Road to Utopia
d.Hal Walker / 1946 / USA / 90 mins
Viewed at: A3.03 @ UEA (Norwich, UK)
The fourth of seven Road to… features that star the unlikely (and oddly endearing) partnership of Bing Crosby and Bob Hope, Road to Utopia is pure intertextual magnificence! I mean, it has a talking fish and a talking bear, plus loads of in-jokes about the filmic apparatus (editing, music, script, action etc) and plenty of jibes at the respective careers of Messrs. Crosby and Hope. Sure it’s cheesy, but it’s a darn tootin’ hoot all the same!
That said, amongst all the irony and parody of the Road to… cycle, surely the highest irony came during plans for an eighth film in the series, halted when Bing Crosby died of a heart attack in 1977. It’s title? Why, Road to the Fountain of Youth of course! Oh, Bing, always with the jokes!