National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (1989) Poster

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Holidays are only complete with this movie
cmqp31 December 2002
My Christmas is filled with ritual, as I guess most people's are. Part of that ritual is National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, about which I have nothing but good things to say. This should be part of your Holiday season too, because despite it not seeming like it all the way through, the film as a whole is just so thoroughly festive, cheery and good-hearted.

It opens with a great set-piece, Clark taking his family out in the "front-wheel drive sleigh" to dig their Christmas tree out of the snow-covered ground. He's a desperate loser, but you have to love the guy, working his butt off to give his extended family the perfect Christmas. (That's the difference in this Vacation movie, by the way - the Griswolds don't go anywhere, their folks come to them).

So the shenanigans finding a tree set the pattern for a season of chaos, fighting in-laws, squirrels, stupid relatives, huge dogs, snooty neighbours and collapsing turkeys. And as if that wasn't stress enough for poor Clark, he's waiting for his Christmas bonus to come through to cover a cheque he's already written.

The script brims with festive jollity, enthusing the audience with Clark's excitement for the holidays. Stand out moments include the welcome (and hilarious) return of Randy Quaid as Cousin Eddie, the uber-hick sponger with a trailer-full of weirdo kids and rubber sheets, and Mae Questel's appearance as Aunt Bethany. She used to voice Betty Boo, and plays the crazy old woman to perfection.

See this movie. Get it on video. I normally watch it the first time on a miserable October Sunday, when I start to think properly about Christmas. Nothing can replace this movie as the one thing guaranteed to get me looking forward to late December. Fabulous stuff, and as festive for me as tinsel and carols. Cuddle up with this one.
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10/10
Best Vaction/Christmas Movie
Shawn Watson14 November 2000
Poor Clark Griswold, no matter how optimistic he is, his family vacations always seem to go severely wrong. First time around he went across America in a metallic pea Station Wagon and it ended in disaster. Then they went across Europe and met similar, albeit much less funny, results.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Griswolds, Clark is food additives expert who works for a company that doesn't appreciate him. He sets high standards for holiday events that no one can live up to and is notorious for dragging his grudging family along on every painstaking detail of every scheme. His wife Ellen (Beverly D'Angelo) is the voice of reason, who keeps the family rooted in reality and responds with frequent deadpan bewilderment to his constant disasters. The long-suffering kids, Russ and Audrey (Johnny Galecki and a very young Juliette Lewis) have turned into the living embodiment of pure cynicism, but there's no talking any sense into Clark Griswold. Ever!

But now Clark just wants to stay at home in the snowy Chicago suburbs for a 'fun, old-fashioned, family Christmas' and he's going to let nothing stop him. His enthusiasm for the holidays manages to infect the audience and you'll be rooting for him the whole way. He's an anti-Scrooge and if you're having a Christmas crisis then you need to watch this movie. Any disasters can be overcome.

But that's easier said than done. He didn't bargain on bickering family members (including the voice of Betty Boop, Mae Questel, as a senile old aunt), a house covered in non-working Christmas lights, a seriously over-cooked turkey, snotty Yuppie neighbors making fun of him or Cousin Eddie (Randy Quaid) and his hickabilly family turning up unannounced to sponge some Christmas cheer off him.

What stops it from being just another generic Christmas movie is a brilliant script by John Hughes packed full of hilarious set-pieces and perfect comic timing from Chevy Chase. He's a great actor but his appeal sadly declined in the 90s when he refused to evolve into more serious roles like Bill Murray did. Clark Griswold and Fletch are probably his most famous roles and this Vacation is definitely one you need to take.

It's hard to pick the best moments but Randy Quaid's sudden appearance will make you grin a mile wide, a cat wrapped up in a box (with Happy Birthday paper!) that meets an unfortunate end and 'an asshole in his bathrobe emptying a chemical toilet into the sewer' are just plain brilliant. But what gives Christmas Vacation something more that makes it so much more special that all the other Christmas movies is that wonderful theme song! It's absolutely brilliant! But that ain't the only great tune the film as to offer. There are also some classic songs by Ray Charles, Bing Crosby and Gene Autry.

