Genre Grandeur – National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983) – Encore Review – MovieRob

For this month’s next review for Genre Grandeur – Travel Films here’s a review of National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983) by me.

Thanks again to Rebecca of Almost Ginger for choosing this month’s genre.

Next month’s genre has been chosen by Nick Rehak of French Toast Sunday and we will be reviewing our favorite Biographical Films.

Please get me your submissions by the 25th of May by sending them to

Try to think out of the box! Great choice Nick!

Let’s see what I thought of this movie:


“Hey, hey, easy kids. Everybody in the car. Boat leaves in two minutes… or perhaps you don’t want to see the second largest ball of twine on the face of the earth, which is only four short hours away? ” – Clark Griswald

Number of Times Seen – Between 5-10 times (cable, video, 28 Apr 2014 and 28 Apr 2021)

Link to original reviewHere

Brief Synopsis – A family takes a cross country trip from Chicago to an amusement park in California.

My Take on it – Hilarious film that still works even after close to 40 years.

Chevy Chase is superb in the lead and helps keep things so enjoyable from start to finish.

The various things that happen to this family on their journey is a combination of real life possibilities along with some perfectly times jokes that help accentuate the story.

As a father of 5, I’m very aware of the trivial aspects of taking a trip with the whole family and this film is able to show those issues also which helps make the story feel even more realistic and genuine by how it all plays out.

The relationships between Chase and his wife ,played by Beverly D’Angelo and the way that they interact with their two teenage kids, played by Anthony Michael Hall and Dan Barron is done so well and resonates with any family who takes a road trip together.

The story plays out really well and it’s easy to empathize with the frustrations of these characters as things progress.

Harold Ramis did a wonderful job directing this movie in such a fun and engaging way throughout which is based on the script by John Hughes who really knew how to make great films like this one throughout the 80’s.

The film is filled with lots of great cameos by recognizable actors and that adds to the story.

The film’s theme song – Holiday Road by Lindsay Buckingham is superb – check it out here:


MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – All the cast members had terrible experiences when it came to filming the scenes inside Walley World, where they rode all of the roller coasters and other rides. In the commentary, Chevy Chase mentions that many of the rides made him and the other cast members vomit, especially since they all had to ride them several times for each take. Dana Barron mentioned in the commentary that the coasters made her so sick, she had to take motion sickness pills, and would pass out on nearby benches between takes. Finally, Anthony Michael Hall mentions that in the shots on the roller coaster, where he looks scared, he wasn’t acting, his fear in those shots was genuine. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10) (no change from original review)


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To see my reviews of Oscar Winning Performances check out this link

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Here is a link to my movie index A-Z

2 thoughts on “Genre Grandeur – National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983) – Encore Review – MovieRob

  1. Pingback: Genre Grandeur April Finale – Top Ten Travel Movies – Almost Ginger | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1983 | MovieRob

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