A Thousand and One Nights (1969 film)
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|A Thousand and One Nights|
|Directed by||Eiichi Yamamoto|
|Distributed by||Nippon Herald Movies|
|June 14, 1969|
A Thousand and One Nights (Japanese: 千夜一夜物語, Hepburn: Senya Ichiya Monogatari) is a 1969 adult Japanese anime feature film directed by Eiichi Yamamoto, conceived by Osamu Tezuka. The film is a first part of Mushi Production's Animerama, a series of films aimed at an adult audience.
The film was a hit in Japan and was given limited screenings in America in 1970, but the film did very poorly, as an X-rated cartoon did not seem to appeal to an audience. The dubbed version of the film was very hard to find, and was considered lost for a while, however, the trailer for the English dub was recently found, and anime distributor Discotek Media discovered and restored the English dub and released it on Blu-ray alongside the original Japanese version on November 24, 2020. The English-dubbed version was cut to 100 minutes. The film predates the more successful release of Fritz the Cat, the first American X-rated animated film, by three years.
Aldin, a poor, traveling water seller, falls in love with Miriam, a beautiful slave woman on auction in Baghdad, but Havasalakum, the son of the chief of police, buys her. Before he can take her home, a sand storm interrupts the auction. Aldin uses the opportunity to steal away the slave woman, rescuing her from slavery. They hide from pursuing guards in a seemingly empty mansion. They have sex there, and are secretly watched by the master of the mansion, Sulaiman, who locks them in and commands them to continue. Havasalakum and his guards invade the mansion, where he finds them and takes Miriam. Badli, the right-hand man of the chief of police, murders Sulaiman. Aldin is tortured and sent to prison by mistake for the murder of Sulaiman.
One year later, Aldin is set free. Meanwhile, a heartbroken Miriam dies in childbirth. Aldin meets Badli in the desert. Aldin threatens to kill him, but shows him mercy and lets him leave. Aldin finds the magic cave where Kamahakim and the forty thieves hides their treasure. Aldin follows a thief inside, and as the thieves are asleep, he begins stealing the treasure. Madia, a young female thief, awakens and threatens to kill Aldin, who convinces her to see the world with him. The two fly away on a magic wooden horse. While they are crossing the ocean, living hair pulls them down.
They then find themselves on the Lotus Island, which is home to beautiful Sirens. Their queen invites them to stay, but Madia becomes jealous and does not trust them. She leaves on the magic horse while Aldin stays and has sex with the sirens. The queen forbids Aldin from following her into her house in the woods at night, but he still does so, and he is shocked when the queen and the sirens transform into snakes. The snakes chase him, but Aldin flees from the island and is rescued by sailors. He travels with the sailors to a mysterious island, which is inhabited by a man-eating giant who eats most of the crew while Aldin survives. Aldin then finds a magical, sentient ship that will take him anywhere and fulfill almost any of his wishes.
15 years later, two genies on a carpet come across a shepherd named Aslan, which the female genie falls for. The male genie, in hopes of keeping the other genie from risking death by being seen by the shepherd, brings a beautiful princess named Jalis, who is comes from Baghdad, but teleports her away when things start going wrong. The male genie, in a huff, leaves the female genie, as she transforms into a horse when Aslan hopes to go to Baghdad. When Aslan and Princess Jalis cross paths in the desert, leaves the genie disappears from sight.
Meanwhile, Aldin, now became a rich man, enters a competition in Baghdad, the winner of which will become king. He wins the competition by tricking his opponent onto his magical ship, and by commanding the ship to take him to the end of the world. Aldin tries to use his power as the king to make Princess Jalis – who is Miriam's daughter – marry him, but she is in love with Aslan. Aldin commands the people to build a tower to heaven. The people hate him and revolt, led by Aldin's second-in-command. Not prepared for the pressures of kingship, Aldin gives up the throne to travel the world as a poor man again, now seeing the value of freedom and peace.
- Yukio Aoshima as Aldin
- Kyōko Kishida as Miriam/Princess Jalis
- Sachiko Itō as Madia
- Isao Hashizume as Aslan
- Haruko Kato as the Genie
- Noboru Mitani as Gin
- Hiroshi Akutagawa as Badli
- Asao Koike as Kamahakim
- Shūsaku Endō, Junnosuke Yoshiyuki, Morio Kita, Sakyō Komatsu and Yasutaka Tsutsui as onlookers in the female slave market
- Sōichi Ōya, Sen Saga and Minoru Ōmori as senate members
- Kyosen Ōhashi as a ticket scalper at the horse race
- Takehiko Maeda, Danshi Tatekawa and Chinpei Nozue as horse race spectators
- Kunika Kizaki as the quack doctor
- Takako Andō
- "A Thousand and One Nights (partially found English dub of anime film; 1969)". lostmediawiki.com. Retrieved 21 July 2017.
- "Discotek liscenses Detective Conan: Episode One, Love hina again,S-CRY-ed Anime". animenewsnetwork.com. Jennifer Sherman. Retrieved 3 May 2020.