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The Cast Makes This One So Special
Michael_Elliott20 December 2012
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (1989)

*** (out of 4)

The third film in the series has Clark (Chevy Chase) deciding to stay home and instead of going anywhere he invites all the family over for the holidays and sure enough nothing goes right. I must admit that I enjoyed the previous two films more than this one but there's still enough laughs here to make this one well worth seeing. I think the film certainly has some flaws in it but when there are so many laughs you really can't complain too much. I think Chase is in fine form as he goes more over-the-top here than in the previous installments. He's so wild here that at times he seems like he's playing a cartoon character. This certainly isn't a bad thing as Chase can handle this type of comedy but there were a few too many slapstick scenes early on. I think what really makes this film so memorable is the terrific supporting cast. Beverly D'Angelo is just fine as the supporting wife but we get terrific work from Diane Ladd, E.G. Marshall, Juliette Lewis, John Randolph, William Hickey, Brian Doyle-Murray, Julia Louis-Dreyfuss and Mae Questel. The stand out however has to be Randy Quaid returning as Cousin Eddie. The actor really does a terrific job bringing this character to life and the comic timing is just flawless no matter what he's doing. There are so many classic scenes here that it's hard to pick out the best but some of the highlights include the cat sequence, the walk through Wal Mart, the hilarious dog-under-the-table and of course the first appearance of Eddie.
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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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Best Vaction/Christmas Movie
CuriosityKilledShawn14 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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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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A Laugh Riot!
namashi_119 June 2013
The third installment in National Lampoon's Vacation film series, 'Christmas Vacation' is A Laugh Riot! A slap-stick, over-the-top comedy, that delivers laughter in abundance.

'Christmas Vacation' Synopsis: The Griswold family's plans for a big family Christmas predictably turn into a big disaster.

'Christmas Vacation' is gleefully funny & lively. John Hughes's Screenplay is notorious, wacky & extremely funny. Even the dialogue are so clever at times. Jeremiah S. Chechik's Direction is efficient. Cinematography, Editing & Art Design, deserve a special mention.

Performance-Wise: Chevy Chase is fantastic, as always. He pulls off every joke with effortless ease. Beverly D'Angelo supports very well. Juliette Lewis is adorable, while Randy Quaid is in form. Johnny Galecki, John Randolph, Diane Ladd, William Hickey & Mae Questel are perfect. Julia Louis-Dreyfus & Nicholas Guest are splendid in cameos.

On the whole, 'Christmas Vacation' works big time.
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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.

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A wonderful comedy and Christmas movie
Quinoa198422 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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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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Must watch
chefkrull10 December 2020
This is my favorite Christmas movie. I watch it multiple times a year. Christmas wouldn't be complete without it.
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Tis the season to be ...
kosmasp9 June 2020
... crazy? At least at the brink of madness at times. Chevy Chase as Mr. Griswold .. not few will remember those names. I reckon some might have wanted to be in the extended and already big Griswold family alltogether. Now I might have rewatched this out of season, but I do think it works no matter what time of the year it is.

And that is what makes this a great comedy. Also the actors and the script involved! Some jokes may be a bit .. well don't be too woke about certain things or too PC. Also yes some are just plain silly and there is a lot of don't try this at home stuff. It's a movie, try to accept it (like when Chevy is in the attic and sets his chair in the one spot where it makes no sense at all, other than to get a laugh out of the audience).

So great cast and good natured humor. What else do you need?
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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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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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Merry Christmas
bevo-1367830 March 2020
I loved this movie especially the bit with the Christmas lights
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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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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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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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Washington-Matt22 December 2020
Year after year, never gets old. I might watch other Christmas classics every few years, this one gets watched every year!
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Sunsphxsuns13 November 2021
Although there's not a whole lot I can add to what's already been written about this iconic 1989 holiday themed film, I'll try to offer some speculation as to why fans continue to unabashedly adore this crazy movie. Heck, I even purchased a pair of the Officially Licensed Warner Brothers Christmas Vacation Moose Mugs, and by gosh I fill them with strong eggnog (or Tom & Jerry) for a spirited toast every Christmas!

If you compare all of the National Lampoon Vacation movies, this is arguably the one that stands out the most. Indeed, Christmas Vacation may be the undisputed Holy Grail of all contemporary holiday themed films.

What is it about this particular movie that has people of all ages still quoting selected scenes word for word? Perhaps it's the Griswold family, emblematic of all that we dare not speak of when it comes to families merrily torturing each other over the holidays? Even with the best of intentions, sometimes the holidays can get overwhelming. And when that happens, "good tidings" quickly evaporate and are replaced with chaos, foul moods, and unconscionable bad behavior. And from there it's down the proverbial rabbit hole for one and all.

