(1947)3Craig ButlerThe fifth in the "Road" series, Road to Rio is a bit more uneven than its predecessors, and a bit less zany in its humor. When Rio's humor misses its mark, it misses it by a wider margin than the earlier films -- but when it hits, it scores way up high on the laugh meter. As an excuse for anything other than gags and songs, the screenplay is fairly useless, but with Bing Crosby, Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour around to knock the gags and songs out of the ballpark, who cares? The star trio gets an able assist in the humor department from the strange Wiere Brothers and delightful singing support from the Andrews Sisters, and Gale Sondergaard is on hand to supply a dangerously sinister touch to the plot. Comedic highlights include Hope in drag, Hope on a high wire and the Wieres making use of their precious little English. Crosby is in golden voice on the haunting "But Beautiful and his duet with the Andrews Sisters on the rhythmic "You Don't Have to Know the Language" is a gem. For her part, Lamour makes something special out of "Experience." Norman Z. McLeod's direction is fast and pointed, exactly what Rio requires. If Rio occasionally falls flat, its highs are more than enough to make it an entertaining little romp.