A to Z Challenge – Aladdin

Aladdin - PosterAladdin

1992

Directed by Ron Clements and John Musker

Quick synopsis… Street-smart Aladdin and Princess Jasmine join forces to save the kingdom from the evil sorcerer Jafar. Along the way, Aladdin learns to believe in himself with help from a hilarious Genie… and three wishes that can change everything.

  • I mean, really, is there anything better than Robin Williams as the Genie?
  • Did you know he’s also the voice of the traveling salesman at the start of the movie?
  • I read somewhere that they got Williams in the recording studio with a table full of stuff on it and just told him to have at it.
  • So when he’s going through some of the things he has for sale, it’s just Robin Williams doing improv.
  • I wonder how much they recorded that they couldn’t use in the movie.
  • I’m guessing a lot.
  • The sinister Jafar meets with a thief in the desert who has half of a golden scarab.
  • When Jafar joins the two halves, they open up a Cave of Wonders, but only one may enter.
  • “The Diamond in the Rough.”
  • Cut to Aladdin, who has stolen some bread and, in his escape from authorities, sings an upbeat song explaining exactly who he is as a character.
  • You know… he’s the good guy.
  • Sure he’s a thief, but he only steals because he’s hungry… so he’s a thief with a heart of gold?
  • Over at the palace, the Sultan of Agrabah hosts a suitor who seeks the hand of his daughter, Princess Jasmine.
  • She’s not having it.
  • Jasmine is tired of palace life and always being cooped up within those walls.
  • So she sneaks out in an effort to experience what life is like for everyone else.
  • Meanwhile, Jafar, the Sultan’s grand vizier, hypnotizes the Sultan into handing over a valuable heirloom that he can use to track down the “Diamond in the Rough,” leading him to Aladdin.
  • Because magic.
  • In the marketplace, the disguised Jasmine is saved by Aladdin when she unintentionally steals an apple for a hungry child.
  • They share a nice moment together, but are interrupted by guards, whom they each think are there for them.
  • Jasmine reveals herself as the princess to save Aladdin, but they take him anyway under orders from Jafar.
  • Uh… why does Jafar have more pull with the palace guards than the princess?
  • In the dungeon, Aladdin encounters an old man, who is actually Jafar in disguise.
  • He helps Aladdin escape and leads him to the Cave of Wonders, telling him that any treasure inside he can keep, but he must retrieve the lamp for him first.
  • Things are going all right in the cave at first.
  • Aladdin encounters a Magic Carpet that is apparently some kind of sentient lifeform.
  • Aladdin finds the lamp, but his monkey, Abu, falls into the temptation of touching the forbidden treasure, which they were warned by the mouth of the cave not to touch.
  • They make their escape as everything explodes around them, but are left hanging at the cave entrance.
  • Jafar refuses to pull Aladdin out until he hands over the lamp, and then he actually pulls out a dagger to kill the kid.
  • Abu saves the day by biting Jafar, but then he and Aladdin fall back into the cave as it closes back up, leaving them both trapped.
  • Jafar is ready to celebrate, thinking he has the lamp and no loose ends to tie up, but the lamp isn’t in his pocket.
  • Abu grabbed it before being thrown back into the cave.
  • And now the movie really begins.
  • Aladdin rubs the lamp and meets the incomparable Robin Williams Genie of the lamp.
  • Genie explains the rules of being master of the lamp…
  • Aladdin gets three wishes, but the Genie cannot kill anyone, cannot make anyone fall in love, and cannot raise the dead.
  • Then Aladdin tricks the Genie into getting them all out of the cave without using a wish.
  • Back at the palace, Iago, Jafar’s obnoxious talking parrot, suggests that Jafar manipulate the Sultan into letting him marry Jasmine.
  • Since he didn’t get the lamp, he can’t just wish his way to the throne.
  • Aladdin, free form the cave, isn’t sure what his first wish should be, so he asks the Genie for his opinion.
  • This is where the Genie reveals that he’s actually a slave to this gig, so his wish would be for freedom.
  • Aladdin promises to use his third wish to free the Genie.
  • And then he makes his first official to become a prince so that he’ll actually have a chance with Princess Jasmine.
  • After this, I have an issue with the way these wishes work.
  • Did they address this issue in the live-action remake?
  • I watched it… I just don’t remember and wasn’t impressed enough to care enough to watch it again.
  • But the issue comes when Jafar’s men try to drown Aladdin and the Genie says he there has to be an official wish for him to save him.
  • They’re underwater… Aladdin doesn’t make a wish.
  • This is his second wish anyway…
  • Then the Genie is pushing for Aladdin to go ahead and use his third wish to free him, but Aladdin feels like he can’t.
  • Because if he does, he won’t be a prince anymore.
  • Where’s the logic in that?
  • Aladdin made a wish, the Genie made it happen.
  • Aladdin is Prince Ali Ababwa.
  • But Aladdin is dealing with some serious confidence issues.
  • He thinks that if Jasmine knew who he really was, she wouldn’t want anything to do with him.
  • But everything we’ve seen so far, she’s more impressed with the street rat than she is with the prince.
  • Anyway, Jafar discovers Aladdin’s secret and sends Iago to steal the lamp.
  • At this point, Jafar wishes to become Sultan.
  • Then he wishes to become the world’s most powerful sorcerer, banishing Aladdin to, I assume, Siberia.
  • In a stroke of luck, the Magic Carpet got caught up in Aladdin’s banishment, so he’s got a quick ride back to Agrabah.
  • Once he gets back, he tricks Jafar into making his third wish: to become an all-powerful genie.
  • But this comes along with the slavery to a lamp.
  • Jafar didn’t see that coming.
  • Aladdin follows through with his promise to free Genie.
  • I still don’t understand why he’s not a prince anymore.
  • The wish was made, that should’ve been the end of it.
  • It’s not like Jafar wished to reverse Aladdin’s wish.
  • But the Sultan steps in and says he’ll change the law about Jasmine needing to marry a prince.
  • And they all live happily ever after.

A to Z Challenge - AThanks for tuning in to Day One of the 2020 A to Z Challenge! If you like Disney movies, then you’re likely to like where I’m going for the rest of the month. I’ll be doing a movie beginning with each letter of the alphabet each day (except Sundays) all month. And I’ll try to give hints about the next day’s movie in case you want to take a guess in the comments.

Clues for tomorrow’s movie are that it begins with a B and it’s a Disney movie. Just kidding… It’s animated, but it’s not one of Disney’s more popular animated features. In fact, it was kind of a box office failure. However, in my opinion, it is vastly underrated as a film and it’s a shame they never got around to exploring more of the series on which it was based. Any guesses?

16 thoughts on “A to Z Challenge – Aladdin

  1. No, nothing is better than Robin Williams as the Genie. I haven’t watched Aladdin since the 90s, but now that I have Disney+ I’m working my way through all the Disney animated feature, so I should be revisiting it in the near future.

    Have a great A to Z Challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I recently watched a documentary about Robin Williams and it said that he ended up hating Walt Disney after Aladdin. His only request in voicing Genie had to do with not capitalizing on his talents, but Disney did so anyway by making and selling millions of Genie-related toys and what not.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: A to Z Challenge – DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp | The Confusing Middle

  4. Pingback: A to Z Challenge 2020 – Reflection | The Confusing Middle

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