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6 Best Moments from National Lampoon’s Vacation Movie

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Title: National Lampoon’s Vacation

Release Date: 28/07/1983

Genres: Comedy, Adventure

Plot

National Lampoon’s Vacation is a classic comedy-adventure film that takes viewers on a wild and hilarious journey across America. Released on July 28, 1983, this movie quickly became a cult favorite and remains a beloved favorite to this day.

The film centers around the Griswold family, headed by the lovable but slightly clueless father, Clark Griswold, played brilliantly by Chevy Chase. Clark is determined to give his family the ultimate summer vacation, and what better way to do that than by embarking on a cross-country road trip to the fictional amusement park, Walley World, in California?

The Griswold family sets off from their hometown of Chicago in their trusty station wagon, ready for adventure. Accompanying Clark are his loving wife Ellen, played by Beverly D’Angelo, and their two children, the rebellious teenager, Audrey, and the curious youngest son, Rusty, played by Dana Barron and Anthony Michael Hall, respectively.

As the Griswolds hit the road, they encounter one calamity after another, turning what should have been a straightforward road trip into a series of comedic misadventures. From getting lost in a rough neighborhood to accidentally scraping the car with a partially clad woman, the family’s vacation starts off on a chaotic note.

Along the way, they meet various eccentric characters who add to the hilarity. The quirky Cousin Eddie, played by Randy Quaid, and his family provide both comic relief and a stark contrast to the somewhat normal Griswold family.

The interactions between the Griswolds and Cousin Eddie’s clan offer countless laughs and absurd situations. The film’s setting plays a crucial role in the story, as the Griswolds travel through a variety of iconic American locations.

From the vast and barren deserts of Arizona to the dazzling lights of Las Vegas, the scenery adds depth and excitement to the narrative. Each stop along the way brings the family face-to-face with new challenges and unexpected encounters.

Throughout the film, a theme of the importance of family and togetherness emerges. Despite the chaos and mishaps, the Griswold family remains united and resilient.

Their love for one another helps them navigate through the absurdity they encounter on their road trip. The film touches on the universal experiences and quirks of family life, making it relatable and endearing to audiences.

National Lampoon’s Vacation is filled with uproarious comedic moments, witty one-liners, and unforgettable characters that have stood the test of time. It brilliantly combines physical comedy with sharp writing, delivering laughs from start to finish.

The film’s iconic scenes, such as the family’s encounter with Christie Brinkley’s attractive character, have become ingrained in pop culture. As the Griswolds inch closer to their ultimate destination, Walley World, their resilience and determination are put to the test.

The journey becomes more and more outrageous, culminating in a climactic and unforgettable ending that viewers won’t want to miss. National Lampoon’s Vacation is a lighthearted comedy-adventure that takes viewers on a rollercoaster ride of laughter, chaos, and heartfelt moments.

With its relatable characters, hilarious mishaps, and an enduring theme of family, this film has become a timeless classic that continues to entertain audiences of all ages. So buckle up and get ready for a vacation you won’t soon forget!

6 Best Scenes from National Lampoon’s Vacation

1. Clark Griswold’s disastrous attempt at fixing the family car:

In this scene, Clark Griswold, along with his wife Ellen and their two children Rusty and Audrey, embark on their cross-country road trip to Walley World.

However, their excitement is quickly derailed when their 1979 family station wagon breaks down in the middle of nowhere. Determined to fix it himself, Clark opens the hood and starts tinkering with the engine, causing a series of comical mishaps.

He accidentally breaks the fan belt, gets covered in black engine oil, and even sets fire to the car. This scene is significant because it establishes Clark as a well-meaning, but bumbling and unlucky character.

It sets the tone for the rest of the film, showcasing the Griswold family’s chaotic and humorous journey. The car breakdown also becomes a recurring theme throughout the movie, symbolizing the numerous obstacles and challenges they face along the way.

2. The Griswold family’s hilarious encounter with a rude hotel clerk:

After a long day of driving, the Griswolds check into a shabby motel for the night.

