The Thief of Bagdad (1924) is a fantastical romantic adventure that Douglas Fairbanks said was his favorite movie that he ever made. Douglas plays the title character, and watching him on the big screen recently at Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo it was easy to see why he had Mary Pickford and every woman in America swooning over him. Even though the film is 90 (!!!) years old, there are some timeless lessons in it for men who would like to dazzle like Douggy F.
1. Show off your assets. Work out, wax your chest, tan, and then never wear a shirt again. But if you have to, make sure it is skintight and has a deep v neck. Favor billowy, pajama-style pants that show off the muscles in your legs when you are in silhouette. Smile a lot, to show off your white teeth. Sport a pencil-thin mustache, gold hoop earrings and the occasional pearl necklace, and work your collection of headscarves.
2. Do your own stunts, like climbing magic ropes, jumping from windows, fighting off spidery creatures at the bottom of the sea, and riding a winged horse. You might also try a handstand as you shake golden coins from your hair and pockets. Be shirtless when u do this. (see Tip 1)
3. Have a wingman. Choose someone who is not as handsome or charming as you, and who is grateful to be your pal, so that he will do things like assist you in "borrowing" clothes from merchants so that you can present yourself as a prince, help you capture a city, and ride beside you on a donkey. He could also disguise a bush as you so you can sneak away to woo a princess.
4. Honor your lady's beliefs. If she believes that her true love will touch a certain rose bush, then don't just put a hand on it--get thrown off your horse and actually land in the middle of it.
5. Wow your sweetie with your honesty. Gaze soulfully at her and tell her that you are a thief, but at the moment when you held her in your arms, "the evil in me died." And then when she practically passes out from the sheer romance of it all and how manly you are...
Bonus tip: Always leave her wanting more. Kiss her hand, and then kiss it again. And before you leave, touch the hem of her dress.
And if all else fails...use an invisible cloak to get your love away from her controlling family , and then take her for a ride on your magic carpet.
The 1924 version of The Thief of Bagdad is available on DVD and Blu-Ray; I (lara) found it at www.Amazon.com. And for a schedule of upcoming classic films at Old Town Music Hall, check out www.OldTownMusicHall.org.