's triumphant but still wistful finale. Conrad Veidt played the baddie in two of the most incredible movie romances ever, this and Casablanca, and then died. John Justin and June Duprez were great in the leading roles of lovers, both of them slightly and refreshingly stilted, but the parts didn't call for a huge range of emotions: only pure love mattered.

There's a couple of mildly violent images in it, but rest assured this is a glorious feelgood experience with a 100% positive message, it's only a pity that nowadays little kids don't watch this instead of the porn they prefer. One of my Top 10 film favourites, I can't recommend this too much – may it be shown to the end of Time.
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Impressive fairy tale of good prince and thief versus evil vizier full of fantastic elements
ma-cortes16 May 2009
This is an Oriental fantasy about ¨thousand and one Arabian nights¨ plenty of incredible adventures, fantasy witchery and wizardly. The malignant vizier Jaffar (magnificently played by Conrad Veidt)with powerful magic faculties imprisons the prince Ahamad of Bagdad(attractive John Justin)who loses his throne, then he escapes thanks a little thief named Abu(sympathetic Sabu). They arrive Basora where Ahamad and the princess(gorgeous June Duprez) fall in love. But prince and thief are haunted by Jaffar , Ahamd is turned blind and Abu is become a dog. The story accumulates several fantastic ingredients such as transformation of the starring, a flying mechanic horse, magic bow, flying carpet and of course the colossal genie(overacting performed by Rex Ingram) who gives three wishes to Sabu , the magic eye, the figure of goddess Kali with several hands, among others.

This remarkable picture ranks as one of the finest fantastic films of all time. Produced by London Fim's Alexander Korda and directed by the definitively credited Ludwing Berger, Michael Powell and Tim Whelan with a stunning screenplay by Lajos Biro and Miles Malleson also dialogs writer and actor as Sultan fond to mechanic games. The WWII outbreak caused the paralyzing shooting, then the three Korda brothers and collaborators traveled USA continuing there the filming in especial on Grand Cannon Colorado.The splendid visual and glimmer Technicolor cinematography , setting and FX provoked the achieving three Oscars : Production design by William Cameron Menzies and Vincent Korda ,Cinematography by George Perinal and Special effects by Osmond Borradaile though today are dated and is urgent a necessary remastering because the colors are worn-out. Furthermore one nomination for the evocative and oriental musical score by Miklos Rozsa. This vivid tale with immense doses of imagination will like to fantasy fans and cinema classic buffs
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A masterpiece for all the ages
This is simply one of my favorite fantasy films of all time. Not many movies are so magical, so charming and so imaginative as this. I can clearly see the influence of this movie in many movies that came later, but not many of them were as good as this one. "The Thief of Bagdad" had everything that you could want from a fantasy films: An exciting, unpredictable story, charming and likable characters, and an incredible, beautiful atmosphere and incredible visuals (That still look pretty good)

I wish there were more movies like this. I would give this movie eleven stars if I could. I highly recommend it to anyone!
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A fantasy for the century
sitdownsmith8 August 2002
I grew up with this as my all-time favorite film. The special effects are incredible for the era, and won awards. I can remember the dialogue as if I'd heard it yesterday. It is simply a great, timeless adventure. The music is by Miklos Rosza, who is cinema history's best. Sabu is the Thief. Conrad Veidt is the grand villain. I have a copy within reach, for the next trip down memory lane. Whoa there! Rex Ingram wants out of his genii bottle!
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An enchantment.
dbdumonteil5 August 2003
Few movies appeal to both adults and children.This one does .Although there are three directors,it is most likely Michael Powell who's the brains here,his later work proves it in a definite way.There are already the incredible color search and the fabulous settings which will emerge again in such works as "a matter of life or death"(1946).Magic is everywhere and there are plenty of visual strokes of inspiration :every picture is magic itself.The script writers adapt stories from the Thousand and one Nights but make them their own .The special effects ,although absolutely extraordinary for 1940,remain tasteful ,which is not often the case today when they mainly serve to hide the weakness of the screenplays.

