Notice: Undefined index: slug in /var/www/wp-includes/class-wp-theme-json.php on line 1440

Notice: Undefined index: slug in /var/www/wp-includes/class-wp-theme-json.php on line 1440

Notice: Undefined index: slug in /var/www/wp-includes/class-wp-theme-json.php on line 1440
Connect with us

Bandwagon Nerds

BWN Nerd Review: National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)

The Nerds are back and today they are providing you with an exciting review of…. National Lampoon’s Vacation! See what the trio thought of the 80’s comedy cult favorite.

Published

on

National Lampoons Vacation Movie Review Chairshot Edit

The Nerds are back and today they are providing you with an exciting review of…. National Lampoon’s Vacation! See what the trio thought of the 80’s comedy cult favorite.

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Nerd Review!  Every week the Nerds give you their take on a different cult classic from the Nerdosphere.  This week the guys review the 1983’s classic National Lampoon’s Vacation

The Flick:  National Lampoon’s Vacation

What’s it About:  The Griswold family embarks on a cross country vacation to the west coast theme park Walley World.  Led by loveable patriarch Clark, the family finds itself in one misadventure after another as everything that can goes wrong, does.

Metacritic Score: 55 

The Nerds’ Take on National Lampoon’s Vacation

Dave:  In 1983, the world was introduced to The Griswolds. Suffice it to say, we are all better off having been introduced to them. 1983’s Vacation was the first movie in a series of now five films that focused on the misadventures, mishaps, and mayhem of Clark W. Griswold and his family. While none of the sequels (with the possible exception of Christmas Vacation) could ever quite measure up to the original, all the movies followed the same general formula: Clark was always determined to involve his family in a vacation, holiday, or adventure; things would invariably go wrong but, in the end, everything would always work out. Along the way, some of the funniest moments in movie history would take place and this was especially true in the first installment of the series.

In Vacation, Clark, played by Chevy Chase, is taking his family on a vacation from Chicago to Wally World (which is actually Six Flags’ Magic Mountain) in California. He has his wife Ellen, played by Beverly D’Angelo, his son Rusty, played by a very young Anthony Michael Hall, and his daughter Audrey (Dana Barron) with him. Clark has the trip meticulously planned out as the clan gathers in the Family Truckster for the voyage. But, things do not go as planned as the Griswolds become lost in St. Louis, have a hilarious outing in Kansas with Ellen’s sister Catherine and her husband Eddie (played fantastically by the magnificent Randy Quaid), end up having to transport Aunt Edna to Arizona, get stranded in the desert, get extorted by crooked mechanics, and have one misadventure after another. Wedged in between all of this, is one of the most iconic moments in 80’s movie history…the introduction of super-model Christie Brinkley, who pulls up alongside Clark in a red Ferrari. Clark’s sporadic, but memorable, encounters with Brinkley form some of the best moments in the movie, especially when Clark comes extremely close to having an affair in a hotel pool with Brinkley. The scene showcases how clueless Clark is, even though, as usual, he comes out of the situation unscathed.

Eventually, and despite Aunt Edna’s death along the way (and we don’t really need to discuss poor Dinky), the family reaches Wally World only to discover it has been closed for renovations. Clark, holding onto his sanity by a slim thread already, loses it and forces a security guard (John Candy), at gunpoint, to start the rides in the park and accompany he and his family onto several of the rides. A SWAT team intervention later leads to some understanding between Clark and Roy Wally, the owner of Wally World, and everything turns out OK as The Griswolds get to experience almost all that Wally World has to offer in the end.

Classic does not really do Vacation justice. In what is likely Chevy Chase’s best performance, one cannot help but root for Clark to not only get his family to Wally World, but to overcome all the craziness along the way. The performances of everyone involved are classic and timeless. There are so many memorable and funny moments in Vacation, that it is easy to lose track of all of them. In the end Vacation kicked off an enormously successful franchise that would see The Griswolds become an entrenched piece of Americana. If you are one of the few who, somehow, have never seen the original Vacation, then I envy you as you are in for a real treat.

