6.6/10
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83 user 18 critic

The Great Outdoors (1988)

PG | | Comedy | 17 June 1988 (USA)
A Chicago man's hope for a peaceful family vacation in the woods is shattered when the annoying in-laws drop in.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Hilary Gordon ...
Rebecca Gordon ...
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Zoaunne LeRoy ...
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John Bloom ...
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Britt Leach ...
Reg
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Storyline

Big-hearted Chicago family man Chet has brought his family to a lakeside resort area, and although his wife and kids aren't quite as excited as he is, Chet has high hopes for the vacation. However, his optimism is sabotaged when his obnoxious brother-in-law Roman drops in unexpectedly, along with his snooty, strange family. Chet and his family try to stay open-minded, but they find it difficult to relax and enjoy themselves because of the constant annoyance of Roman's presence. Written by William Agee <wa0521@broncho.ucok.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Raccoons: Furry Friends or Masked Menace? See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 June 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Big Country  »

Box Office

Budget:

$24,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$41,455,230 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Dan Aykroyd as Roman Craig is seen fighting off a grizzly-bear in this movie. Aykroyd would later voice Yogi Bear, the title character in the film of the same name, it having also a similar national park type setting. See more »

Goofs

In the pool hall scene when Buck and Cammie first meet. Cammie angrily turns around and sends Bucky's pool stick flying at the pinball machine, but it is in Bucky's hands again when she storms off. See more »

Quotes

Roman: [while barbequing lobsters] How about the gourmet here, you know what he wanted? Hotdogs! You know what they make those things out of, Chet? You know? Lips and assholes!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Subtitled conversation between two raccoons -- Raccoon #1: "Why's Jody sitting in the lake?" Raccoon #2: "You didn't hear? She got shot in the ass!" Raccoon #1: "Oh no! Don't tell me..." Raccoon #2: "Yup... She's bald on both ends now!" See more »

Connections

Referenced in Parenthood (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Beaver Patrol
Written by Tim Archibald
Performed by Pop Will Eat Itself
Produced by Robert Gordon for The Fon Force
Pop Will Eat Itself appears courtesy of Chapter 22 Records Ltd.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not so great
8 July 2016 | by (The Penumbra) – See all my reviews

Having not seen this movie since I was about 8 I looked forward to a forgotten Candy/Aykroyd classic and a sharp script by John Hughes. As an adult though I was bitterly disappointed at how feeble and unimaginative this lame comedy is. It barely just manages to be a complete film and comes across as a haphazard collection of possible scenes from an abandoned Griswald Vacaction movie squished together in no real order.

John Candy is an earnest, bigger than life dad who takes his wife and two sons into the wilderness for a fun time in a log cabin. When they get there they are promptly interrupted by pompous brother-in-law Dan Aykroyd (in a reverse Cousin Eddie role) who imposes himself into every situation with his arrogant demeanor. There's no conflict. It's a set-up that barely develops and barely resolves.

Meanwhile a bunch of side gags occur and some extremely poor slapstick scenes make up the majority of the running time. A teen romance plot is shoehorned in there but has no real effect on anything (but I don't mind as it features jail-bait Lucy Deakins who is super cute). Absolutely none of this appears to be in any pre-planned order. Characters warp across the place, switch outfits, warp back, and switch to previous outfits. No scene relates to another and nothing properly interconnects.

Some shots appear to be sped up and a couple of smaller scenes are obviously shot in a soundstage (complete with interior echo and noticeable folds in the painted backdrop) instead of actually on location. It makes me think that they realized the movie was under- running when thrown together and re-shot some extra crap to make it longer. An eyeball-rolling "karaoke credits" (were these EVER popular with audiences?) fattens the length to an acceptable 85 minutes before the credits run over black.

Forget about this one. It's a misfire from all the talent involved. Your nostalgia for this flick will not hold up.


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