Conrad Veidt is a delightful villain,who might have inspired Walt Disney for "Aladdin" .June Deprez,whose talent is essentially decorative ,will play the part of Vera Claythorne in "and then there were none" (René Clair,1945).Sabu is certainly one of the best young actors of the era. John Justin is the perfect virtuous hero.

Compares favorably to Jean Cocteau's "la Belle et la Bête" (1945).

Remake by Arthur Lubin with muscle man Steve Reeves in 1961:although it's a far cry from this version,it's not bad .
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rube242411 November 2002
After 60 some odd years THE THIEF OF BAGDAD is still one of the most

wondrous movies ever made. Filmed in wartime England and without the

use of digital imagry, the film soars and makes believers of us all.

From Rex Ingram's memorable Genie, (has any laugh been better than his

rumbling "BoohooHAHAHAH"?) to the Flying Horse, the six armed murderous

doll, the immense spider and on and on, the film excites in a visceral

way that no FX person could duplicate today. Though we can see through

the primitive special effects, the genius of this film is that the story

is told so well that we suspend our disbelief and fly along on a magic

carpet ride that never flags for all of its almost two hour running

time. Miles Malleson's script (he also plays the heroine's father in a

delightful turn), is filled with what we now see as cliches, but they

still bring a silly grin to our faces as we acknowledge them, and love

them all the same. The acting is WAY over the top and absolutely delightful. Sabu is

perfect as the little thief Abhou, John Justin stalwart as the hero

Ahmed, Conrad Veidt all snarly and despicable as the evil Jafar and June

Duprez all gauzy and creamy as the princess. The real star of the film, the glue that holds all the pieces

together,however, has to be Miklos Rozsa whose musical score evokes

every Arabian Nights fantasy that we have ever dreamed. What glorious

music, what a wondrous fim! (I was lucky enough to get an advance copy

of the new DVD of THIEF OF BAGDAD. What a great print. Wait till you

see it! It will knock your socks off.) I love Spielberg and I love

Lucas, but oh THE THIEF OF BAGDAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Little hero, big adventure
stamper14 September 2002
This film, was one of my childhood favorites and I must say that, unlike some other films I liked in that period The Thief of Bagdad has held on to it's quality while I grew up. This is not merely a film to be enjoyed by children, it can be watched and enjoyed by adults as well. The only drawback there is, is that one can not see past the ‘bad' effects (compared to the effects nowadays) like one could when one was a child. I remembered nothing of those effects, of course it had been about ten years since I'd seen this film, when I was about eleven years old. Who then watches effects? One only seeks good stories and entertainment and this is exactly what this film provides. In my mind this film is one of the first great adventure films of the 20th century. Coming to think of it I feel like the Indiana Jones films are quite a like this film. There is comedy, romance and adventure all in one, which creates a wonderful mixture that will capture you from the beginning until the end and although the film is old and the music and style of the films is clearly not modern, it succeeds in not being dusty and old. All of that is mainly due to the great story, the good directing and the good acting performances of the actors. In that department Sabu (as Abu) and Conrad Veidt (as Jaffar) stand out, providing the comedic and the chilling elements of the film for the most part. Great film and although an 'oldie', definitely a ‘goldie'. I hope someone has the brain and guts to release this one on DVD someday.

8 out of 10
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Incredible! (May include spoilers.)
Esmeralda26 June 2002
Warning: Spoilers
I loved this film when I was twelve and thirteen. The effects are simply incredible - I especially like the djinni and the flying horse. I always identify with the Princess and admire Abu's intelligence and bravery. I also noticed very early that I deeply hated Jaffar, although I couldn't explain to myself what it was that made him so hateful.

The film is exceedingly exciting, and I always put my soul totally into the plot. At the end, I always rejoice of the fulfillment of the prophecy.