Although not the best of the bunch (Harold Ramis' direction had an evil edge to the first film that made it just that little bit better), this film has become a Yuletide classic and must be watched every year. Since Christmas is full of annual traditions this film is definitely one you should add to the list. It would criminal to give it anything less that the highly coveted 10/10.
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10/10
Funny, Funny, Funny
dee.reid24 January 2002
This is the one Christmas movie that I don't anyone can ever get tired of. Chevy Chase returns in the third installment of the Vacation series as Clarke W. Griswold as he tries desperately to maintain his sanity during the holidays with all of his relatives coming to stay under his roof and enduring all the mishaps along the way.

This is the funniest film in the series plain and simple. Chevy Chase has never been better. Christmas Vacation is filled with countless jokes and gags that it's impossible not to laugh.

10/10
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10/10
The Perfect Holiday Comedy
jhclues15 August 2000
The Griswold family is set to celebrate the holidays like never before, in `National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation,' directed by Jeremiah S. Chechik and written by John Hughes. Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase) has decided to have a traditional, old-fashioned family Christmas, and has invited his parents and in-laws to stay with them through the season. He has a surprise he wants to share with everyone this year; with his Christmas bonus from work, he's putting in a pool, to which he's already committed the down-payment money (so the bonus had better come through, big time, or he's `in it up to here'). To kick off the season, he takes Ellen (Beverly D'Angelo) and the kids, Audrey (Juliette Lewis) and Rusty (Johnny Galecki) to the mountains to find the perfect `Griswold family Christmas tree. And it's only the first of one hilarious scene after another, as we follow Clark and clan through one long laugh-fest, filled with surprises and fun. Chase is at his best here, in the most enduring (and endearing) character he's ever done; Clark the Everyman, who only wants the best things for his family and himself, but whose plans more often than not go awry, doomed to fall just short of realization. When he decorates the outside of the house, he uses 25,000 twinkle lights; they use enough juice to black-out an entire neighborhood, and they do (once he can get them to work). Then when cousin Eddie (Randy Quaid) and cousin Catherine (Miriam Flynn) show up unexpectedly in the `RV' they now call home, Eddie asks Clark if he's surprised to see him. Surprised? Eddie is the last person on earth Clark expected, or wanted, to see. `Eddie,' he tells him, `I couldn't be more surprised if I woke up tomorrow morning with my head sewn to the carpet.' Another memorable scene involves a wild squirrel who came in with the Christmas tree and proceeds to make his appearance during dinner, only to provoke a wild romp upstairs and down as they all pursue (and in some cases try to elude) the deadly invader. A terrific cast was assembled for this movie, but Quaid is the stand-out, and he perfects the Eddie character in this one; forever the lamebrain with the big heart, and the one who takes the situation in hand when Clark's bonus turns out to be an enrollment in a jelly-of-the-month club. Clark's parents are played by Diane Ladd (Nora) and John Randolph (Clark, Sr.), and Ellen's by Doris Roberts (Frances) and E.G. Marshall (Art). Other notable performances are turned in by Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Margo) and Nicholas Guest (Todd), as Clark's yuppie next door neighbors, and also by William Hickey (Uncle Lewis) and Mae Questel (Aunt Bethany). Rounding out the supporting cast are Nicolette Scorsese (Mary), Cody Burger (Rocky), Ellen Hamilton Latzen (Ruby Sue) and Brian Doyle-Murray (Frank Shirley). `National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation' is timeless comedy, a must for every video collection. It can be watched over and over again, and the humor stays fresh while the laughs get even bigger. There's a little bit of every family in here, and this movie may be just the tonic you'll need some day to get you through your own `special' holiday season. I rate this one 10/10.
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8/10
A wonderful comedy and Christmas movie
MisterWhiplash22 July 2000
This is probably the best Vacation film to come from the National Lampoon series. There are so many laughs to go around (thanks to writer John Hughes) that it boggles the mind (and it might be the final time Checy Chase brings belly laughs). Here, the Griswalds don't go on a vacation, but instead the family stays in Chicago where there relatives come to town and hell will come too. Randy Quaid makes this film a treat by having just laugh out loud moments on the screen. Great fun for the whole family (I think). A+
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9/10
Oh, what fun it is....
Mister-619 August 1999
A comedy with laughs is good.

A comedy with feel-good laughs is better.

A comedy like "Christmas Vacation" is great.

When the Griswolds go on vacation, disaster is a certainty. But staying home to celebrate Christmas with some far-flung relatives (who obviously weren't flung far enough) leaves room for not only some top-drawer fun but also time to reflect on family, love, goodwill, belief in one's self....

