Road to Bali

Road to Bali. Paramount Pictures 1952.
Road to Bali. Paramount Pictures 1952.

Before watching the movie:

I feel I know so much and yet so little. I know that the “Road to” movies staring Crosby and Hope were a staple, and I’ve seen a few of the Family Guy “Road to” episodes starring Brian and Stewie, which are supposed to be homages. I wouldn’t be surprised if this series was the genesis of the “road movie” genre. It’s easy to guess that the plot will be light and servicing some fun antics, exotic scenery, and more singing than I’d necessarily want in a movie.

But beyond that, I’m not sure. I worry that the exotic locale might be treated in a way modern audiences might find embarrassing. I probably should have chosen the first movie in the series instead of the sixth out of seven, but this was what was available (and thanks to my grandparents for the loan of the set I found this in).

It’s June, summer is here, and it’s a time when it’s a bit more okay to have more fun than originality. I don’t think this movie could go too far wrong.

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Holiday Inn

Holiday Inn. Paramount Pictures 1942.
Holiday Inn. Paramount Pictures 1942.

Before watching the movie:

What can this film offer to audiences seventy years later? It appears to be a show made of a bunch of Christmas songs (which have since become old standards) woven together with the lightest touch of plot. I’m sure some of the songs haven’t passed into the zeitgeist, but I wonder if the performances can be enough to really make a variety show with a plot worthwhile.

Maybe I’m coming at this too negatively. It’s very likely a fun, light way to get into the holiday spirit. Art doesn’t have to be weighty or novel to be good, what matters is if it elicited the response the artist and the audience wanted. Anyway, we’re still talking about it almost three quarters of a century later, so it’s clearly not garbage.

The Holiday Season is here, folks. Try to take it slowly enough to still enjoy it when your holiday of choice is here.

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