The actors are also superb, and the music is wonderful.
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oftenwrong12 April 2002
The first time I saw this movie, I was blown away by it's sheer fantasy content. I am a fan of fantasy anyway, and for a film of this time (1940) I was impressed by Alexander Korda's ability to completely immerse one so completely in the story. I believe that during the war-time period these films were especially important for a lot of people in order to distract them, in a positive way, and allow them a brief respite from the harsh realities and depressing aspects of the war. I think that this film had probably fit the bill at that time and even nowadays, it does take you away from the everyday and allows you to indulge in a wonderful tale of fantasy, romance, magic, throughout. June Duprez was stunning and otherworldly in her looks and performance. John Justin played a wonderfully enchanting Ahmed, although I found Sabu's character a bit tedious at times, the rest of the movie, for it's time, was top-notch. A great escapist, put your feet up and enjoy the afternoon, movie. I give it a 7.8 out of 10.
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This film is an original and authentic masterpiece
tommc2 March 2002
I first saw Thief as a child which makes me almost as old as the Jinn I guess. As any kid would be, I was delighted with the imagination, inventiveness and energy of the film. Several years later, I realized how much of the satire and wit of the script I had missed on that first viewing. I have never passed up an opportunity to watch it throughout the intervening years. In addition to the script, the production transcends the fantasy genre. This is Korda, the storyteller at his very best. When you see Thief as a child you know that you`ve had a great time. When you see Thief as an adult you know that you`ve seen a masterpiece. It`s as timeless as the story it treats. An amazing work.

Thomas McCarthy
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Perfect fairytale fantasy in gorgeous British technicolor...
Neil Doyle22 May 2001
One of the most enjoyable fantasies of all time (with flying horses, flying carpets, dancing idols, daring escapes) is given even more dimension by the performance of Conrad Veidt as the villainous Jaffar. He is the perfect embodiment of a fairytale villain and gives the film the extra punch it needs.

June Duprez has never been more beautifully photographed as the princess and John Justin and Sabu do well as the prince and thief (respectively) who have to settle a score with Conrad Veidt. All of it is handsomely costumed and photographed in the subdued technicolor common to British films at the time (which has a washed out look in some sections of the video print I own).

Filmed under harsh wartime conditions, it nevertheless managed to win three Academy Awards for Special Effects, Color Cinematography and Color Art Direction. An enjoyable treat for young and old.

One has to wonder what Universal might have done with this story material if produced for their co-starring team of Maria Montez and Jon Hall.
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There is magic in the number three...
Artemis-917 June 2003
Three flash-backs introduce the main characters (Abu, Jaffar, and the Princess) who will interact with Ahmad; three are the songs, each linked to those same characters. Three times does Ahmad pronounce the absolute word 'Time', in his declaration of love to the Princess, answering her three questions at their first of three meetings. So strong is the impression he causes, that the Princess will resist the three attempts by Jaffar to conquer her - by three successive ploys: deceit, hypnosis, and memory erasing. Yet, Jaffar owns what he describes as the three inescapable instruments of domination over a woman: the whip, the power, and the sword. Three is the number of flying entities: the mechanical-horse, the Genie, and the The Genie and the magic carpet. The Genie offers three wishes to Abu at their first of three encounters; three times does the Genie laugh loud in the mountain gorges, and three are his considerations about human frailty, before he departs. Abu overcomes three obstacles in the Temple of Dawn (armed guards, giant-spider, and giant-octopus). Three are the instruments of justice: the magical eye that shows Abu the future, the magical carpet that transports him just in time to save Ahmad and the Princess, and the bow-and-arrow to execute Jaffar. There's magic in the number three, and there is magic in this movie.
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A Thousand And One Adventures
Ron Oliver22 July 2005
Abu, THE THIEF OF BAGDAD, helps King Ahmed regain his kingdom from a wicked sorcerer.

