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National Lampoon's European Vacation
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22 out of 30 people found the following review useful:

I wondered whatever happened to Jack? :D

Author: Kristine ( from Chicago, Illinois
19 September 2005

OK, was this the best Vacation sequel? No, not really. But it still had a great amount of a laughter. I can't believe that some people really didn't like this film. Don't you have moments where you just want to sit down and laugh? Don't think, just laugh and have a good time with the film? The Griswalds are back and they are in Europe! They have won an excellent trip to London, Paris, Germany(they don't state where), and Rome. Of course they do manage to get into trouble, otherwise it wouldn't be a comedy. Clark still has the "father-knows-best" policy and becomes more obsessed with having a good time with the family than listening to them and their ideas. Ellen has become a famous naked model in Europe because of some undeleted footage that was stolen from Clark on his camera. Rusty is opting for a lot of booty in Europe and Audrey just won't shut up about a not all that boyfriend, Jack.

This movie has non-stop laughter that you have to admit is catchy. They did recycle some jokes from the first, but I think you need to let go and have some fun. This was an enjoyable film.


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21 out of 30 people found the following review useful:


Author: Tim Davison ( from Manchester, England
3 September 2002

I'm surprised by all the negative comments - this was the first National Lampoon movie I saw, so I came to it fresh. OK, so it's not a great work of art, but I thought it was side-splittingly funny in places, and cleverly parodies all the national stereotypes that people tend to use.

As a great fan of visual humour, my favourite moment in the film has to be the scene where, having had all their clothes stolen, the family go shopping in a boutique in Italy and emerge on to the street dressed in absurdly over-the-top designer creations. It really is one of the funniest sights I have ever seen in a film. I defy anyone with a sense of humour not to laugh.

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15 out of 22 people found the following review useful:

Not a vacation to remember

Author: Shawn Watson from The Penumbra
14 February 2011

The Griswold's (mis-spelled here as Griswald) European Tour is far inferior to their cross-country trek to Walley World. First time around Clark had a goal, a destination, and pay-off for the audience when he finally got there. Second time around he's just wandering aimlessly from country to country, and it doesn't make for great entertainment I'm afraid.

The Griswold's win the grand prize in a humiliating TV show called 'Pig in a Poke' and are sent to England, France, Germany, and Italy on an all expenses paid trip. The bulk of the humor is a scatter-shot approach to comedy that abuses tired clichés and cultural stereotypes for quick, easy, cheap laughs.

Director Amy Heckerling may have used the first Vacation as a reference, but she doesn't have the control over the film that Harold Ramis did, and frequently allows the actors to ad-lib with the assumption that whatever they do might be funny. Even comedy actors need direction, and Heckerling's poor effort ruins many scenes that had potential. Even her camera placing and angles seem awkward and unbalanced. The grainy, low-key photography is also completely inappropriate for a film featuring such a wide range of scenery. Her use of stock footage is bad too (a shot of the Statue of Liberty shows no Twin Towers of the WTC, which were built in 1972!), and heightens the slapdash nature of the production. A few scenes seem to be edited out of order too, which leads me to believe that the script flowed a little differently before being rewritten (Clark leaves the London hotel, moves literally five feet down the street, then asks for directions back to the hotel).

John Hughes' influence on the script was obviously minimum. Vacation and Christmas Vacation were ficionalised accounts of his own family's experiences. But European Vacation feels like a quick cash-in on the original's success, and co-writer Robert Klane doesn't know how to inject the pathos and satire that was so easy for Hughes.

The European trip is definitely lagging far behind Walley World, Christmas and Las Vegas. A better director and a tighter script would have saved it. But Chase is as watchable as ever, and the only reason to sit through this poorly-made drivel.

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24 out of 40 people found the following review useful:

Good sequel, worth watching.

Author: LebowskiT1000 from Escondido, California, USA
8 October 2003

I had always thought that "European Vacation" was much funnier than the original "Vacation", until just recently. I watched both films back-to-back and in the end I've got to concede that I like the original "Vacation" more than it's sequel. I think the two films are equally funny, but the first one has a little more originality to it and a slightly better cast. Don't get me wrong though, "European Vacation" IS a funny movie and a very good sequel, but just not as good as the original.

Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo of course, play the parts of Clarke and Ellen Griswold (although spelled "Griswald" in this film for whatever reason) perfectly. The parts of Rusty and Audrey Griswold were re-cast (for whatever reason) with Jason Lively and Dana Hill. I thought Jason Lively was a fine replacement for Anthony Michael Hall, and even slightly resembles him. Although, I was less than impressed with Dana Hill. Not that she did a bad job acting, but more that her character seemed quite different and didn't resemble the original Audrey (Dana Barron) at all. It was nice to see both Eric Idle and Robbie Coltrane in the film (both playing very small roles).

