The Thief of Bagdad: Friday… in stereo! (and sterotypes)

Well, it was fun, and I must admit, for the era, the special effects and cinematographic techniques are pretty nifty, even if they seem impossibly clunky by modern standards. It’s more Arabesque then Arabic, of course, as one might expect from an American and British production, and of course none of the actors are even the slightest bit Arabic, but I guess you can do a lot with expressive moustaches. The acting isn’t deep, but the plot gives a pretty good time with what’s basically a Sir Richard Burton pastiche: evil vizier, silly sultan, thief with a heart of gold, princess in a garden, deposed king, djinni, magic carpet, haggling in market-squares, shake well and serve. This wasn’t supposed to be grand cinema for the ages so much as a fun way for folks to think about something besides the war for 90 or so minutes. And, hey, it worked for me.

See also: IMDB, Wikipedia.


About Jake
I'm a mathematics professor at the University of Louisville, and a geek.

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