As Europe was going to war and significant sections of the world was going up in flames, Sir Alexander Korda's London Films unveiled this lavish escapist fare from the legends of The Arabian Nights. Replete with swords & sorcery, it gave audiences in 1940 a short respite from the headlines. It also is a fine piece of film making, featuring good acting and an intelligent script.

Conrad Veidt gets top billing and he deserves it, playing the evil magician Jaffar. His saturnine face with its piercing eyes makes one recall the macabre roles he played with such relish during Silent days. Here is a villain worth watching. As the boyish Thief, Sabu is perfectly cast in this, his third film. While not a hero in the typical sense of the word, his character is certainly heroic in deed & action.

The rest of the cast do fine work. John Justin is both energetic & sensitive as the unenlightened king who must learn about the realities of live the hard way; Sabu gets a significant part of the action (when he's not transformed into a dog) but Justin is appropriately athletic when needs must. Lovely June Duprez plays the endangered Princess of Basra, coveted by two very different men. Appearing late in the film, massive Rex Ingram shakes things up as a genie with an attitude.

Allan Jeayes uses his fine voice to good advantage as the Storyteller. Miles Malleson gets another eccentric role as the childlike Sultan of Basra, forever dithering on about his mechanical toys (Malleson was also responsible for the film's screen play & dialogue). Aged Morton Selten portrays the benevolent King of Legend. Mary Morris, later an exceptional stage actress, plays the dual roles of Jaffar's accomplice and the six-armed Silver Dancer.

The film was begun in Britain, but wartime difficulties made Korda move it to Southern California, which probably explains the presence of American Ingram in the cast. The art direction, in vibrant Technicolor, is most attractive, especially the fairy tale architecture in blues, whites & pinks.


Born Sabu Dastagir in 1924, Sabu was employed in the Maharaja of Mysore's stables when he was discovered by Korda's company and set before the cameras. His first four films (ELEPHANT BOY-1937, THE DRUM-1938, THE THIEF OF BAGDAD-1940, JUNGLE BOOK-1942) were his best and he found himself working out of Hollywood when they were completed. After distinguished military service in World War II he resumed his film career, but he became endlessly confined for years playing ethnic roles in undistinguished minor films, BLACK NARCISSUS (1947) being the one great exception. His final movie, Walt Disney's A TIGER WALKS (1964) was an improvement, but it was too late. Sabu had died of a heart attack in late 1963, only 39 years of age.
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A Wondrous Tale
bkoganbing3 February 2010
The making of The Thief Of Bagdad is quite a story unto itself, almost as wondrous as the tale told in this film. Alexander Korda nearly went broke making this film.

According to the Citadel Film series Book about The Great British Films, adopted son of the United Kingdom Alexander Korda had conceived this film as early as 1933 and spent years of planning and preparation. But World War II unfortunately caught up with Korda and the mounting expenses of filming a grand spectacle.

Budget costs happen in US films too, only Cecil B. DeMille always had a free hand at Paramount after 1932 when he returned there. But DeMille nor any of his American contemporaries had to worry about enemy bombs while shooting the film. Part of the way through the shoot, Korda transported the whole company to America and shot those sequences with Rex Ingram as the genie in our Grand Canyon. He certainly wasn't going to get scenery like that in the UK. Korda also finished the interiors in Hollywood, all in time for a release on Christmas Day 1940.

The spectacle of the thing earned The Thief Of Bagdad four Academy Award nominations and three Oscars for best color cinematography, best art&set direction for a color film, and best special effects. Only Miklos Rosza's original musical score did not take home a prize in a nominated category. Korda must have been real happy about deciding to shoot in the Grand Canyon because it's impossible to get bad color pictures from that place.

The special effects however do not overwhelm the simple story of good triumphing over evil. The good is the two young lovers John Justin and June Duprez and the evil is Conrad Veidt as the sorcerer who tries to steal both a kingdom and a heart, both belonging to Duprez. This was Veidt's career role until Casablanca where he played the Luftwaffe major Stroesser.