"European Vacation" was a good film and a nice sequel, but still not as good as the original. Although, I would strongly recommend you take a look at this film if you liked the original or just like Chevy/Beverly. Chevy Chase is great, as is Beverly D'Angelo, both make the film well worth the time I put in watching it and I hope they'll make your time worth it as well. Thanks for reading,


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36 out of 66 people found the following review useful:

Is this movie bad? NO WAY

Author: John E. Lee, Jr. ( from Houston, TX
5 January 1999

I don't understand why people don't like this movie so much. Chevy Chase is there, Beverly D'Angelo is there, Eric Idle is there which is great. Sure, I'd rather see Anthony Michael Hall rather than Jason Lively, but even that's alright, Lively does a decent job. I don't care if people hate this movie, I'm sticking by my beliefs, and I say this movie is great.

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12 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

An enjoyable fun-movie

Author: Ray Massart from Belgium
23 October 2003

I have seen this movie many times and although it is nearly 20 years old, it still makes me laugh.Europe as experienced by an American family is very funny and even people who are offended by the so-called lack of respect towards the old continent, should agree that the typical characteristics of the English, French, Germans and Austrians are true to life, although admittedly slightly exaggerated.It's an unpretentious movie which aims at offering a better form of slapstick. Chevy Chase with his mixture of good intentions and bewilderment is always hilarious. One good piece of advice: NEVER go to Austria and watch the guys doing those typical male dances in their short leather pants.After having seen this movie, you will be subjected to hysterical laughter!

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9 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Not as good as the first, not as bad as they say...

Author: Peach-2 from Netherlands
7 January 1999

Although it's not as good as the first film, this sequel isn't as terrible as I've heard people say. There are some very funny moments and this is Chevy Chase's best screen role. The only thing that's ever really bothered me about the Vacation films is that the Griswold's children are always played by different actors. Maybe I'm being picky, but I like continuity once in a while. There is a nice cameo from Eric Idle that was very funny and I liked the spoof of The Sound Of Music. Worth a watch.

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8 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

pretty good

Author: steve layne
5 August 1999

even though it's not as good as the first,and 3rd it's still pretty good. it's also a bit better than the 4th one. there are some laughs in this movie,and it's entertaining. after this one the series started not to make sense. even though the 3rd vacation is better it has the kids younger,which makes no sense. all in all european vacation is not as bad as people say. i give this movie **1/2 out of ****

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Not as Good as the first Vacation,but Still a Ton of Fun,

Author: Dillon Harris from Ireland
20 May 2014

European Vacation is a good movie with a well developed storyline a good comedic cast.I was certainly disappointed by this movie,because after seeing the first one,I thought seeing the Griswolds going to Europe would just be even more fun,but it wasn't,but this movie still is filled with some very funny scenes.Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo are still in good form in this movie,and they are certainly the highlight,they are filled with positive energy and there is great chemistry between the two of them.I found Audrey,who is played by a different actor than she was in the first,was extremely annoying and certainly the worst part,she didn't make me laugh once.European Vacation is certainly disappointing,but fans of the first should still definitely enjoy.

After entering a game show,the Griswolds win a trip to Europe,but while they're there one problem after another comes along.

Best Performance: Chevy Chase Worst Performance: Dana Hill

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7 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

European Vacation: 6/10

Author: movieguy1021 ( from Anywhere, USA
7 February 2003

`Pig in a Poke' is the newest game show in the US. Families dress up in pig costumes and answer questions. At the end, they can be pigs and win a great prize. And who's starring on it? Why, none other than our favorite family the Griswalds (spelled differently in this one than the others)! After a close competition with resident champions the Froegers, they win a European vacation. Audrey (Dana Hill) doesn't want to leave behind her boyfriend Jack (William Zabka), and Rusty (Jason Lively) just doesn't want to go. They do, reluctantly, but this two week vacation doesn't go without a hitch.

2nd released in the series, and usually considered least of the series, which I go with. Simply, it's not as funny as the others: Vacation, Christmas Vacation, and Vegas Vacation. It tries to be more raucous and irreverent than the others. It doesn't have a central grasp on any one plot. They go across Europe, but there's nothing that connects all of the destinations. For instance, in Vacation there was Aunt Edna; Christmas Vacation, it actually had a real plot, and in Vegas Vacation there were a few subplots, but they all went through.

All that isn't to say that it wasn't funny, it's just not as funny as the other three. As heard from Chevy Chase on the subpar DVD commentary, he wishes to do another Vacation movie. I would like to see that. Many of the laughs came from slapstick and pratfalls, which aren't my favorite types of humor. Some of them were predictable (they go to Stonehenge…guess what?), but some of the gags (like on the train to Rome) were nice.

The MPAA wrongly gave this movie its PG-13 rating. It most definitely should have been rated R. The writers, which include veteran John Hughes, must have tried to keep the humor in the PG-13 range, because they didn't `rough it up' as much as they wanted to.

One last thought: if there was an earlier movie version of Chicago, Beverly D'Angelo would have been perfect as Roxie.

My rating: 6/10

Rated PG-13 for sustained scenes of nudity, sexual situations, teen drinking and language.

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