Happy Road: Gene Kelly Directs and Stars in this Bizarre, Slightly Entertaining Comedy

As directed by Gene Kelly, who also stars, The Happy Road is an original but ultimately not very funny or effective French-American road comedy about two children (a boy and girl), who escape from their Swiss private school aiming for Paris.

In addition to Kelly, the international cast of this semi-whimsical black-and white movie, made on a small budget, includes Barbara Laage, Michael Redgrave, and Bobby Clark.

Making over the top observations about the peculiarities of national cultures–French vs. British vs. American, the film works too hard, and after a while, the endless arguments between Kelly and Laage become tiresome.

The plots goes back and forth between the duo of children and the mature couple, drawing similarities and differences between the two bonds, while using both French and English.

Kelly is Danny’s widowed father and Laage is Janine’s divorced mom, about to get married in Monte Carlo. No need to ask whether she is going to get married?

Among the whimsical sequences is a trip to Paris by Kelly and Laage on a scooter that breaks down in the middle of nowhere.

Light on his feet, without dancing or singing this time around, Kelly delivers a charming performance that makes the film more enjoyable–up to a point.

Dividing critics, this bizarre film (a truly curio item) was a commercial flop.


Mike Andrews–Gene Kelly

Suzanne Duval–Barbara Laage

Danny Andrews–Bobby Clark

Janine Duval–Brigitte Fossey

General Medworth–Michael Redgrave

Doctor Salaise–Roger Treville

Hélène–Colette Dereal

Madame Fallière- – Maryse Martin

Motorcycle Officer – Van Doude

Armbruster – Colin Mann