1001 Arabian Nights (1959)

1001 ARABIAN NIGHTS (1959)
Article #487 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 7-15-2002
Posting date: 12-8-2002

An evil wazir tries to use a young lad to acquire a magic lamp with a genie, but fails to contend with the lads Uncle Abdul Azziz Magoo.

This UPA feature-length cartoon is your basic animated version of the Aladdin story with Mr. Magoo thrown in for good measure. It’s slight and not particularly hilarious, but I don’t think it’s trying to be; if it was any bigger, it might warp its charms. These include the stylish and bizarre backdrops (a UPA trademark) and the score, which is always slightly jazzy but never heavy-handedly so, which serves as a nice counterpoint to the visual style. Though it has songs, it never really becomes a musical; some of them are woven into the story so delicately you may not even notice you’re in the middle of one. All in all, though it can’t compete with Disney, it carves out its own unique little place in the animation pantheon.

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