Road to Singapore (1940) - Rotten Tomatoes

Road to Singapore (1940)

Road to Singapore (1940)

Road to Singapore




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Road to Singapore Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

The story goes that such stars as Fred MacMurray, Jack Oakie and Burns & Allen had turned down The Road to Singapore before the leading roles went to Bing Crosby and Bob Hope. More conventionally structured than future "Road" efforts, the film casts Crosby as Josh Mallon, the irresponsible son of shipping magnate Joshua Mallon IV (Charles Coburn). Though the elder Mallon wants his son to enter the family business and marry longtime fiancee Gloria Wycott (Judith Barrett), Josh would rather pal around with his carefree sailor buddy Ace Lannigan (Bob Hope). On the eve of his wedding, Josh escapes with Ace to Singapore, where the two of them cook up a get-rich-quick scheme involving a highly unreliable spot remover. The boys' friendship is strained when they both fall in love with cabaret dancer Mima (Dorothy Lamour), who is on the lam from her jealous partner Caesar (Anthony Quinn). Hiding out from the authorities, the three protagonists wind up in the midst of a native ceremony, where Ace and Mima rescue Josh from a hasty marriage to a local temptress. When Gloria shows up to drag Josh back to the altar, Mima nobly gives him up, pretending to be in love with Ace. Eventually, however, big-hearted Ace realizes that Mima belongs with Josh, and thus concocts another scheme to lure his pal back to the Far East. Though many of the earmarks of the "Road" series are evident in Road to Singapore (the "patty-cake" bit, the presence of such guest stars as Hope's radio stooge Jerry Colonna, etc.), the film lacks the spontaneous quality of the later Hope-Crosby-Lamour starrers. Even so, it's an awful lot of fun, especially when Bob and Bing team up on the novelty number "Captain Custard" and Dorothy croons her requisite "moon and stars" romantic ballads.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Classics, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Don Hartman, Frank R. Butler, Frank Butler
In Theaters:
On DVD: Mar 5, 2002
Universal Pictures


Bing Crosby
as Joshua 'Josh' Mallon...
Bob Hope
as Ace Lannigan
Charles Coburn
as Joshua Mallon IV
Judith Barrett
as Gloria Wycott
Jerry Colonna
as Achilles Bombanassa
Johnny Arthur
as Timothy Willow
Pierre Watkin
as Morgan Wycott
Miles Mander
as Sir Malcolm Drake
John Kelly
as Sailor
Kitty Kelly
as Sailor's wife
Roger Gray
as Father
Richard Keene
as Cameraman
Gloria Franklin
as Ninky Poo
Carmen D'Antonio
as Dancing Girl
Monte Blue
as High Priest
Cyril Ring
as Ship's officer
Helen Lynd
as Society girl
Paula DeCardo
as Native Dancing Girl
Benny Inocencio
as Native Boy
Jack Pepper
as Columnist
Arthur Q. Bryan
as Bartender
Robert Emmett O'Conn...
as Immigration Officer
Belle Mitchell
as Shopkeeper
Fred Malatesta
as Native Policeman
Robert St. Angelo
as Native Policeman
Marguerita Padula
as Proprietress
Bobby Barber
as Dumb-Looking Little ...
Robert E. O'Connor
as Immigration Officer
Claire James
as Girl at Party
Grace Hayle
as Chaperone
Richard Tucker
as Ship's Officer
Elvia Allman
as Homely Girl
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Road to Singapore

Critic Reviews for Road to Singapore

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (1)

Full Review… | March 25, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

The Road picture that started it all isn't the funniest, but Hope and Crosby are still fun to watch.

October 30, 2004

The first 'Road' picture has its undeniable charms, but isn't as wild as the later entries.

January 8, 2003
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Hope and Crosby still a bit rough around the edges.

August 12, 2002
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)

July 1, 2005

September 2, 2004
Los Angeles CityBeat

Audience Reviews for Road to Singapore


The first "Road" movie is enjoyable and fun for the most part, but there are some bumps on this road trip. The sequels offer more of the same, but some are funnier than others, and most are funnier than this one.

Aj V

Super Reviewer


Sea faring buddies Hope and Crosby dodge marriage vows and set up house together on a remote island paradise, until beautiful gypsy girl Dorothy Lamour appears and upsets their domestic bliss. This is one of those old style Hollywood films that seems hilariously naive by today's standards. A pair of men who don't want to get married to glamorous women so they decide to live (and sleep!) together...okaaaay then! This was the first of their collaborations and so the formula hasn't quite found its feet; Hope is more of a sidekick to main man Crosby (even appearing below Dorothy Lamour on the credits) and so the screwball banter of their later outings is sorely missing. In fact there are far more songs than jokes so it can be seen more as a romantic musical than a straight comedy. There's not much in the way of plot either, but if you're in the mood for old school, undemanding fluff decorated with some 40s Hollywood glamour (involving some lovely costumes by Edith Head) and a few chuckles, this adequately fits the bill.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer


It would be hard not to like this "Road" film. Anything Bing Crosby and Bob Hope make together is worth watching. Very entertaining and filled with a lot of inside jokes. Great fun.

James Higgins

Road to Singapore Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Road to Singapore on our Movie forum!