6.6/10
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87 user 20 critic

The Great Outdoors (1988)

PG | | Comedy | 17 June 1988 (USA)
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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:
... Roman Craig
... Chet Ripley
... Connie Ripley
... Kate Craig
... Buck Ripley
... Ben Ripley (as Ian Giatti)
Hilary Gordon ... Cara Craig
Rebecca Gordon ... Mara Craig
... Wally
Zoaunne LeRoy ... Juanita
... Cammie
... Waitress
... Jimbo
... Herm
... Reg
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Storyline

Nostalgic about the good old days in the honeymoon cabin, the patriarch Chet and the Ripley family set off to the idyllic woods of Wisconsin for the summer vacation. However, their plans for a peaceful family bonding in the heart of the untamed nature will be thwarted, when the high-rolling brother-in-law Roman and the snotty Craig family decide to crash the party. Eventually, as the two families try to have a good time together, a seemingly endless series of misfortunes and mini-disasters with thirsty leeches, cunning racoons and a mythical wild bear, threaten to ruin the vacation. What will it take to salvage the weekend? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Ten Top Tips for Family Trips See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

17 June 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Big Country  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$24,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$41,455,230
See more on IMDbPro »

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 and John Candy were alumnus from two different comedy television shows, Saturday Night Live (1975) and SCTV (1976) respectively. Saturday Night Live (1975) was shot live, while SCTV (1976) was not. It was taped in Edmonton, Alberta. See more »

Goofs

When Roman is about to get in his car at the end of the movie, it is already running, yet when he closes the door, the car is heard starting off-screen. See more »

Quotes

Chet: You'll have to excuse my brother-in-law. He gets a couple of cocktails in him and he becomes an expert on everything.
Roman: I don't need cocktails for that. Was that a shot?
Chet: No, that was the truth.
Roman: Oh, that was a shot!
Chet: That... was a shot.
Roman: [to the bartender] Speaking of shots, set us up!
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 Phineas and Ferb: The Great Indoors/Canderemy (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Cabin Fever
Written by David Wilcox and Sadia Sadia (as Sadia)
Performed by David Wilcox
Produced by Sadia Sadia (as Sadia)
Courtesy of Capitol Records/EMI of Canada
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not so great
8 July 2016 | by 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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