Dave’s Rating: 5/5

DPP: The Griswolds are an iconic family in the National Lampoon movie genre, and Vacation is the one that started it all!  Many families can relate to bad experiences with road trips, and this takes family road trips gone wrong to the extreme.  Clark Griswold (Chevy Chase) wants to take his family to Wally World, “America’s Favorite Family Fun Park.”  Looking to spend more time as a family, instead of flying, he wants to make the drive from Chicago to southern California, making additional stops to see the sites along the way.  The trip immediately starts off with problems when his brand new car is supposedly not available, and he is forced to take the “Family Truckster” station wagon, as his car was already crushed.  During a stop to visit their cousins, they are forced to take their elderly Aunt Edna and her dog on their trip and drop her off at her son’s house in Phoenix.  At every stop, nothing but tragedy ensues.  During a picnic, they find out that the dog peed on the food.  Clark forgets to untie the dog from the bumper and causes his accidental death.  A crash in the desert and an extorting mechanic has them broke before they make the Grand Canyon.  Aunt Edna dies as well, and the family ties her to the roof on a lawn chair.  And we can’t forget the regular meeting with Clark and a beautiful blonde (Christie Brinkley) driving a Ferrari, who passes by on a few occasions, appearing to flirt with Clark.  They eventually meet up for a brief skinny dip at one of the motel stops, where Clark screams because of the freezing cold water, waking up everyone in the motel, being discovered by the family.  Despite all the downfalls, the Griswolds finally make it to Wally World, finding it to be closed for the next two weeks for repairs.  Clark goes mad, buys a BB gun, and poses it as a real gun to force the security guard (John Candy) to take them all the rides at the park.  Eventually the SWAT team shows up to take them all down.  Describing the tragedy the fell the family along the trip, they convince the owner of Wally World to let them go for a somewhat happy ending.  While this movie obviously takes things to the extreme, the Griswold family blunders in some cases are very relatable to regular families.  Whether it’s the crazy cousins, aunts, or uncles, or accidents that happen during trips, you can feel for the family whose patriarch just wants to get closer to his family, only to see it blow up in his face.

DPP’s Rating: 4/5

Patrick:  I liked this movie growing up, but I gained a new appreciation for it when I had a family of my own.  I totally get the character of Clark W. Griswold, now.  I feel every ounce of his determination to pull off the perfect family vacation.  I am his relentless idealism in the face of travel tragedy, finding any nugget of joy to share with his children.  Just jumped the Family Truckster fifty feet into a desert?  Hey, just look at those mountains.  That unflagging spirit masterfully played by Chevy Chase is completely relatable.  All this guy wants to do is have a memorable, meaningful vacation with his family.  Who can’t relate to that?  And who amongst us, hasn’t had a trip just go terribly wrong?

That’s what really makes Vacation work so darn well.  Every family has a bad vacation story.  Every family has lost their luggage or been stuck in the back of the car with their annoying sibling or gotten lost.  This movie is funny because by golly it is real.  This movie is even more relatable because the cast is just so darn good.  Beyond Chase you have Beverly D’Angelo, an underrated actress in my humble opinion, as Ellen Griswold.  She and Chase have terrific chemistry on the screen, she’s a terrific counter to Clark’s stubborn determination (and when he becomes quite the jerk) and yet supports him when the chips are down.  A very young Anthony Michael Hall plays Rusty the wisecracking early teen who lives to antagonize.  Finally you have Dana Baron as Audrey the younger sister who challenges her brother the way any sibling would.  All four know how to play off one another and really keeps the movie going forward.  There are a host of terrific cameos as well.  Most people immediately think of Randy Quaid in his role as Cousin Eddie, but for me it is John Candy as the Walley World security guard who brings a smile to my face as he tries to mollify an unhinged Clark throughout Walley World.

Surprisingly, I was impressed at how well Vacation holds up.  While there are some dated jokes, I did not find myself cringing and thinking that the all of the gags would not fly today.  At its core, John Hughes’ script and Harold Ramis’ directing gives us an edgy, yet still pretty whole some comedy that viewers can appreciate.  We pull for the Griswolds because we have all been there.  We want them to see the damn moose, and I don’t know that anyone blames Clark for getting that roller coaster ride.  Not my favorite of the series, but still highly enjoyable.  Definitely worth the time to watch more than once.

Patrick’s Rating:  3.75/5

Nerds Rating for National Lampoon’s Vacation:  4.25/5


Don’t forget to catch this week’s edition of…..
BANDWAGON NERDS!

