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National Lampoon's Vacation (1983)

The Griswold family's cross-country drive to the Walley World theme park proves to be much more arduous than they ever anticipated.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (short story "Vacation '58")
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Cast

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Storyline

The Griswold family are on a quest. A quest to a Walley World theme park for a family vacation, but things aren't going to go exactly as planned, especially when Clark Griswold is losing all thought towards a mysterious blonde in a red Ferrari. Written by FilmFanUK

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Every summer Chevy Chase takes his family on a little trip. This year he went too far.

Genres:

Adventure | Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 July 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

National Lampoon's Vacation  »

Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$61,400,000 (USA)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The roller coasters featured at the end of the film are the Revolution and Colossus at Six Flags Magic Mountain. Revolution, the first modern coaster to feature a vertical loop, still operates, whilst Collossus closed in 2014 and was rebuilt with steel track and an altered layout, including two inversions, in 2015 as Twisted Colossus. See more »

Goofs

After the "shower scare" scene, Ellen comes out of the bathroom wearing an unbuttoned pajama top (which she appears to only try to button the top button as she brushes her hair), but in the next shot when she crawls into bed, her pajama top is fully buttoned down. See more »

Quotes

Cousin Vicki: I'm going steady, and I French kiss.
Audrey Griswold: So? Everybody does that.
Cousin Vicki: Yeah, but Daddy says I'm the best at it.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the credits, you see snapshots of group photos of where and who the Griswalds met on the vacation. The last photo shows you how they got home, on a plane. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Supernatural: Remember the Titans (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm So Excited
Written by Anita Pointer, June Pointer, Ruth Pointer and Trevor Lawrence
Performed by The Pointer Sisters
Produced by Richard Perry
Courtesy of Planet Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
'Excuse me, I'm looking for directions back to the expressway'
19 February 2011 | by (The Penumbra) – See all my reviews

Clark Griswold ignores his family's pleas to go to Hawaii for their summer vacation and opts for the Walley World resort in California instead. His long-suffering wife Ellen wants to fly, but Clark would rather drive and spend time with the kids he hardly ever sees.

Sounds like a simple journey from A to B right? Wrong! The Griswolds are a gene pool of absolute disaster and nothing...NOTHING goes right...ever. The fun begins with Clark being forced to accept a disgusting metallic pea-green family truckster instead of a cool-blue sports model with CB and optional fun pack. It's literally the most hideous car in the history of automobiles (and that includes the car that Homer Simpson made for his brother Herb).

As the lengthy days on the road pass, Clark is ripped-off by street hustlers, guilt-tripped out of $500 from his hick cousin Eddie (Randy Quaid in what is, begrudgingly, his most popular role), ripped-off by a hick sheriff/mechanic, and tempted by gorgeous blonde in a Ferrari. Though Ellen doesn't take kindly to anyone with an eye on her Sparky (actually D'Angelo's pet name for Chevy Chase and not something that was scripted).

Based on John Hughes' ill-fated trip to Disneyworld when he was five-years-old, Vacation brought us Chevy Chase's most famous character (sorry Fletch) and most successful series. He has absolutely perfect chemistry with Beverly D'Angelo, who, with her large eyeballs and perfect timing, is an under-rated comic actress in her own right.

While I absolutely love the first and third movies in the Vacation series, and both definitely score 10/10, I have to say the original is the best as it has a really dark edge that none of the others have. There's virtually nothing in Vacation that isn't funny. Harold Ramis, fresh off the absolute anarchy of Caddyshack, keeps a tight, sadistic reign on the disastrous road trip. If you have a dark sense of humor and enjoy evil comedy then you'll love Vacation. It was one of the first movies I ever saw and it helped turn me into the misanthropic, dysfunctional, ghoulish misfit that I am today.

Thank you, Vacation! Thank you!


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