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Road movie


Road movie

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In general, road movies are a cinematic genre in which the action takes places during a road journey. Notable examples include Easy Rider, Transamerica, Thelma and Louise and Y tu mamá también. Although the modern road movie inevitably takes place on the road, the genre has its roots in earlier tales of epic journeys, such as Homer's Odyssey and Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness.

Like their antecedents, the road movie tends towards an episodic structure. In each episode, there is a challenge to be met, although not all of them will be met successfully. In most episodes, a piece of the plot is revealed - knowledge or allies are gained, and so on. Sometimes, as Heart of Darkness, this progress is inverted, and each episode represents a loss rather than a gain.

Road movies traditionally end in one of four ways:

  • having met with triumph at their ultimate destination, the protagonist/s return home, wiser for their experiences.
  • at the end of the journey, the protagonist/s find a new home at their destination.
  • the journey continues endlessly. In such cases, the last shot of the film is almost always the driver's point of view of a lonely highway at night.
  • having realised that, as a result of their journey, they can never go home, the protagonists either choose death or are killed.


References to the genre include a comment by Wyatt in the Easy Rider, who complains that his life is like being in a road movie, the song "Road Movie to Berlin", by They Might Be Giants, and in the Family Guy episodes "Road to Rhode Island" and "Road to Europe," each of which grafted large portions of the film series onto the show.

The Road movies are also a series of seven classic comedy motion pictures starring Bing Crosby, Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour. Each of them has the name Road To...:

Road to Singapore (1940).
Road to Zanzibar (1941).
Road to Morocco (1942).
Road to Utopia (1946).
Road to Rio (1948).
Road to Bali (1952).
Road to Hong Kong (1962).



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Movies, v. 2.0, by MultiMedia

This guide is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.

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