You know here at JPFmovies we are never afraid to compare and contrast remakes of films or T.V. series (i.e. previously reviewed for example the original Battlestar Galactica with it remake). More often than not, we shred the remake, but who knows what we will find here.
National Lampoon’s Vacation, sometimes referred to as Vacation, is a 1983 American comedy film directed by the genius Harold Ramis and stars Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, Randy Quaid, Dana Barron, and Anthony Michael Hall. John Candy, Imogene Coca, Christie Brinkley and the screen play was written by John Hughes the 1980’s movie writer/director legend and apparently basically is a fictionalized account of his own family’s ill-fated trip to Disneyland when Hughes was young.
The movie follows an “all American” family in their trek to drive across country and visit Wally World. Well you can imagine what the comedy genius’s at National Lampoon could cook up with that story line. Additionally, I believe one of the reasons for the films lasting popularity is that everyone has experienced in one way or another some sort of “family” debacle giving it a timeless quality.
During the family’s travels, they run into numerous mishaps, such as being tagged by vandals in a rundown area of St. Louis, while Clark is tempted numerous times by a beautiful young woman (Christie Brinkley) driving a Magnum P.I. red Ferrari. One of the great scenes is when they stop to visit Ellen’s cousin Catherine (Miriam Flynn) and her husband Eddie (Randy Quaid), who makes “real tomato catsup” and grills hamburger helper without the hamburger. I loved that scene so much you’ll see it is one of the clips.
Also the movie’s theme song “Holiday Road” was performed by Fleetwood Mac legend Linsey Buckingham—that is why another one of the clips is of the opening credits to give Buckingham his due.
The film really is the peak of the National Lampoon movement and with its all-star cast it was destined for greatness. How then is someone supposed to remake the film? That is one tough act to follow. So next up we will look the 2015 remake and see how it compares with the original.