Movie Review: Vacation


If you are looking for plenty of great laughs and a sense of nostalgia, Vacation is definitely the movie to see. Vacation is sort of a throwback comedy reminiscent of its source movie, National Lampoon’s Vacation and other great 80’s comedy films. The movie can play as a sequel to the original, a reboot of the franchise, or even a remake because of the many similarities with the original.

In Vacation, Ed Helms plays Rusty Griswold, the son of everybody’s favorite vacationers Clark and Ellen Griswold (Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo). Rusty is now grown-up and has a family of his own, including his wife Debbie (Christina Applegate) and their two sons. Rusty overhears Debbie saying that she doesn’t enjoy their usually cabin vacation, so Rusty decides to change things up and take his family on a road trip from Chicago to Wally World, the place his family visited as a child.


The is when the movie really picks up steam and the laughs never seemingly stop. Every imaginable thing that can go wrong does and this generation of the Griswold family is little different from the last. From a bad decision in Arkansas to a suicidial tour guide on their boating adventure and even a crazed trucker following the family, the hilarity doesn’t stop. They even stop to visit Rusty’s sister Audrey (Leslie Mann) and her husband Stone, played perfectly by Chris Hemsworth. About the only thing missing is Uncle Eddie, the character Randy Quaid made iconic. But if you know Randy’s legal situation then it is obvious why he is missing from the film.

I like to think that Vacation is a sequel to the original and hopefully a reboot as well. It follows the story of the original classic and even features a great cameo from Chase and D’Angelo as the elder Griswolds. But I hope that it is a reboot of a franchise that can go on even longer. The first four movies were great and I hope that Vacation is just the start of another series of films. I only thing I hope is that unlike in the first four films, they don’t change the actor portraying Rusty. I know they changed the actors in the first series of films because of the difference in age of the kids in the films, but Ed Helms is the perfect guy to carry this franchise into the future if they choose to do so.


Daryl Karpinski, Jr.