Written by / 2/25/2013 / No comments / , , , , , , ,

NATIONAL LAMPOON'S CHRISTMAS VACATION

year: 1989 rating: ***
The third VACATION and the second written by story creator John Hughes, CHRISTMAS is more of a reboot than a sequel, starting everything from scratch for a new generation: as if there were no other trips beforehand...

Daughter Audrey is more bitter and frustrated than ever, and somehow Rusty, now with brown hair instead of blonde, is thirteen-years-old again...

The kids and mom don’t amount to much anyway, merely witnessing Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase at the tail-end of his comedic peak) and his clumsy misadventures as the host of an overcrowded holiday home: including both sets of in-laws. The only real input for family’s sake is Randy Quaid’s white trash Cousin Eddie: A scene-stealer in the first film given his own fifteen minute layover, Eddie becomes Clark’s partner-in-crime. But Quaid seems to be doing an exaggerated imitation, turning Eddie into an over-the-top comic book character. Meanwhile, Clark's reactionary disdain for his cousin-in-law's gross-out personality becomes redundant, especially after the first ten times.

Chevy Chase & Randy Quaid
Most of the film's spoken jokes are limp and somewhat forced. The funniest moments rely on physical gags: the fate of a curious cat; an enraged squirrel; and Christmas house lights that refuse to work.

The direction, including handheld camera and intentionally awkward moments, flows pretty well with the John Hughes script that, as usual, mixes semi dark comedy with pathos and hijinx. While the soundtrack can be spooky and ominous, befitting what’s going on in Clark’s troubled mind, successfully contrasting with the old fashion Norman Rockwell house and backdrop.

Touted as a Holiday classic, this is really a hit-and-miss outing. The most family oriented Lampoon venture keeps some of the blue humor hidden yet it’s implied throughout.

Glimpses of a brooding Clark at work in the office, hoping for a bonus check to buy a swimming pool, and the intrusion of a put-upon yuppie couple who live next door – victims of whatever Clark’s doing outside – are distractions to get us out of the crowded house. Yet with these sporadic reminders of real life, we often forget we’re on vacation.
Share This Post :
Tags : , , , , , , ,

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

All Time Popular

Featured Post

MARLON BRANDO AND GEORGE C. SCOTT IN 'THE FORMULA'

Title: THE FORMULA Year: 1980 Rating: ** Most cult films start out generally unknown and unsuccessful till gaining a dedicated following but...

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM
Movie Reviews, Interviews, Articles and Pop Culture from White Heat to Blue City

RIP ACTOR KEN HUTCHISON

TOTAL HITS

Popular Trending

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE
RANDOM QUOTE: "A monkey in silk is still a monkey." Marlon Brando, Zapata

NEO NOIR & FILM NOIR CINEMA

FAVORITES SHORTLIST

1)OTLEY 2)HELL IS A CITY 3)ROBBERY 4)CANYON PASSAGE 5)THE FEARMAKERS 6)VIOLENT SATURDAY 7)HOT CARS 8)JUNGLE STREET 9)ANATOMY OF A MURDER 10)THE CROWDED SKY 11))THE MAN FROM LARAMIE 12)SHARKS' TREASURE 13)SWEENEY TWO 14)RAIDERS FROM BENEATH THE SEA 15)HARDCORE 16)THE SYSTEM 17)WHITE HEAT 18)AL CAPONE 19)TENTACLES 20)FALLEN ANGEL 21)NIGHT CREATURES 22)CURSE OF THE DEMON 23)ASH WEDNESDAY 24)KILLER FISH 25)AIR PATROL 26)DUEL IN THE JUNGLE 27)EASY LIVING 28)WILLIAM CONRAD'S BRAINSTORM 29)FRENZY 30)THE ROARING TWENTIES 1)DANA ANDREWS 2)JAMES CAGNEY 3)JACK NICHOLSON 4)MARLON BRANDO 5)STANLEY BAKER 1)VIRGINIA MAYO 2)SUE LYON 3)GENE TIERNEY 4)MERRY ANDERS 5)FAYE DUNAWAY DIRECTORS 1)JACQUES TOURNEUR 2)RICHARD FLEISCHER 3)STANLEY KUBRICK 4)ORSON WELLES 5)OTTO PREMINGER 6)JOHN LANDIS 7)JOHN GUILLERMAN 8)VAL GUEST 9)JOHN CARPENTER 10)MICHAEL WINNER

BRITISH NEW WAVE CINEMA

RARITIES AND EXPLOITATION

HAMMER HORROR & THRILLER

Popular This Month

WESTERN GENRE REVIEWS

CINEMA OF DANA ANDREWS

PEAKING INTO THE SIXTIES

KICKING IN THE EIGHTIES

TALES AND REFLECTIONS

REVVING THE SEVENTIES

FOR HORROR MOVIE REVIEWS


Reviews for the British series The Sweeney

Most Popular Last Year

RETURN TO THE HOMEPAGE