Ali Baba & the Gold Raiders
Ali Baba & the Gold Raiders is a 2002 Hong Kong animated film adapted from the One Thousand and One Nights story, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. produced by Joseph Lai of Space Thunder Kids and Beauty and Warrior fame.
Ali Baba is out in the desert searching for firewood when he hears someone approaching. He hides in a nearby tree to see a gang of thieves open their hideout with a magic word "Open Sesame". After the thieves leave, Ali Baba steals some of the hidden treasure and brings it home to his wife. They decide to ask his brother, Kaseem Baba, for his "magic measuring bowl" to see how much gold they have, as they decide to split it with their neighbors and friends Kaseem and his wife get suspicious and inspect the bowl later, finding a single gold coin. Kaseem forces Ali Baba to give the location of the hideout. He then brings along several donkeys so he can carry as much treasure as he can. He becomes trapped in the cave and is found by the thieves. He begs for his life as the scene fades to black. Kaseem's wife tells Ali Baba that her husband has gone missing, and Ali Baba goes to the caves, then returning home to his wife and sister in law as she breaks down crying (implying Kaseem was murdered by the thieves). The thieves soon find out it was Ali Baba who originally stole from them and head to the village he lives in, marking his door with an x so they can return in the night to get their revenge. Ali Baba's wife catches on and marks many of the doors in the village with an x to throw off the thieves. The thieves later gather at Ali Baba's house to spy on him, then attack. Ali Baba and the women get the upper hand and beat up the thieves, exacting revenge for the death of Kaseem Baba.
Why It Sucks
- There are a few moments where the movie is ripping-off Disney's Aladdin. Some of them include:
- An instrumental for "Prince Ali" is played in one scene, then played over itself as the music ends.
- The one scene where Kaseem's grabbing treasures, like he's saying and grabbing the anachronistic objects like the Genie did.
- One of the forty bandits looks heavily resembles to the Genie (the one with blue skin and a ponytail), but with legs.
- Horrendous and lazy animation, which looks like it comes from a CD-I game.
- The walk cycles make it look like they're sliding across the screen.
- Awful dialogue. The characters frequently yammer on and on about nothing and to nobody, and the actors keep talking over each other.
- False Advertising: The artstyle in the actual film does not look anything like the one in the cover.
- The characters are bland and almost have no personality.
- At some points in the movie, the same short animation is looped over at least a minute.
- Kaseem's requests of getting the magic cave door to open are just ridiculous, and at one point he mentions Osama bin Laden, which feels very out of place in a kids’ movie and incredibly disrespectful to the victims of a recent tragedy.
- Many characters and items don't fit the theme of the movie and look like they're from a later time period, therefore anachronism is rampant, similar to The Swan Princess Christmas.
- One of the characters can be seen wearing what appears to be a version of the Batman logo on his clothing.
- The movie plays its own trailer first before the actual movie, giving away the plot.
- Sometimes, the movie's plot is very slow moving. At the beginning of the movie, there are about one and a half minutes of no dialogue and looped animation.
- Some sound effects are out of place.
- The lip-syncing is atrocious.
- The only action scene isn't very fluent.
- There are multiple animation errors.
- The movie doesn't have a proper ending, as it just ends with the leader of the thieves just repeating the same words over again like a broken record.
As an Easter egg, you can see the text reading "Bening Studio" on the left side of the screen on a black bar.