Click here to listen as the Nerds review the greatest musical acts ever!

Bandwagon Nerds


Powered by RedCircle


Let us know what you think on social media @ChairshotMedia and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!

Bandwagon Nerds

Bandwagon Nerds #160: Changes Bob Iger Style

Published

on

Bandwagon Nerds

Patrick O’Dowd, PC Tunney, and Rey Cash revisit the leadership changes at Disney and how Bob Iger has already made his mark in the company.  Plus, after slow week in the trailer park last episode, the Nerds react to five, yes FIVE, trailer releases.  Finally, Patrick and PC Tunney review the Apple TV movie, Spirited starring Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds.

  • @WrestlngRealist
  • @AttitudeAgg
  • @itsReyCash
  • @PCTunney
  • @ViolentAesop
  • @therealcplatt
  • @ChairshotMedia

About Bandwagon Nerds

Join Patrick O’Dowd, David Ungar, PC Tunney and Rey Cash as they keep everyone up on all things nerd, and maybe add some new nerds along the way. It’s the Bandwagon Nerds Podcast!

About the Chairshot Radio Network

Created in 2017, the Chairshot Radio Network presents you with the best in wrestling and wrestling crossover podcasts, including POD is WAR, Women’s Wrestling Talk, The #Miranda Show, Badlands’ Wrestling Mount Rushmores, The Outsider’s Edge, DWI Podcast, Bandwagon Nerds, the Greg DeMarco Show, 3 Man Weave, Five Rounds, Turnbuckle Talk, Suwama’s Station, The Reaction and more! You can find these great shows each week at theChairshot.com and through our distribution partners, including podcasting’s most popular platforms.


The Chairshot Radio Network
Your home for the hardest hitting podcasts and radio shows!

All Shows On Demand

Listen on your favorite platform!

iTunes  |  iHeart Radio  |  Google Play  |  Spotify
Listen, like, subscribe, and share!


Bandwagon Nerds Mario


Powered by RedCircle


Let us know what you think on social media @ChairshotMedia and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
Continue Reading

Bandwagon Nerds

Bandwagon Nerds #159: Disney’s Bold Move

Published

on

Bandwagon Nerds
Bandwagon Nerds #159: Disney's Bold Move

This week Dave, Patrick and PC Tunney give their thoughts regarding the huge news out of Disney that Bob Chapek is out as CEO and has been replaced by the returning Bob Iger.  What does it mean for the struggling company and will Iger be able to right the ship?  Plus with the O’Dowds back from Disneyworld, the Little O’Dowd crashes the show to share his Disneyworld experience.  Finally, the Nerds finish their review of Locke and Key Season 3!

  • @WrestlngRealist
  • @AttitudeAgg
  • @itsReyCash
  • @PCTunney
  • @ViolentAesop
  • @therealcplatt
  • @ChairshotMedia

About Bandwagon Nerds

Join Patrick O’Dowd, David Ungar, PC Tunney and Rey Cash as they keep everyone up on all things nerd, and maybe add some new nerds along the way. It’s the Bandwagon Nerds Podcast!

About the Chairshot Radio Network

Created in 2017, the Chairshot Radio Network presents you with the best in wrestling and wrestling crossover podcasts, including POD is WAR, Women’s Wrestling Talk, The #Miranda Show, Badlands’ Wrestling Mount Rushmores, The Outsider’s Edge, DWI Podcast, Bandwagon Nerds, the Greg DeMarco Show, 3 Man Weave, Five Rounds, Turnbuckle Talk, Suwama’s Station, The Reaction and more! You can find these great shows each week at theChairshot.com and through our distribution partners, including podcasting’s most popular platforms.


The Chairshot Radio Network
Your home for the hardest hitting podcasts and radio shows!

All Shows On Demand

Listen on your favorite platform!

iTunes  |  iHeart Radio  |  Google Play  |  Spotify
Listen, like, subscribe, and share!


Bandwagon Nerds Mario


Powered by RedCircle


Let us know what you think on social media @ChairshotMedia and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
Continue Reading

Sports

Entertainment

Sports Entertainment

Buy A Chairshot T-Shirt!

Chairshot Radio Network

Trending