ALI BABA AND THE FORTY THIEVES (1944)
aka Ali Baba & los 40 Ladrones
(Action/Adventure, 1 hr 27 min, Technicolor)
Universal - U.S.A.
Scotty Beckett, Turhan Bey, Andy Devine, Jon Hall, Frank Puglia, Kurt Katch, Maria Montez (As: Amara)
This Arabian Nights fantasy follows the exploits of the Caliph of Baghdad's son, who runs off into the desert after his father is killed by raiding Mongols.
There he encounters the legendary 40 thieves and watches in amazement as their command, "Open Sesame," magically parts a solid rock wall, revealing a cavernous hiding place filled with treasures.
He is adopted by the thieves, dubbed "Ali Baba," and grows up to be their leader. As an adult, Ali sets out to avenge his father's death and to free his land from the reigning Mongols.
The film is set in the ancient Middle East. Maria Montez stars as Amara, a Baghdad beauty, who is one of the main reasons of the fight between the Mongol Khan Hulagu and Ali Baba.
In this time, Maria demonstrated that she will never accept to do scenes or scene parts against her will. For instance, the director Arthur Lubin tried to convince her of appearing naked inside of a pool, the problem was solved when Lubin accepted to put her in a bubble bath.
Before beginning working in the most popular and commercial movie of its time, Maria said to the media: "According to my horoscope, the name I will have in this movie will not augur me success."
The producers thought Montez wanted to change the name they assigned her and they allowed her to do so.
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