Who expected so much from Chevy Chase?

After watching "Christmas Vacation", you will.

Nine stars. And when you light up your house this Christmas, make sure there's a nuclear reactor nearby.
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9/10
It could happen to you!
rmcnaughton-120 October 2008
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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10/10
I really can't imagine a better and funnier Christmas movie
krautR-930-60858222 February 2014
I think it's not necessary to write too much about this film.It's simply a masterpiece.In my opinion only Billy Wilder possibly-POSSIBLY-could have made an even better Christmas movie.For me that says a lot.

This is my second review.The first one was about "Rambo II" It's difficult to imagine something more contrasting than these two movies.

Whereas "Rambo II" represents (and shows) the bad,evil and disgusting things on earth,"Christmas Vacation" represents (and shows) the good,pleasant and beautiful ones.

For example the incredibly beautiful woman in the store.Chevy Chase's reaction is so funny!! And quite understandable as well.Who wouldn't have reacted similarly...

All characters-really ALL-in the movie are played excellently. Yes,also Audrey's.Juliette Lewis had to play the same character as,for example,Pamela Tiffin in "one,two three"-more or less a silly goose.

It's quite understandable If you don't like such characters-but-as in the case of "one,two,three"-why blame the actors for playing them convincingly? By the way,Griswold's yuppie neighbors also don't make a very pleasant impression- because (not although) they are played so well.

For me-and obviously for many others too-Christmas without "Christmas Vacation" cannot be a real Christmas.I would like to watch it more often than once a year,but I have the-unjustified,many may say-fear of liking this masterpiece somewhat less if I watch it "too" often.
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I cried from laughter!
Adriane26 November 1999
Since the holidays are approaching, I feel I should comment on this Christmas classic. Chevy Chase is hilarious once again as Clark, and this is the funniest Vacation next to the original when they go to Wally World. Some of the funniest lines too: "Gonna burn some dust here, eat my rubber." "It is a bit nipply out, I mean nippy out!". A Christmas movie to own , and if you don't, worthy of a rent at the holidays. Randy Quaid has some great moments as Eddie, and don't miss Chase's run down the hill in the sled!
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10/10
subtle funny parts
gkgrayson9 April 2005
We watch this movie every Christmas on Christmas Eve (the whole family gets together).We laugh harder every year as we unpeel the humorous layers of this film.Watch for when Clark's wife checks out Snot's balls.It's hilarious.How about when Eddie returns with Clark's boss and kicks him in the ass as they walk up the path to the house.How about these quotes: "Why is there water everywhere Todd?" " I don't know Margeaux." The Ray Charles Christmas song during the attic scene is one of the most beautiful songs I've heard.His voice is so sweet.The eyes crossed,kicked by a mule,falls in a well comment still cracks me up.I love it when Clark's Dad says that if he (Clark) needs any help that he (Dad) will be up in his room taking a nap.How about the office scene? "Good morning ,kiss my ass,kiss his ass,etc."This movie is more fun to watch in a large group.Enjoy.
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9/10
Classic Comedy
Christmas-Reviewer9 September 2017
BEWARE OF FALSE REVIEWS & REVIEWERS. SOME REVIEWERS HAVE ONLY ONE REVIEW TO THEIR NAME. NOW WHEN ITS A POSITIVE REVIEW THAT TELLS ME THEY WERE INVOLVED WITH THE MOVIE. IF ITS A NEGATIVE REVIEW THEN THEY MIGHT HAVE A GRUDGE AGAINST THE FILM . NOW I HAVE REVIEWED OVER 300 HOLIDAY FILMS & SPECIALS. I HAVE NO AGENDA.

This hilarious 3rd film from the "Vacation" movies series is now its most popular. I love the original "Vacation" however "Christmas Vacation" is just as funny maybe even funnier.

In this film the "I want to be the worlds greatest dad" Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase) is hosting a huge Christmas season at his home. Both his parents and his in-laws come in for the holidays and the party is also crashed by cousin Eddie. As we all know Christmas is never perfect and for Clark he sets himself up to a world of huge appointment.

Everything Clark seems to do in this film is BIG. From getting the tree to decorating his him. He wants to do everything to the max and for all us who had to cut down trees and put up Christmas lights we understand his frustration.

The film was released in 1989. I have seen this film every Christmas since. I never get tired of it. Its now part of my holiday tradition. I can honestly say the film is now a classic.

