Road to Utopia

Road to Utopia

Director: Hal Walker Cast: Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour

DVD (Black & White / Dolby 5.1 / Mono)

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Overview

Hal Walker's Road To Utopia, shot in 1944 but released in 1946, had previously appeared on DVD from Image Entertainment, in an edition lacking any extras or, for that matter, the benefits of a state-of-the-art transfer. The 2002 reissue directly from Universal is a significant improvement, with enough built-in whistles and bells to keep viewers busy with a lot more than the movie. As to the feature itself, it's presented in a crisp new transfer from a very clean and sharp print -- all so sharp that the black cloth on which the game "Ghosto" is named is held up, it shines, and even its texture is visible in a wide shot. There's an audio track to match, sharp and loud, which is a help not only when Bing Crosby sings but when he and Bob Hope do their song-and-dance number, "The Lonesomest Man In Town." The 18 chapters are adequate to the job of delineating the plot, such as it is, but there's a lot more than the movie here to enjoy. In addition to the documentary "Bob Hope & The Road To Success," which appears on each of the four Universal-released discs of the "Road" movies, we get a superb morale-boosting short entitled "Hollywood Victory Caravan." This is one of the best featurettes of its kind that this reviewer has ever seen -- in addition to Hope and Crosby (who have a lot of fun here), we get Barbara Stanwyck, Alan Ladd, Betty Hutton (in a full-blown production number almost worthy of Busby Berkeley), William Demarest, Franklin Pangborn, and Humphrey Bogart (stepping out of character in a patriotic speech that is perfectly placed and very moving in its passion and sincerity), all in worthwhile scenes of varying lengths. There are also bios on the key supporting players and the director, and an original trailer, all of these extras accessible through an easy-to-manipulate multi-layered menu that opens automatically on start-up. For those with the need to use them, captions and subtitles can be activated in English, French, and Spanish.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/05/2002
UPC: 0025192123023
Original Release: 1945
Rating: NR
Source: Universal Studios
Region Code: 1
Presentation: [B&W]
Sound: [Dolby Digital, monaural]
Time: 1:30:00
Sales rank: 13,799

Special Features

Bob Hope and the Road to Success; Hollywood Victory Caravan; Photograph gallery; Theatrical trailer; Production notes; Cast and filmmakers; DVD-ROM features

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Bing Crosby Duke Johnson
Bob Hope Chester Hooton
Dorothy Lamour Sal Van Hoyden
Robert Benchley Narrator
Hillary Brooke Kate
Douglas Dumbrille Ace Larson
Jack LaRue Le Bec
Nestor Paiva McGurk
James Lono Eskimo
George McKay Waiter
Art Foster Husky Sailor
Robert H. Barrat Sperry
George Anderson Townsman
Stanley Andrews Official at boat
Bobby Barber Bartender
William Benedict Newsboy
Al Bridge Boat captain
Romaine Callender Top Hat
Larry Daniels Ringleader
Edgar Dearing Official
Jimmie Dundee Ringleader of henchmen
Edward Emerson Master of Ceremonies
Al Ferguson Policeman
Maxine Fife Girl
Donald Gallagher Man at Zambini's
Charles Gemora Bear
Brandon Hurst Man at Zambini's
Claire James Girl
Ethan Laidlaw Saloon extra
Arthur Loft Purser
Frank Moran Bartender
Ferdinand Munier Santa Claus
Paul Newlan Tough ship's purser
Allen Pomeroy Henchman
Jack Rutherford Man
Lee Shumway Cop
Jack Stoney Henchman
Jim Thorpe Passenger
Pat West Bartender
Will Wright Mr. Latimer
Ronnie Rondell Hotel Manager
Charles Wilson Official Cop

Technical Credits
Hal Walker Director
Roland Anderson Art Director
Johnny Burke Score Composer,Songwriter
Daniel Dare Choreography
Robert Emmett Dolan Musical Direction/Supervision
Hans Dreier Art Director
Farciot Edouart Special Effects
Jerry Fairbanks Animator
Melvin Frank Screenwriter
Stuart Gilmore Editor
Leigh Harline Score Composer
Edith Head Costumes/Costume Designer
Paul Jones Producer
Lionel Lindon Cinematographer
Norman Panama Screenwriter
George Sawley Set Decoration/Design
James VanHeusen Score Composer,Songwriter

Scene Index

Side #1 --
0. Scenes
1. Main Titles [:22]
2. Old Friends [1:56]
3. Flashback [3:20]
4. Ghost-O [1:41]
5. Dockside [8:01]
6. The Map [1:38]
7. The Golden Rail [9:04]
8. Sperry [3:43]
9. McGurk [4:45]
10. Double Date [4:47]
11. Women and Fishin' [3:22]
12. Night Action [2:08]
13. The Morning After [2:11]
14. Above It All [2:29]
15. Mistakes Happen [6:16]
16. The Perils of Sal [5:48]
17. Dogsled Racing [2:05]
18. Back to the Present [5:58]

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