Lavish sets and costumes distinguish this story of two brothers competing for the throne of Turkey and the hand of the fiery dancing girl Scheherazade. A colorful, escapist Technicolor fantasy and the first pairing of Hall... more » and Montez. Academy Award Nominations: 4.« less
Maria Montez , Queen of Technicolor, at last on DVD
John Malanga | Pacifica, CA United States | 11/30/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"At last, Universal is releasing the first Maria Montez & Jon Hall adventure classic in glorious Technicolor. I was surprised to see that this was not part of a Collection of 6 Montez films, but happy to get these 1940s classics any way Universal wants to release them. ARABIAN NIGHTS (1942) is great Saturday-matinee fun, but some of the others are even better: COBRA WOMAN (1944) is by far the best, with Montez playing dual roles. ALI BABA AND THE 40 THIEVES (1944) is also a wonderful action adventure, as are WHITE SAVAGE (1943), SUDAN (1945) & GYPSY WILDCAT (1944). I hope Universal will soon release all of these long-neglected classics. I have been waiting a long time. If you are looking for exotic, colorful, action adventure in beautiful Technicolor, you are in for a great treat."
"(Action/Adventure, 1 hr 26 min, Technicolor) Universal - U.S.A.DIRECTOR: John RawlinsCAST: Edgar Barrier, Leif Erickson, Billy Gilbert, Thomas Gomez, Jon Hall, John Qualen, Sabu, Shemp Howard, Maria Montez (As: Sherezade)COMMENTS: The legal heir to the throne of the Caliph, played by Jon Hall, is attacked and almost murdered by his evil brother, played by Leif Erickson, who seizes the throne. A dancing girl (Maria Montez) finds the wounded heir and nurses him back to health. They fall in love, and he sets off on a series of adventures accompanied by a trusted friend (Sabu), an aging Aladdin in search of his mislaid lamp (John Qualen), and a bragging, shiftless Sinbad in his declining years (Shemp Howard). It's all adolescent adventure but great fun and the production is lavish in all areas, particularly the costumes, sets, and wonderful, lush color which the public was impressed with. The film earned Oscar nominations for Best Cinematography, Best Interior Decoration, Best Sound, and Best Score. To Maria, it was her first important role, as the beautiful dancer Scherezade, considering that she had to deal with an absurd dialogue. And this was the movie that gave her the nickname of "The Queen of Technicolor"."
GREAT ADVENTURE TALE FOR WHOLE FAMILY
logan_a | New York | 09/19/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"From the foolish acts of her father, Sheherazade is cast under a spell by evil caliph. But, true love (Shemp) is artfully working to save her. The forty-thieves come to ride. Sabu (from the Jungle Book) helps until he finds a curiosity in an old Genie's lamp. This is the first teaming of Montez, Hall, and Sabu. Thankful the successful trio went on to make more. If some reviewers find this tale trite, perhaps it is because it lacks the gore and step-by-step sex of other flicks. This is for the whole family and to me, a fun tale. Enjoy"
Scherezade in Arizona
altera-a | Canary Islands, Spain | 03/14/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"One of the most beloved escapisms from 40's Warner Bros., that features Maria Montez, Sabu and Jon Hall as the most energetic trio in this sexy camp classic, that it's a sure, colorful entertainment; a rollercoasting Hollywood carnival.
The real show on this is the presence of that genius named Maria Montez, an incredibly bad actress, that finds her way in this type of nonsensical "It is Written" adventures, that makes the desert of Arizona the ideal faking for Arab-themed stories. She's ideal with cheap jewelry and exaggerated make-up, and dancing with an inneffable style (her dancing shows in these films are astonishing, specially in Cobra woman)."
Must-see Arabian fantasy
Byron Kolln | the corner where Broadway meets Hollywood | 02/14/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Universal's first movie in complete three-strip Technicolor was ARABIAN NIGHTS, produced by Walter Wanger and starring the gorgeous South American spitfire, Maria Montez.
While it's not entirely faithful to the original stories and legends on which it bases itself, ARABIAN NIGHTS comes alive with lots of colour and pageantry. Jon Hall and Maria Montez (in the first pairing of a long screen partnership) are wonderful to watch. The cast also boasts Sabu and Turhan Bey.
The new DVD from Universal's Cinema Classics line boasts a newly-restored Technicolor transfer, plus a fun introduction from Turner Classic Movies host Robert Osborne. (Single-sided, single-layer disc)."