You do not need to of seen the previous films to know what's going. All you need is a funny bone.
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10/10
Classic
lvstan15 August 2017
I took my parents to see this opening night which was December 1, 1989. I am glad I did. All 3 of us could relate to the things we feel WE Must Do" at Christmas Time. From getting the tree to decorating the home! WE put huge expectations hoping everything will turn out fine and of course they don't.

This was the 3rd "Vacation" film and most likely the most popular. Millions of us could relate the original "Vacation". The family road trip during the Summer. However 99% could relate to something in "Christmas Vacation".

In this film it is of course holiday time and Clark wants to have a big old fashioned family Christmas. This means not only is his parents coming for Christmas but so is his in-laws/ Most importantly however Randy Quaid returns as Cousin Eddie.

This film is a laugh a minute. If you don't like cussing and are prudish stay away. I have seen this film every year since 1989 and I still laugh as hard as I did when I saw the first time.

The only film I think I have seen more is "The Wizard of Oz". If you have big family gatherings then watch this with them. Everyone will have a good time.
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10/10
Merrry Christmas from Chevy Chase!
Kristine19 January 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I don't know how anyone could ever go in life without seeing Christmas Vacation, it's one of the necessary movies you have to watch during the holidays. The reason being is that everyone can relate to this movie in one way or another. Who hasn't had their crazy family over during the holiday season? Well, that's Christmas Vacation, one of the funniest movies you will ever see. You think that Vacation topped it off with the laughs, believe me when I say that you've seen nothing yet. With an all star cast that clicked so well, you couldn't go wrong going on a great Christmas Vacation with the Griswolds.

Clark Griswold has really got the Christmas spirit this year, and his wife Ellen, son Rusty, and daughter Audrey have noticed that. Clark has invited Ellen's parents Art and Francis Smith, his own parents Clark and Nora Griswold, and his Aunt Bethany and Uncle Lewis to spend the holidays at the Griswold house in Chicago. But in spite of all the good intentions and careful planning, Christmas plans start to go awry: crazy squirrels, SWAT teams, burning Christmas trees, an over cooked turkey and of course a visit from the world's favorite white trash with a heart of gold Cousin Eddie! A Christmas ride not to be missed with the Griswold family.

One of the things I just adore about this movie is the little touches they put in the film: the grandparents falling asleep to an old Christmas movie playing on TV, the anxiety you feel as the doorbell rings knowing who's going to be behind it, and the little awkwardness during dinner when you hear everyone chewing their food. Chevy Chase is still such a pervert of course going for the hot sales lady instead of Cristy Brinkley this time, but you can't help but love and laugh at his fantasy in the back yard while the whole family is swimming in his most wanted work bonus: a family sized pool. He maybe a crazy pervert at times, but you feel the love he has for his family and how badly he wants Christmas to be perfect.

There are some great laughs in this movie: a squirrel gets caught in the Christmas tree that Clark brings in and it attacks the family and neighbors! Clark gets upset that there is no Christmas bonus so his cousin Eddie kidnaps Clark's boss, wraps him in a bow and gives him to Clark so he could kick him in the butt! A cat chews on the Christmas lights and gets electrocuted under the chair. But if you also get past all the slap stick humor, you still feel the Christmas message at the end, that despite all the craziness that comes around Christmas, don't forget what it's really about: peace and love. A wonderful ending and a perfect movie for Christmas that I watch every year, Christmas Vacation is definitely in Santa's movie collection somewhere.

