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National Lampoon's Vacation (1983)

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

Director:

Harold Ramis

Writers:

John Hughes (screenplay), John Hughes (short story "Vacation '58")
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Popularity
548 ( 273)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Chevy Chase ... Clark Griswold
Beverly D'Angelo ... Ellen Griswold
Imogene Coca ... Aunt Edna
Randy Quaid ... Cousin Eddie
Anthony Michael Hall ... Rusty Griswold
Dana Barron ... Audrey Griswold
Eddie Bracken ... Roy Walley
Brian Doyle-Murray ... Kamp Komfort Clerk
Miriam Flynn ... Cousin Catherine
James Keach ... Motorcycle Cop
Eugene Levy ... Car Salesman
Frank McRae ... Grover
John Candy ... Lasky, Guard at Walleyworld
Christie Brinkley ... The Girl in the Ferrari
Jane Krakowski ... Cousin Vicki
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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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 July 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

National Lampoon's Vacation See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,333,358, 29 July 1983, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$61,400,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Matty Simmons and Warner Brothers Executive Mark Canton wanted John Landis to direct this movie. Simmons talked to him about it, but Landis turned it down, because he was working on An American Werewolf in London (1981) at the same time. See more »

Goofs

Mountains and palm trees near Chicago, in the opening scene when they are pulling into the car lot. See more »

Quotes

Clark: Excuse me, could you please tell me how to get back on the express way?
Pimp: Fuck yo mama!
Clark: Thank you very much.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the credits the title of the Ramones song "Blitzkrieg Bop" is misspelled as "Blitzkreig Bop" See more »

Alternate Versions

The TV version includes some alternate lines, including:
  • The man they ask directions from responds with "Who do I look like, Christopher Columbo?" instead of his R-rated response.
  • Eddie's daughter credits her science teacher, not her father, with saying she's the best at french kissing.
  • When they lose the small suitcase while driving, in the movie version, Clark says the only thing that can't be replaced that was lost is Ellen's diaphragm, which is changed to birth control pills for the edited version.
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in American Dad!: The Scarlet Getter (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Brahms's Lullaby
(uncredited)
Music by Johannes Brahms
[Plays just before Clark wakes up from sleeping behind the wheel.]
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
'Excuse me, I'm looking for directions back to the expressway'
19 February 2011 | by CuriosityKilledShawnSee 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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