The prolific writer/director/producer, the late John Hughes, understood these complicated family dynamics very well. There's no such thing as a perfect Christmas, or a perfect family, perfect job, or perfect life. Nothing human generated is perfect. And it is these imperfections that make Christmas Vacation such a uniquely allegorical viewing experience.

No spoilers here as usual, but I can reveal that the absolutely hilarious role of Clark's Aunt Bethany was played by Mae Questel, and sadly, this was her final film appearance. And for those IMDb readers who are too young to recall, Mae was the 1930s cartoon voice of the lovable Betty Boop!
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Fairly strong comedy with Chevy Chase on top form
snoozejonc1 January 2021
Clark Griswold plans an old fashioned family Christmas.

I enjoyed this one for it's humour and Chevy Chase's hilarious performance.

The story is pretty thin but contains a little nod to Dickens' A Christmas Carol with the Griswolds in place of the Cratchits and Brian Doyle-Murray playing a Scrooge-like Frank Shirley. The main focus is Clark's mission to have a big, joyful family Christmas and everything associated with this that goes spectacularly wrong.

As a comedy it is reasonably strong and the jokes come thick and fast. From the start we see Clark's visual buffoonery in a plethora of disastrous actions, decisions and situations. There is a fair bit of slapstick and one-liners that worked well for me. Also the family dynamics involving the children, grandparents and other eccentric relatives are easily recognisable.

Christmas Vacation is probably best known for Clark's ridiculously over the top exterior light show that he plasters all over the house. These are the strongest scenes in the movie and Chevy Chase has some of his most memorable moments here.

Chase's performance for me is superb. He can make me laugh with facial expressions, physical awkwardness and one-liners. It is him and his characters that carry most of his movies and this is no different. Clark is a control freak who has everything planned out and we have the pleasure of seeing him unravel as the plans backfire. He has good support from Beverly D'Angelo and the remaining cast but it all revolves around him. Julia Louis-Dreyfus has some funny moments as one half of a couple of Yuppie neighbours.

My only negatives are that it does contain a few too many recycled concepts from the original Vacation movie for my liking, such as 'the girl', the car-jump, animal death, Clarke's meltdown and heart to heart with a child. Also for me, the comedy dips in quality a bit in the second half, particularly with the protracted squirrel sequence and the repetition of fire/explosion related gags.

As 'Christmas movies' go it's pretty good. How many have a cultural impact you can actually see when driving around suburban housing estates after dark during the month of December?
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lukem-527606 December 2020
CHEVY CHASE IS A COMIC GENIUS & LEGEND OF CINEMA!!!! Christmas Vacation is my absolute favourite Xmas film as it's beyond hilarious thanks to the GENIUS that is CHEVY CHASE. I grew up watching & loving this Vacation film & of Course i love all the fantastic Vacation films & pretty much all of Chevy's flicks some of my faves of the Comedy legend's are FLETCH, FLETCH LIVES, SPIES LIKE US, THE VACATION FILMS, THREE AMIGOS, MEMOIRS OF AN INVISIBLE MAN, NOTHING BUT TROUBLE & COPS & ROBBERSONS, those are the one's i grew up watching & loving. Chevy has been a huge part of my movie loving world since little & consider him the best movie Dad character ever with his hilarious but also touching role as Clark Griswold, the guy just wants to have the best time with his family & have as much fun as possible, he's an old fashioned all American Family man & i love him for it. Christmas Vacation is a masterpiece of Comedy it's truly hilarious from it's Awesome animated opening to it's crazy ending it's a fun filled & hilarious crazy Christmas Comedy that never gets old, i still laugh like i did as a kid watching it. Christmas Vacation is also a really beautiful film as its drenched in the beautiful look of Christmas with lots of snow & lots & lots of lights lol & there's a real sweet innocence fun to everything & at the heart of all the craziness is a nice Family man trying to have a big old fun family Christmas & he loves his family.