10/10
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9/10
A hugely under-rated movie & my personal favourite comedy
Stephen Bailey23 December 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Wow, I see opinions are well divided here. Here's mine then. Most of the "National Lampoon" films are pretty awful, even my American friends agree on that. Vacation was good, but European Vacation, Vegas Vacation and a long list of others are best avoided. However, in amongst all the dross there are two absolute classics: Animal House & Christmas Vacation. I LOVE this movie and it's been a part of my family's Christmas every year since 1990. I'm delighted that British TV will be showing it again in 2 days from now, December 25th. Why is it so good? Because unlike almost every other comedy it's hilarious ALL the way through. There's no let-up, no "weak" sections and no scene that doesn't work. From Chevy Chase driving his car under a 40 ton truck right at the beginning, to the SWAT team crashing into his living room right at the end, you'll be laughing the whole way through. We all know what a nightmare Christmas can be and this film takes the idea, wonderfully, to the ultimate. Clark Grizwald tries to give his family the perfect Christmas, way beyond anything that could possibly happen in real life, and it's - literally - a disaster from start to finish. I'm sure every husband & father in the western world will identify with Grizwald and see something of ourselves in his antics? The supporting cast are all excellent, particularly Randy Quaid as the freeloading hillbilly Cousin Eddy. I recently discovered Chevy Chase's greedy boss is played by Bill Murray's brother. yeah, I can see the similarity now. There are SO many priceless scenes in this movie it's hard to pick out the best, but if you like the thought of exploding Christmas trees, electrocuted pussy-cats, wrecking your neighbours' house and kidnapping your boss (gift-wrapped) then you'll love Christmas Vacation. I give this movie 9 out of 10 and hope everyone who hasn't seen it yet will take the opportunity, and treasure it as much as I do.
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8/10
National Lampoon: Christmas Vacation will give you the hap-hap-happies Christmas ever! Great watch!
ironhorse_iv29 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Where do you think you're going? Nobody's leaving. Nobody's walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas. No, no. We're all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We're gonna press on, and we're gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny f*cking Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse. We're going to have the hap-hap-happiest Christmas ever! It's that time of year again! You can't celebrate Christmas without watching National Lampoon Christmas Vacation, first! Directed by Jeremiah S. Chechik. It is the third installment in National Lampoon's Vacation film series, and was written by John Hughes, based on his short story in National Lampoon magazine, "Christmas '59". This movie is notable for being the only one of the Vacation series to take place at the Griswold home which gives the vacation concept, something new. Some people think as this movie as a reboot than a sequel. The film tells the story of Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase) whom is trying to create the best Christmas for his family, but everything, he wants to happen, go against his favor. Can Clark Griswold make the best Christmas holiday for his family or will it turn out to be another disaster? Watch it, to find out. Without spoiling the film, too much. The movie is a great watch. Most of the humors hit the funny bone than miss to me. I love the animated opening credits with the Christmas vacation theme. Apparently even Santa Claus isn't immune to the comic misfortune. I love the slapstick humor has for Clark. Clark trying to set up Christmas lightings is probably the highlight of the film. The movie was very smart in its recycle on old jokes like the Easter eggs, Wally World Cups. Still, other old clichés felt a little overused by other films at the time such as the dog humping scene. Even, Mele Kalikimaka pool sequence was kinda overused. It remind me, of the pool sequence from 1982's Fast Time at Ridgemont High. It wasn't really funny. The fan service, Mary's (Nicolette Scorsese) scenes are hot, but it could be taken out, in my opinion as it has nothing to bring to the table. She's no Christie Brinkley. Some people might not like the dark crude raunchy humor, the movie brings. After all, it does have a cat getting killed on screen and an elderly man getting catch on fire. This movie might not be for everybody. If you got small children, this movie might not be for them with all the sex, violence and harsh language themes. A parent should judge for themselves, if this movie is alright for their children. For the most part, it felt like a PG-13. The movie is well acted. The original cast is just as good as they were in the original previous movie. Chevy Chase is awesome as the everyman father, who just wanted to give the best Christmas ever to his family, but has to fight so much to do it. In my opinion, this is Chevy Chase's greatest film. Supporting characters like Ellen (Beverly D'Angelo), were alright for the most part, despite her, being the submissive of sorts, type of wife. The children, Aubrey (Juliette Lewis) and Rusty (Johnny Galecki) were kinda forgettable as they are given little to no screen time. It's seem like in every Vacation movie, new actors are always playing the Griswold's children. It can be a bit confusing as Rusty and Audrey's age differ from film to film. In this film, Audrey tends to be older, despite Rusty being older in the previous two films. Anyways, the previous Griswold's children actors really didn't do much, after their film. At less, these actors went on to become bigger names in the industry. One of the most entertaining part of the film, had to come with Randy Quaid's character of Cousin Eddie who comes back from the original film to plays the opposite of Chevy Chase's straight man character as the scene-stealing slob. He wasn't too annoying or unlikeable. Quaid did the right amount of balance. Other people worth noting is Julia Louis-Dreyfus as the yippie neighbor, Margo Chester, whom always get accident abuse from the Griswold. She was funny. The movie has way too much elder characters to remember. Those could be cut down, or written better. The only ones, I can remember are Francis (Doris Roberts), Bethany (Mae Questel), Lewis (William Hickey) and Art (E.G. Marshall). All of them add their own bits of amusement. Overall: Having seen the previous two films in the Lampoon series. 1983's National Lampoon's Vacation & 1985's National Lampoon's European Vacation. I was delighted, this film was really enjoyable. In my opinion, it's the best comedy in the National Lampoon series as a whole. It was not a disappointment, like the sequel, 2003's Christmas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie's Island Adventure & 1997's National Lampoon's Vegas Vacation. Since its release in 1989, Christmas Vacation has often been labeled as a modern Christmas classic. This film should definitely raise your spirits and give thanks that your Christmas isn't as stressful as the Griswold.
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10/10
A Classic Christmas Comedy
Sabrz22 June 2009
Christmas Vacation is one of the best Christmas comedies that I have seen. Now that it has been 20 years since it was released, I think it is safe to say it has attained classic status.

