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Adventures of Ali-Baba and the Forty Thieves (1980 film)

  (Redirected from Alibaba Aur 40 Chor (1980 film))

Adventures of Ali-Baba and the Forty Thieves (Hindi: अलीबाबा और चलीस चोर, translit. Alibaba Aur 40 Chor, Russian: Приключения Али-Бабы и сорока разбойников, translit. Priklucheniya Ali-Baby i soroka razboynikov) is a 1980 Indian-Soviet film based on the Arabian Nights story of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, directed by Uzbek director Latif Faiziyev with Indian director Umesh Mehra, and starring Indian actors Dharmendra, Hema Malini and Zeenat Aman alongside Russian, Caucasian and Central Asian actors. The storyline is slightly altered to extend as a long movie. The writers were Shanti Prakash Bakshi and Boris Saakov, the music was scored by musician R.D. Burman, and the Choreographer was P. L. Raj.[2][3][4] It was the most successful Indian-Soviet co-production, becoming a success in both India and the Soviet Union.

Adventures of Ali-Baba and the Forty Thieves
Indian poster
Directed byLatif Faiziyev
Umesh Mehra
Produced byF.C. Mehra
Written byShanti Prakash Bakshi
Boris Saakov
Based onAli Baba and the Forty Thieves
(Arabian Nights)
Music byRahul Dev Burman
Release date
  • 30 May 1980 (1980-05-30)
Running time
153 minutes
Box office$28.13 million (₹221.13 million)



The story is about a poor lad named Ali Baba (Dharmendra) who lives in the town of Gulabad, somewhere in Central Asia, with his mother and elder brother Qasim who owns a small petty shop. Ali Baba's father Yousuf is a merchant in a faraway land who has never returned since he last left when Ali Baba was born. So poor Ali Baba makes a living out of selling timber cut from the hills. Gulabad is terrorized by a band of 40 dacoits. They hide their loot in a magical cave in the deserted hills. When the bandit leader recites the magical spell it opens and when he says another spell it closes. When news reaches them that his father has gone missing, Ali Baba goes in his search and not only finds his father, but also rescues princess Marjeena (Hema Malini) from the guards of the king who murdered her father to become king. Both Marjeena and Ali Baba fall in love with each other. Then they are attacked, Marjeena is taken captive, and his father is killed. After burying his father, Ali Baba finds out that Marjeena is being sold in the slave market, he borrows money from Qasim, and uses that to pay for Marjeena, and brings her home. Qasim wants to recover his money, and as a result decides to evict Ali Baba from their family home. Ali Baba and his mother leave the home. It is then the Khazi of the region announces a reward for the capture of notorious bandit Abu Hassan. A young girl named Fatima (Zeenat Aman) whose father has been murdered by the dacoits has a score to settle with Abu Hassan (Rolan Bykov). Fatima pledges her support to Ali Baba in killing Abu Hassan. Shortly, thereafter Ali Baba comes to know the secret hideout of Abu Hassan and its magic spells to open it. He also gets some gold and jewelry from there, which he distributes amongst villagers for diverting some water to their parched land. Ali Baba’s greedy brother Qasim lures Ali Baba into telling him where the cave is and what the magic spells are. Out of greed, Qasim takes so much gold jewelry and coin, as a result of which, he forgets the spell to reopen the door and gets stuck inside. When the dacoits find him they kill him. Ali Baba then informs the Khazi about Abu Hassan's hideout. What Ali Baba does not know is that the Khazi and Abu Hassan is the same person, and that the Khazi has given instructions to his men to ensure that Ali Baba is killed, so that no one can get their hands on his treasure. Abu Hassan hides the 40 thieves in large urns to kill Ali Baba. Ali Baba comes to know of this and kills them all with the help of Fatima. He brings to light the startling truth that their own ruler heads the dacoits.



# Title Singer(s)
1 "Jadugar Jadoo Kar Jayega" Kishore Kumar, Asha Bhosle
2 "Khatouba" Asha Bhosle
3 "Sare Shahar Mein" Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle
4 "Aaja Sar-E-Bazar" Lata Mangeshkar
5 "Qayamat" Lata Mangeshkar

Box officeEdit

Ali Baba was the most successful Indian-Soviet co-production, becoming a financial success in India and an even bigger hit in the Soviet Union.[5] In India, it was the eighth top-grossing film of 1980, earning ₹30 million nett from a gross collection of ₹60 million[6] ($7.63 million).[7] It reached silver jubilee status after running in theaters across India for 25 weeks continuously.[5]

In the Soviet Union, it was the fifth top-grossing domestic film of 1980, and the 32nd highest-grossing domestic film of all time, with 52.8 million box office admissions.[1] This was equivalent to approximately 13.2 million Soviet rubles[8] ($20.5 million,[9] ₹161.13 million).[7] Worldwide, the film grossed $28.13 million (₹221.13 million). This is equivalent to $86 million (₹5.469 billion) adjusted for inflation in 2017.


The film wons awards at several film festivals, including the All-Union Film Festival in 1980,[10] the Dushanbe Film Festival in 1980,[4] and the Grand Prix at the Belgrade Film Festival in 1981.[5][4]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Sergey Kudryavtsev (4 July 2006). "Отечественные фильмы в советском кинопрокате".
  2. ^ Malhotra, A. P. S. (4 March 2017). "Alibaba Aur 40 Chor (1979)". The Hindu. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  3. ^ The Illustrated Weekly of India, Volume 101, Issues 18-34
  4. ^ a b c "Приключения Али-Бабы и сорока разбойников – в Багдаде все спокойно". Nashfilm. Retrieved 13 October 2007.
  5. ^ a b c Salazkina, Masha (2010). "Soviet-Indian Coproductions: Alibaba as Political Allegory" (PDF). Cinema Journal. 49 (4): 71–89 [72–73]. doi:10.1353/cj.2010.0002.
  6. ^ "Box Office 1980". Box Office India. Retrieved 29 October 2008.
  7. ^ a b "Official exchange rate (LCU per US$, period average)". World Bank. 1980. Retrieved 11 December 2018.
  8. ^ Moscow Prime Time: How the Soviet Union Built the Media Empire that Lost the Cultural Cold War, page 48, Cornell University Press, 2011
  9. ^ "Archive". Central Bank of Russia. 1972. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
  10. ^ КИНО: Энциклопедический словарь, главный редактор С. И. Юткевич, М. Советская энциклопедия, 1987, с.83

External linksEdit