Adhering religiously to the formula that made megabucks on The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast, this 1992 cartoon Disney feature, directed by John Musker and Ron Clements from a script they wrote with Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio, can probably be plumbed for ideological notations on nuclear power in the Middle East and other aspects of the New World Order (I’m inclined to take a parrot named Iago, dubbed by Gilbert Gottfried, as a stand-in for Israel), but it’s also a fairly straightforward fairy tale about an American-looking street urchin who marries into wealth with the help of a genie not only dubbed by but conspicuously patterned after Robin Williams. The animation seeks to dazzle, but with a self-consciousness that’s relatively new to the Disney studio. The results are fun and fast moving, but far from sublime. (JR)

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