Of course good gets a little help from an unlikely source. Beggar boy and thief Sabu who may very well have been one of the few who could call himself at the time an international movie star. Literally rising from poverty working as an elephant stable boy for the Maharajah of Mysore he was spotted by Alexander Korda who needed a native lead for one of his jungle features. Sabu captures all the innocence and mischievousness of youth as he fulfills the Arabian Nights fantasy of the boy who topples a tyrant. Not a bad message to be sending out in 1940 at that.

The Thief Of Bagdad holds up remarkably well today. It's an eternal tale of love, romance, and adventure in any order you want to put it.
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Great fantasy
Steve Crook23 June 2002
Despite having 6 different directors, this fantasy hangs together remarkably well.

It was filmed in England (nowhere near Morocco) in studios and on a few beaches. At the outbreak of war, everything was moved to America and some scenes were filmed in the Grand Canyon.

Notable for having one of the corniest lyrics in a song - "I want to be a bandit, can't you understand it". It remains a favourite of many people.
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What can i say? This is a classic!
Funkypizza200123 December 2001
Ever since i was a little child my father used to play this movie for me over and over again, because he loved it so much, and so as i got older, i started to appreciate this film as much as him. There are Unforgettable parts in this film like the big spider fight between Abu and the spider, and then there was the magic carpet ride at the end. The most rememberable character is The Genie. I really loved that Genie especially when you and Abu first meet him. I hope that if you never saw this movie you rent it because it is a great film you will never forget.

***** stars out of *****.
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A Journey to the Childhood of Many Generations
Claudio Carvalho25 October 2016
In Bagdad, the young and naive Sultan Ahmad (John Justin) is curious about the behavior of his people. The Grand Vizier Jaffar (Conrad Veidt) convinces Ahmad to walk through the city disguised as a subject to know his people. Then he seizes the power telling to the inhabitants that Ahmad has died while he sends his army to arrest the Sultan that is thrown into the dungeons and sentenced to death. Ahmad befriends the young thief Abu (Sabu) that helps him to escape from the prison. They flee to Basra and plan to travel abroad with Sinbad. However Ahmad stumbles upon the beautiful princess (June Duprez) and they fall in love with each other. But the evil Jaffar has also traveled to Basra to propose to marry the princess. When they see each other, Jaffar uses magic to blind Ahmad and turn Abu into a dog. Is their love doomed?

Watching "The Thief of Bagdad" is a journey to the childhood of many generations, when television was in black and white and this film was one of the favorite of the children. In 2016, "The Thief of Bagdad" is still delightful with impressive special effects for a 1940 film with magic flying carpet, jinn, flying horse and fantastic journeys. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "O Ladrão de Bagdá" ("The Thief of Bagdad")
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Advanced film for its time
yoda-606 October 1999
Thief of Bagdad is truly advanced for its time. It has very good special effects. The use of flying carpet sequences is very advanced for 1940. In good prints the color is spectacular. The acting is somewhat stilted, but acceptable for a period piece. Both costume and set design are superior. The music is excellent. Most elements of the film fit together to provide a superior piece of "fluff" entertainment.
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This movie is an absolute must in any video library.
dondoyle-16 August 2005
The Thief of Baghdad is one of my ten all-time favorite movies. It is exciting without gore, it is beautifully filmed and the art direction is flawless. The casting couldn't have been better. Rex Ingram made me believe in genies. And the epitome of evil is certainly captured by Conrad Veight as Jafar. He set the bar very high.

..I watch this movie at least twice a year...and never tire of it. This film is an adventure for all too old to enjoy it. The Thief of Bahgdad jogs my memories to a more innocent time...I was ten years old the first time I saw it and the U.S. was just about to enter WWII. Conrad Vieght was such a great actor that he was able to continue this underlying "evilness" a few years later in "Casablanca." And Korda teamed up,I believe, with Justin and Dupree again in "The Four Feathers"....great film-making!
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