Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Road to Utopia

Our Old Movie Night this month featured the Bing Crosby/Bob Hope classic, Road to Utopia. I'd never seen one of these famous "road" pictures before and I was certain it would be a smash. It did not disappoint.

I'll be frank, I have no idea what the plot of this movie was. I know Bob and Bing were traveling to Alaska and running away from some big tough guys looking for gold. But the plot is not the point of this movie. The point is, Bob and Bing do weird things and they're funny. And they chase women. And they make dirty jokes that are so insinuated, I'm not sure they were even really there.

The movie makes fun on itself. Right off the bat in the first scene we see a fellow in a classroom explaining that he will be making appearances throughout the movie just to explain to us what the heck is going on. Sure enough, throughout the film his head pops up in the corner of the screen, he makes some snide remark, and disappears. I got the feeling that when the writers were sitting down to work on this movie, they wrote out hundreds of their favorite jokes and then built a movie around them, hoping it would start making sense along the way. Well, it doesn't make sense, but that doesn't matter because it's funny.

Bing Crosby is possibly the corniest man alive (or..not...alive). But isn't that why we love him? I've seen White Christmas more times than I care to say, and I think it's pretty obvious that the corniest jokes in that movie are the ones he ad libbed. I can only assume the same is true for this picture. And that's why we love Bing.

It was a great success and luckily, the DVD that this movie is on also has 3 other road pictures on it! It seems I have my work cut out for me.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If I remember correctly, that "guy" who appears occasionally throughout "Road to Utopia" was Robert Benchley, a well-known humorist of the day. The song, "Personality" was sung by Dorothy Lamour; I thought it was worthy of at least an award nomination, but, alas, it wasn't. Jimmy Van Heusen might have been nominated for another song in that film, but I am not certain of that. It was one of the better Road pictures, IMO.