7.9/10
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Ali Baba Goes to Town (1937)

Approved | | Comedy, Fantasy, Musical | 29 October 1937 (USA)
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 »

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Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Yusuf / Tony Martin
...
...
...
Sultana / Louise Hovick (as Louise Hovick)
Raymond Scott and His Quintet ...
Raymond Scott Quintete
...
Ishak / Broderick
...
Dinah
...
Boland
...
Prince Musah (as Douglas Dumbrille)
Maurice Cass ...
Omar - The Rug Maker
...
Tramp
...
Tramp
...
Captain
Sam Hayes ...
Radio Announcer
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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:

remake | new deal | taxes | sultan | spoof | See All (42) »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 October 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nuits d'Arabie  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA High Fidelity Recording)

Color:

(tinted)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The effect at the end of the Swing Is Here To Stay number in which the dancers lean forward at a 45 degree angle was achieved by nailing their shoes to the floor. See more »

Goofs

The story is set in tenth-century Baghdad but reference is made to the sultan's being the ruler of Arabia. Baghdad is in Iraq or, as it would have been known then, Mesopotamia. See more »

Quotes

Sultan: I hope you'll enjoy what we've got - if you don't mind taking pot luck?
Ali Baba: Can I get a hot dog and a bottle of pop?
Sultan: Hot dog? Pop?
Ali Baba: That's the great national diet in America. I've just come from there.
Sultan: America? Where is that?
Ali Baba: A great open space between New York and Hollywood.
See more »

Connections

Version of La cueva de Ali-Babá (1954) See more »

Soundtracks

The Sidewalks of New York
(1894) (uncredited)
Music by Charles Lawlor
Played briefly during the Ali Baba campaign parade
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Eddie Cantor and the Peters Sisters
23 March 2015 | by See all my reviews

Bright musical comedy with Eddie Cantor as a hobo who wanders onto a movie set and gets hired as an extra. He falls asleep and dreams he's back in ancient Bagdad.

In ancient Bagdad he's taken as a relative of Ali Baba and gets involved in the palace intrigue where the Sultana (Gypsy Rose Lee as Louise Hovick) and her allies are plotting to overthrow the Sultan (Roland Young). Cantor cracks an endless stream of one-liners about Roosevelt's "New Deal," which of course no one understands. The plot then has Cantor running for president against the Sultan. But it's all a dream.

The two show stoppers are the extended "Swing Is Here to Sway" with Cantor joined by dancer Jeni Le Gon and the fabulous Peters Sisters, and the "Twilight in Turkey" number by Raymond Scott and Quintet and danced by the Pearl Twins. Great stuff.

Co-stars include Tony Martin, June Lang, John Carradine, Virginia Field, Alan Dinehart, Stanley Fields, Warren Hymer, and Lynn Bari as a harem girl. The Peters Sisters, Mattye, Anne, and Virginia, just about steal the show from Cantor, who discovered them at a local nightclub and put them right in his movie.

One of Cantor's best.


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