National Lampoon's Vacation

dir. Harold Ramis

Series - Retrospective

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Hapless Griswold family patriarch Clark (Chevy Chase) decides to take the whole clan on a cross-country trek to the Wally World theme park in the first of the long running Vacation series.
Wanting to spend more time with his wife Ellen (Beverly D'Angelo) and kids (Anthony Michael Hall and Dana Barron), Griswold family patriarch Clark (Chevy Chase) decides to take the whole clan to the Wally World theme park for summer vacation. Purchasing a new vomit-green and wood-panelled station wagon for the cross-country trek, Clark is determined to have a great time, even if his teenaged offspring would rather be anywhere else. After a disturbing visit with Ellen's redneck relatives (Randy Quaid and Miriam Flynn), which gains the Griswolds a new passenger in Auntie Edna (Imogene Coca), the family gets back on the road, only for Clark to be distracted by a flirtatious blond in a Ferrari (model Christie Brinkley). Written by John Hughes and directed by SCTV veteran Harold Ramis — one of the central, if often under-recognized, figures in the reinvention of American comedy — Vacation is the second film to bear the National Lampoon banner, and like Animal House it takes a traditional scenario (road trip!) and infuses it with sex, drugs, and general zaniness (including, memorably, an incontinent dog).