A spectacular accomplishment in production design and special effects, Raoul Walsh’s The Thief of Bagdad is a bold Arabian adventure starring Douglas Fairbanks as a carefree pickpocket who turns his appealing brand of mischievous thievery toward the attainment of happiness… and an exotic princess (Julanne Johnston). The only way he can win either is by retrieving the rarest treasures hidden within the mysterious Orient, a quest that grows more fantastic with every passing thrill, as the tenacious thief rises high above the city on a magic carpet, battles a fire-breathing dragon in caverns of flame and soars into the clouds on the back of a winged steed via innovative special effects. —Kino International
Raoul Walsh’s 52-year directorial career made him a Hollywood legend, and the slam-band nature of his best films means that he is still remembered while the memory of Allan Dwan, a director with an equally long career, has practically faded from public consciousness. Walsh was also an actor: He appeared in the first version of W. Somerset Maugham’s Rain renamed Sadie Thompson (1928) opposite Gloria Swanson in the title role. He would have played the Cisco Kid in his own film In Old Arizona (1928) if an errant jackrabbit hadn’t cost him his right eye by leaping through the windshield of his automobile. Warner Baxter filled the role and won an Oscar. Before John Ford and Nicholas Ray, it was Raoul Walsh who made the eye-patch almost as synonymous with a Hollywood director as Cecil B. DeMille’s jodhpurs.
He interned with the best, serving as assistant director and editor on D.W. Griffith’s racist masterpiece, The Clansman, better known as read more
1924 epic telling (at least in length) of 'The Thief of Bagdad' is still a rip roaring adventure even some almost 90 years later. Fairbank's mugging gets a little ripe from time to time but film consistently remains interesting despite its 155 minute runtime. Some of the effects still look great with rich sets and art deco for the time period.