National Lampoon’s Vacation

EVERY SUMMER CHEVY CHASE TAKES HIS FAMILY ON A LITTLE TRIP. THIS YEAR HE WENT TOO FAR.

vacationThe Griswolds leave Chicago for a road trip to the West Coast and Walley World, a popular theme park, but their journey quickly descends into chaos. One of Chevy Chase’s most popular (and funniest) comedies is not for families; it has moments that are either raunchy or just outrageous in other ways and these playful flirts with tastelessness would resurface throughout the franchise. Some of the jokes are misses, but most of them work and they’re made even better thanks to Chase’s hilarious performance as the enthusiastic but slightly nutty patriarch. Beverly D’Angelo provides perfect counter-balance as his wife.

1983-U.S. 98 min. Color. Produced by Matty Simmons. Directed by Harold Ramis. Screenplay: John Hughes. Cast: Chevy Chase (Clark Griswold), Beverly D’Angelo (Ellen Griswold), Anthony Michael Hall (Russell Griswold), Imogene Coca, Randy Quaid, Dana Barron… Christie Brinkley, John Candy, Eugene Levy.

Trivia: Followed by three sequels, starting with National Lampoon’s European Vacation (1985); the franchise was rebooted as Vacation (2015).

Quote: “This is no longer a vacation. It’s a quest. It’s a quest for fun. I’m gonna have fun and you’re gonna have fun. We’re all gonna have so much fucking fun we’ll need plastic surgery to remove our goddamn smiles. You’ll be whistling ‘Zip-A-Dee Doo-Dah’ out of your assholes!” (Chase to his family)

Last word: “For me it was always laughter and listening going, ‘Oh my goodness, did [he] just said that?’ … Always a really good time. It was classic, but it was also a family experience for me because we were all on vacation together, literally. So, it became its own film within its film.” (Barron, Mstar News)

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