Christmas Vacation follows the Griswald family dealing with Christmas. Unlike the other vacation films the Griswalds don't travel anywhere. They have Christmas right at home. However just because they don't travel doesn't mean that it isn't a funny movie.

The film is about Clark Griswald (played by Chevy Chase who does his role perfectly) trying to create the perfect Christmas for his family. However much like the other films things constantly go wrong or don't succeed. As the film goes on the mishaps become worse and funnier by the second.

Christmas Vacation is a hilarious film that will have you laughing constantly. It is possibly the best of the Vacation films and is well worth watching.
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7/10
Funny, but not as funny
brandonleewainscott10 April 2015
Warning: Spoilers
This was fun to watch, but nowhere near as fun as the original. Chevy Chase played his part perfectly as always. And the other characters were funny too. The nasty father in law, the crazy, senile aunt, the cigar smoking uncle with the wig, the hillbilly relative Eddie, etc. The touching moments necessary for a good comedy (like comic relief in a tragedy) are well woven in. I almost cried when Clark was stuck in the attic and looking at old movies of when he was a child with his mother there. Of course that whole scene was funny with the boards that we plopping up, hitting him in the head. And the yuppie neighbours were hilarious. Nice touch.

However, I just cannot get into this as much as the old one. It is not something I wold watch again I don't think. I might...but not like I would watch the original. The story line did not flow as well. I think it did in the old one because they had somewhere they were going. Here they did not have that, and they did not have any sense of counting down until Christmas Day. Well, funny, but not as funny, and not as well written out.
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2/10
Chevy Chase Christmas Disaster Jolt
warpreactor2 December 2008
I'm a noteworthy Chevy Chase fan. Not a huge fan, but noteworthy. I'm 34 and have somehow managed to never see this flick. So when I jumped on Amazon to purchase a slew of Christmas movies this year, and ran across this "hidden jewel", I was very excited. Lots of good feedback on it.

This has got to be the poorest performance of Chase's career. He completely coasted through all the witless dialogue. It was as if someone wrote the script over the weekend. The bloopers are very obvious, and the jokes are antiquated even for the 80s. The sets, or lack thereof, were so drab that I think they intentionally threw in the Nicolette Scorcese scenes just to distract us as much as the main character. The only actor who showed an ounce of spark was Randy Quaid, but his character was so redneck and purile that it was hard to like him.

