The film begins with our leading hero, Sinbad. Sinbad is the captain on a long voyage along with his crew. Currently Sinbad and his men are presently lost at sea due to many stormy winds which pushed their ship in a completely different direction. All the crew are tired and hungry. Thankfully, Sinbad soon discovers an island and decides to anchor near its shores so that his men can find food and rest up. But Sinbad’s problems don’t stop with this landing. Instead, Sinbad encounters a man running away from a one-eyed monster! The man that’s running away has stolen a magical lamp- something the creature is not pleased about.
Sinbad and the crew manage to escape the island along with the new stranger whose life they just saved. But when they return home, Sinbad learns that the true intentions of the stranger are to force Sinbad and his crew to return to the island. Sinbad has no choice and agrees to face his most dangerous adventure yet, discovering many new creatures unlike anything he’s encountered before.
As a plot, this is simply a fun adventure film. I enjoyed the movie’s opening as we see the current situation our leading hero is in. Performances for the most part are pleasing, particularly from the top hero himself. But the most significant praise for the film is the topic of special effects.
Considering this was made in 1958, I was genuinely stunned at the film’s creativeness when it comes to the visuals, such as the use of stop motion. The creatures/monsters are fun to see, and as an older film, I found myself questioning how specific effects were done for this film. The praise for such work naturally goes to Ray Harryhausen who later would work on many other films using this same type of talent and creativity.
Overall, those seeking a classic adventure involving monsters, magic, and a mysterious island will undoubtedly enjoy this movie. It is a classic film which I found it extremely enjoyable, mainly when it came to the use of practical effects, for which full credit goes to the legendary Ray Harryhausen.
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Review Written by Peter Walkden