Chevy is fantastic here as Clark & is probably the best of the Vacation franchise & really shows why he's one of greatest comic leading men in Cinema history. Chevy is also a real nice family man in real life too & that makes me respect him & appreciate his films even more!!! Big Nostalgic Love for Chevy Chase, i wish Clark Griswold was my dad. A total Christmas Classic & Chevy is my favourite actor
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Where's The Tylenol?
mrturk18212 December 2015
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation not only stands as one of the best Christmas movie staples around the holiday season, it's one of my all-time favorite movies. This is the third entry in the National Lampoon's Vacation franchise, and it follows the Griswold family setting up their house for the arrival of their relatives. Along the way, Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase) encounters a few situations that hilariously go wrong. The comedy is inventively funny, as it takes some of the recurring jokes in the Vacation movies and refreshes them for the holiday theme. The acting talent is brilliant. Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Randy Quaid, and Miriam Flynn all reprise their roles from the previous Vacation movies, Cape Fear's Juliette Lewis and The Big Bang Theory's Johnny Galecki step into the roles of Audrey and Rusty this time around, and there are supporting performances from Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Brian Doyle-Murray, Doris Roberts, and Mae Questel. Each performer does great in their roles, especially Randy Quaid as Cousin Eddie, who steals most of the scenes. And the writing is incredible, as it balances out the comedy with moments of Clark trying to realize the true meaning of Christmas. Christmas Vacation is one of 5 sequels in the National Lampoon's Vacation franchise, and it's easily the best one. It may not eclipse the first Vacation movie, but with its holiday theme, it stands on its own. It's a timeless classic that continues to hold up today, and it has managed to stand as one of the best Christmas movies, as well as one of the funniest movies of all-time.

Score: 99/100

Recommendation: The highest of recommendations
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Gives You Everything You Would Want From A Christmas Movie And More,
lesleyharris3027 December 2012
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation is a terrific movie,one of the greatest Christmas movies ever made and a must watch during the holidays that the whole family will enjoy,the movie is a huge laugh from start to finish,with a great story line,fantastic characters,a hilarious cast,which keeps the whole movie extremely enjoyable,but it wouldn't be anywhere without Chevy Chase.

Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase) wants to have the perfect,big family Christmas with his entire family,including his parents and his wives parents,but things don't go exactly as planned when his Clarks cousin Eddie,along with his family, drops by unexpectedly to spend Christmas with them.
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It was an ugly tree anyway...
paul_haakonsen2 May 2017
"National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" is a Christmas classic, and there is no denying it. It is one of those movies that you just have to watch year after year come Christmas time. And the movie never gets old, no matter how many times you have seen it.

Following in the tradition of the previous "National Lampoon's Vacation" movies, also starring Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo, the 1989 "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" is every bit as hilarious, enjoyable and entertaining as the previous movies. And if you have seen the previous movies, which I assume you have as they are also classics, then you will immediately love "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" as well.

The Griswold family is hosting a big family gathering for the Christmas holidays and have everything planned out, from decorating the house to the grand feast. But of course everything goes awry for Clark and the family, true to the Griswold family streak of bad luck and misfortune.

What works out so well for "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" is a combination of things. First of all, the storyline is good and hilarious, with some truly wonderful situations playing out on the screen. But it is also a gallery of some magnificent characters with lots of personalities and quirks, and it is characters that easily can be identified with members of your own family. And it is, of course, also the comedy that is ever-present throughout the entire movie. There are so many laughs throughout the entire movie, and it is fabulous because it is laughs that you enjoy every year as you watch this Christmas classic.

Chevy Chase is of course the embodiment of Clark W. Griswold and he carries this role with grace and perfection. And Beverly D'Angelo is right alongside him in her role as Ellen Griswold, his wife. And she not only compliments Chevy Chase, but she also stands her own ground quite well. Furthermore there are great performances by Johnny Galecki, Juliette Lewis, Randy Quaid, Doris Roberts, John Randolph and William Hickey to name but a few of the performers who shine here in this movie.

"National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" has truly withstood the test of time and stands out as a classic movie to brighten up Christmas year after year.
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The most laughs of any holiday movie
SimonJack1 February 2015
Going back to the 1930s, Hollywood has produced some very good humorous holiday films. National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation has more laughs than any that I have seen. Year after year, this movie continues to regale me over the holidays. Come Thanksgiving each year, I start checking my DVD list and begin playing my favorite holiday flicks. I like to save Christmas Vacation until close to Christmas. After my children and their families have finished most of the hectic shopping for Christmas, this is a good film to sit down to for some laughs. This is an adult film – in much of the humor and some of the language and actions. We will show it to kids when they reach their teens, with explanations and reminders about foul language or disrespectful parts.

There is a genius in the writing of this film that combines occasional witty dialog with side talking built around slapstick and other situations. The situations and characters are sources of many laughs. It's all built around Clark Griswold, played to perfection by Chevy Chase. This is one of those rare original films that makes a hit and lasts so long that no one would think to try to do a remake. Indeed, who could equal or top the humor of this story as given us by this great cast? I can't imagine Clark Griswold as anyone other than Chevy Chase. Or Eddie played by anyone other than Randy Quaid. Or even the yuppie neighbors, Todd and Margo as played by Nicholas Guest and Julia Louis- Dreyfus, respectively. All the cast contribute to the humor, but it all revolves around Clark Griswold.

This is a wonderful laugh-out-loud comedy that never seems to wear out. Of course it might if one were to play it incessantly during the year, instead of holding it for the holidays.
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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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