1989 was an earlier era in filmaking, a more innocent time when shoestring budgets and obvious comedy were more invisible to the viewer. It's possible I could have found this amusing if I'd caught it in it's hayday, and subsequently relegated the film to cherished memory of yester decade status. But unfortunately, I saw it for the first, and now last, time tonight. This disk is a coaster.
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10/10
One of the funniest movies in My opinion!
Movie Nuttball14 December 2002
This is My favorite Christmas movie! Its so funny and it has an excellent cast and acting!The film has non-stop laughs and I recommend all people who love comedies to rent this or even buy it! Its the at funny!
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10/10
Simply the Finest Christmas Comedy Ever Filmed
jlthornb5122 May 2015
There is barely room for discussion regarding the fact this is a Christmas comedy that's perfect in virtually every respect. Withing its running time there are some of the funniest moments ever captured on film, holiday movie or otherwise. The script is one of the most hilarious, sharp, and intelligent in cinema history. The direction is inspired and technically it is without a doubt excellent. There is something about it that so stunningly captures the spirit of Christmas and the atmosphere of a family gathering. The cast is nothing less than remarkable, with an astonishing display of incredible talent. Everyone does a superb job and their comic timing is unbeatable. As an ensemble, it is truly a fantastic group effort. This is a director's dream cast and Jeremiah Chechik puts them through their paces as if he had a magic wand. Chevy Chase has never been better and Beverly D'Angelo is utterly amazing. Randy Quaid gives a knockout performance as Cousin Eddie and the motion picture wouldn't be complete without his visit. A yearly favorite at our house and one my late wife looked forward to very much. It is a happy memory of the holidays and always managed to make us laugh even though we've seen it every season since it was first shown on HBO. A funny, lovely gift to everyone for Christmas.
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10/10
Christmas Vacation
Sam Reinke25 September 2014
A classic and must-see film during the holiday season is National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. Christmas Vacation, released in 1989, was brilliantly written by John Hughes and directed by Jeremiah S. Chechik. This laugh out loud comedy promises to have everyone entertained throughout its 97 minute runtime with performers such as Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, and Randy Quaid. Christmas Vacation is bound to entertain the whole family through its many big name performers, its surprise plot twists, and its relatability to many families.

Christmas Vacation is filled with many surprises beginning to end. Chevy Chase (Clark Griswold) and Bevery D'Angelo (Ellen Griswold) want to get the whole extended family over for one big "Griswold family Christmas." A family dinner is planned with a highly anticipated summer surprise announcement for the Griswold family. Little do the Griswolds know though, the Christmas weekend will be a lot more work than they originally thought. The Griswold family Christmas is filled with frozen eyes, burning trees, a surprise visit from Randy Quaid (Cousin Eddie), a police raid, and much much more. Can the Griswolds overcome their holiday troubles and salvage a pleasant family get-together?

Christmas Vacation makes a very good connection to the viewing audience because many people can relate to the Griswold Family. This movie is a classic example of how family get-togethers, especially around the holiday season, cannot be all they are cracked up to be. Even though the Griswolds have a lot of hardships in the movie, they show how family can come together to make the best of poor decisions. Clark and Ellen Griswold make one of the most relatable husband and wife duos in the film industry. Bickering goes on between Clark and Ellen throughout the movie due to their lack of wise decisions/ ideas. However, they always end up supporting each other in the end no matter the outcome. Randy Quaid serves as the perfect example of that one annoying family member that everyone has. Pretty much everything he does in the movie ends up being a giant failure. Even though Quaid's character is not the sharpest tool in the shed though, he definitely wins the award for having the biggest heart. The director did an excellent job at making this movie relatable to all viewers through the various personalities each character possesses and through the many events that occur throughout the Griswold family Christmas.

If you are looking for a good movie to watch with the entire family this holiday season, look no further than National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. The cast and director have come together to make a perfect movie that relates to everyone who ever has had or attempted to have a family holiday party. This film will make you laugh and say "wow, our family is kind of like the Griswolds!" This year be sure to deck the halls by watching the one of a kind Christmas special - National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.
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9/10
Great Christmas Classic
Rainey Dawn25 June 2014
Christmas Vacation is a hilarious movie and you are sure to laugh at least once while viewing the film unless your name happens to be Scrooge or Grinch! I've loved the Griswold family since they took a "Vacation" to Wally World then off for a "European Vacation"! Their "Christmas Vacation" is just as comical as their other two.

If you have refused to watch this film or if you just plain missed it - then I urge you to watch the movie! You many laugh so hard you will spit your drink out of your nose while tears of laughter stream down your face.

This is a great Christmas movie classic! 9/10
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9/10
Hilarious movie!
Warning: Spoilers
Synopsis: Chevy Chase stars as Clark Griswold who is determined to have a perfect family Christmas. In this third movie in the National Lampoon Vacation film series, Clark and his family have one entertaining disaster after another. Clark's wish to have a small family party ends with a full house of bickering family members, pets and even the SWAT team.

John Hughes brings another hilarious comedy to the big screen. Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo return as Clark and Ellen Griswold accompanied by new actors as their children, Rusty (Johnny Galecki) and Audrey (Juliette Lewis).

The movie begins with Clark and family going to a Christmas tree forest and ends up with Clark drag racing a beat up truck and ending up wedged under a semi. When the family finally decides on the perfect tree, they realize they have forgotten the chainsaw. The tree they choose is way longer than their car and still attached to its roots.

