John McClane, officer of the NYPD, tries to save his wife Holly Gennaro and several others that were taken hostage by German terrorist Hans Gruber during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles.
It's Christmas time and the Griswolds are preparing for a family seasonal celebration, but things never run smoothly for Clark, his wife Ellen and their two kids. Clark's continual bad luck is worsened by his obnoxious family guests, but he manages to keep going knowing that his Christmas bonus is due soon. Written by
The movie was based on John Hughes' short story "Christmas '59", the second Vacation story to be published in National Lampoon's Magazine (the first was "Vacation '58", which was the basis for National Lampoon's Vacation (1983)). The Christmas story was printed in December 1980. The label on the home movie reel that Clark found in the attic was labelled "Xmas '59", a further allusion. See more »
At the beginning, the Griswolds are driving home with their new Christmas tree, roots and all, yet they brought no tools with them. All four of the Griswold's together could not uproot a 25-foot tall tree, let alone strap it to the roof of their vehicle without tools or equipment. See more »
The opening credits feature a cartoon of Santa delivering the Griswold family's Christmas presents while also getting electrocuted, hit by bricks, falling into the snow and being chased by a rolling snowman head See more »
The holidays are the hot time for those who love family to gather, and make merry. For the other 90% of the population it's a hassle, a burden, and frankly a pain in the butt. Without a doubt we've all experienced the "worst Christmas ever" but probably not like the Griswolds. This is without a doubt one of my favorite holiday films because even though family gatherings can be a pain, it's always there to (hilariously) remind me to be grateful.
This is without a doubt one of my favorite Chevy Chase movies, and it puts newer "National Lampoon" titles to shame. If you're a "deadpan comedy" fan and haven't seen this movie you owe it to yourself to wait until it gets cold, start a fire, and pop in this movie.
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