The Masters  
The Powell & Pressburger Pages

Dedicated to the work of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger and all the other people, both actors and technicians who helped them make those wonderful films.

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Submitted by Roger Mellor

The Thief of Bagdad (1940)
"Radio Times" film guide

Director - Ludwig Berger, Michael Powell and Tim Whelan [and a few other uncredited ones]
Starring - Conrad Veidt & Sabu
Running Time - 101 mins
Country of Origin - UK

A wonderfully atmospheric Arabian Nights adventure for children of all ages, particularly young lads who can identify with Sabu singing "I want to be a bandit, can't you understand it?" - part of a marvellous score by Miklos Rozsa, which, incidentally, was the first ever to be committed to record. Producer and co-director Alexander Korda spared no expense to bring the magic to the screen, undeterred by the outbreak of war which necessitated decamping from England to Hollywood, not to mention using five other directors! Oscar-winning Technicolor photography and sumptuous art direction make this - Douglas Fairbanks Sr's silent version notwithstanding - the definitive movie of this particular tale. With a giant genie (Rex Ingram [the actor, not the director that Powell worked with in Nice]), flying carpets, magical mechanical horses, a beautiful princess (June Duprez), Sabu himself, and a wickedly wicked grand vizier in the person of Conrad Veidt, what more could any adventure-seeker ask for?

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