The movie gets funnier when Cousin Eddie and family show up in a beat up RV expecting to spend Christmas with Clark. Eddie decides to empty his RV waste into the neighborhood drainpipe which leads to several explosions throughout the movie.

The sledding scene with Chevy Chase is the most memorable in the movie. Clark oils his sled and takes a wild ride through the roads and forest to end up in a Wal-Mart parking lot unhurt.

Chevy Chase carries the film with his comical delivery. His facial expressions and crazed actions keep the audience entertained. Mae Questal as senile Aunt Bethany keeps the audience laughing with her confused actions and comments. The scenery includes real life images. The plot keeps the movie interesting and the audience wondering what will happen next.

This movie is nearly perfect and I would give it a 9. The only thing I would improve upon is having Clark's boss undergo more of a fight over the missing Christmas bonus instead of just giving in and adding twenty percent to Clark's bonus.
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10/10
Funniest Christmas movie ever made
Zbigniew_Krycsiwiki1 February 2014
The film has several references to the original National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation: opening scene, with the family singing in the car, is similar to an early scene in the original Vacation; their car flying over snowbank is similar to car flying over roadblock in Arizona in Vacation; another befuddled, elderly aunt drops in, but the movie is good enough that it doesn't become a rehash of the first film.

It takes its time getting started; the first thirty minutes are hit and miss, but after that, it gets good, and the final thirty minutes are hilarious.

Aunt Bethany is introduced with some funny lines ("Is your house on fire?" she cheerfully asks upon seeing 25.000 Christmas lights on it) but filmmakers wisely avoided a repeat of Aunt Edna from the original, as this confused granny lives happily through the holiday.

Speaking of *holiday*, 'Holiday Road' worked well in the original Vacation, was tired and formulaic in Euro Vacation, and was wisely avoided here, and replaced with a wonderful original score.

The music, and the overall tone of the entire film, is sentimental without being overly sappy; Clark watching old home movies of his youth has just the right amount of sentiment, then it was ended perfectly with a well done gag.

Uncle Lewis is a delightful Grinch, with his strangled voice and deadpan delivery of lines which could have been painfully unfunny complaints, but his delivery and timing makes them work.

The kids are great replacements, upgrades, for the two awful, nitwit kids in Euro Vacation.

My favourite film in the National Lampoon's Vacation series, and probably my favourite Christmas movie, also.
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6/10
More Of A Break Than A Vacation
cultfilmfreaksdotcom25 February 2013
Warning: Spoilers
The third VACATION and the second written by story creator John Hughes, Christmas is more of a reboot than a sequel, starting everything from scratch for a new generation: as if there were no other trips beforehand.

Audrey's still in high school and Rusty's thirteen-years-old again. The kids and mom don't amount to much anyway, merely witnessing Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase at the tail-end of his comedic peak) and his clumsy misadventures as the host of an overcrowded holiday home: including both sets of in-laws.

The only real input for family's sake is Randy Quaid's white trash Cousin Eddie. A scene- stealer in the first film given his own fifteen minute layover, Eddie becomes Clark's partner- in-crime. But Quaid seems to be doing an exaggerated imitation, turning Eddie into an over- the-top comic book character. Meanwhile, Clark's reactionary disdain for his cousin-in-law's gross personality becomes redundant after the first ten times.

Most of the film's spoken jokes are limp and somewhat forced. The funniest moments rely on physical gags: the fate of a curious cat; an enraged squirrel; and Christmas house lights that refuse to work.

The direction, including hand-held camera and intentionally awkward moments, flows pretty well with the John Hughes script that, as usual, mixes semi dark comedy with pathos and hijinx. While the soundtrack can be spooky and ominous, befitting what's going on in Clark's troubled mind, successfully contrasting with the old fashion Norman Rockwell house and backdrop.

Touted as a Holiday classic, this is really a hit-and-miss outing. The most family oriented Lampoon venture keeps some of the blue humor hidden yet it's implied throughout.

Glimpses of a brooding Clark at work in the office, hoping for a bonus check to buy a swimming pool, and the intrusion of a put-upon yuppie couple who live next door – victims of whatever Clark's doing outside – are distractions to get us out of the crowded house. Yet with these sporadic reminders of real life, we often forget we're on vacation.
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