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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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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:

Vacation See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,333,358, 31 July 1983

Gross USA:

$61,399,552

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$61,399,552
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

Many bits in the film were improvised, including Clark's dance with his sandwich, Clark's send-off to Aunt Edna, and Rusty's chugging of the beer. See more »

Goofs

In the scene when Ellen says that Aunt Edna is dead, in the first cut you can see Edna blinking while her eyelids are shut. See more »

Quotes

Clark Griswald: So, this is the old homestead, eh?
Cousin Eddie: Yeah. I don't know for how much longer, though. The bank's been after me like flies on a rib roast.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the credits, you see snapshots of group photos of where and who the Griswalds met on the vacation. The last photo shows you how they got home, on a plane. See more »

Alternate Versions

When aired on Comedy Central, these scenes were deleted and/or altered.
  • When Clark asks a pimp for directions and he tells Clark a dirty response was cut.
  • Clark and Ellen's conversation in the car about what they did during a trip to Florida in college was cut and just lead to Clark saying "the damn wheel's all screwed up".
  • Ellen coming out of the shower now shows her buttoning up her shirt where in the video release, her breasts were visible, but not here.
  • The scene where Dale shows Rusty his stack of nudie books "this high" was cut, as was the scene where Vickie showed Audrey her shoe box of weed, including the part where Vickie gives Audrey a few joints before letting her in the Truckster.
  • After Clark forgot to untie Dinky from the bumper and the cop found out, his response of "explain this you son of a bitch" was changed to "explain this you sedistic bum".
  • The scene where Clark and the family pull into a cafe that delivers food to the car and Clark takes the tray, hits it against the window and drops it onto the pavement was cut.
  • When Clark trots through the desert, the watcher's comment of "what an asshole" was changed to "what an airhead".
  • Clark's speech of the trip to Walley World was now a quest was altered to remove the words 'fuck' and 'assholes' and 'shit'.
  • The scene where they have just left Chicago and Clark sings "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" was cut and just lead to the scene at the gas station where Clark tried to find the gas tank.
  • And the original song that plays whenever Christine Brinkley drove by was changed to "I'm so excited" in all encounters, except when the family is eating at a picnic and Clark spots her at a truck stop.
  • When aired on Fox Family, all profanities including 'hell' and damn' were removed and some scenes not in the above version were still intact and some were intact but altered.
See more »


Soundtracks

Dancin' 'cross the U.S.A.
Written and Performed by Lindsey Buckingham
Produced by Richard Dashut
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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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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