They are greeted by a surly and uncooperative hotel clerk named Roy Walley, who is revealed to be Clark’s distant cousin. As Clark tries to negotiate a discount rate for the room, Roy dismisses his requests with sarcastic remarks and condescending behavior.

Despite Clark’s attempts to maintain his composure, he becomes increasingly frustrated and ends up losing his temper, engaging in a hilarious heated argument with Roy. This scene highlights the Griswold family’s unwavering optimism and their ability to find humor in frustrating situations.

Additionally, it illustrates the contrast between Clark’s idealistic vision of a perfect vacation and the harsh realities they encounter along the way. Clark’s confrontation with Roy sets the stage for their ongoing misadventures and challenges the Griswolds face throughout the film.

3. Clark’s disastrous attempt at recreating a scene from a famous movie while swimming in a motel pool:

While staying at a motel, Clark decides to surprise his wife Ellen by reenacting a romantic scene from the film “The Creature from the Black Lagoon.” He dons a scuba diving mask and emerges from the pool, intending to sweep Ellen off her feet.

However, his extravagant gesture fails miserably as he accidentally rips off her bathing suit, causing a commotion and embarrassing both of them. This scene adds to the comedic nature of the film, showcasing Clark’s well-intentioned but ill-fated attempts to create memorable moments for his family.

It also underscores the theme of expectation versus reality, as Clark’s grand gesture backfires and highlights the unpredictable nature of their vacation. The scene’s impact on the plot progression is relatively minor, serving primarily to entertain and further contribute to Clark’s overall character development as a loving, but flawed and clumsy patriarch.

4. The wild and chaotic visit to the fictional theme park “Walley World”:

After enduring numerous setbacks and hilarious misadventures, the Griswold family finally arrives at the highly anticipated destination of Walley World.

As they step foot inside the park, their excitement quickly turns to disappointment and confusion when they realize the park is shut down for maintenance. Determined not to let their dreams be crushed, Clark hatches a plan to break into the park and enjoy the attractions anyway.

The family sneaks past security, rides the roller coasters, and indulges in all the fun activities the park has to offer, all while evading park employees and security guards. This scene highlights the Griswold family’s undying optimism and their relentless pursuit of an unforgettable vacation.

It also portrays Clark as a dreamer who is willing to go to extreme lengths to provide his family with the adventure he promised them. The visit to Walley World represents both the climax and fulfillment of their journey, reinforcing the theme of perseverance in the face of obstacles.

5. The family’s encounter with a cheating couple at a campground:

During their journey, the Griswolds stop at a campground for the night.

Unbeknownst to them, the neighboring couple, Debbie and Ed, are engaging in an extramarital affair. As the night unfolds, Clark becomes suspicious of the couple’s behavior and attempts to uncover the truth.

He ends up accidentally exposing their secret by capturing it on film. The confrontation that follows is filled with chaos, as Debbie and Ed try to salvage their reputations while Clark and Ellen are left stunned and bewildered.

This scene adds a layer of complexity to the film, showcasing the imperfect marriages and relationships of those they encounter during their trip. It also serves as a reminder that even in the midst of their own family drama, the Griswolds are unknowingly affecting the lives of others.

The encounter with the cheating couple contributes to the film’s comedic and satirical edge, while also exploring the deeper themes of honesty, trust, and the consequences of one’s actions. 6.

The climactic scene where Clark finally reaches Walley World and realizes it’s closed:

In the final moments of the film, Clark and his family triumphantly arrive at Walley World, determined to have the time of their lives. As they excitedly make their way towards the entrance, they are met with disappointment when they see a closed sign and realize that their long-awaited destination is shut down for two weeks.

Clark, who has gone to great lengths to bring his family to Walley World, finds himself overwhelmed with frustration and disappointment. He stands in front of the closed gates, looking defeated and desperate.

This scene is a pivotal moment in the movie as it challenges Clark’s unwavering optimism and idealism. It shifts the tone from comedy to a bittersweet realization that sometimes life doesn’t go as planned and that even the most well-intentioned efforts can fall short.

The climactic scene not only provides a poignant ending to the Griswold’s vacation but also serves as a commentary on the unpredictability of life and the importance of finding joy in the journey, not just the destination.