National Lampoon's Vacation
National Lampoon's Vacation (1983)

The first film in the Vacation comedy franchise stars Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold, an ad exec who becomes consumed with taking his family cross-country to Wally World, a California amusement park. Less a vacation than a descent into a… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Genre: Comedy
Release Date: July 29, 1983
DVD Release Date: August 27, 1997
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Critic Score: 93% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Blessed by a brilliantly befuddled star turn from Chevy Chase, National Lampoon's Vacation is one of the more consistent -- and thoroughly quotable -- screwball comedies of the 1980s.

Gary Arnold
Washington Post

Half-baked but occasionally hilarious, National Lampoon's Vacation gets a reasonable amount of mileage out of depicting the disaster-prone journey of a "typical" family of four, the Griswolds of suburban Chicago.

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Richard Rayner
Time Out

The result is not so much a comedy about American values as a 2,500 mile skid on a banana skin. The visual gags come thick and fast, and are about as subtly signposted as the exit markers on a freeway.

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Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing

It's a pleasant diversion with a few memorable bits and a likable cast, but true comic invention is hard to locate in the meandering screenplay by the late John Hughes.

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Variety Staff

National Lampoon's Vacation is an enjoyable trip through familiar comedy landscapes.

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Janet Maslin
New York Times

The result is a confident humor and throwaway style that helps sustain the laughs -- of which there are quite a few.

Jo Berry
Radio Times

Director Harold Ramis, who went on to make Groundhog Day, keeps the silliness coming at a fast and furious pace.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

Despite plenty of gross-out gags and dumb slapstick bits, the careful viewer can occasionally detect some acrid and original satire in this 1983 film.

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Eddie Harrison

...Hughes and Ramis make a decent fist of finding humour in everyday situations...

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Ralph Novak
People Magazine

Thanks largely to Chevy Chase's zaniness and comic timing this is a very funny movie.

More reviews for National Lampoon's Vacation

Flixster Audience Score: 85% Flixster User Reviews
KJ Proulx
"Vacation" is the dream film that everyone wanted from Chevy Chase (especially me). He livens any film that he is in, from his facial expressions to… More
Chris Weber
Directed by Harold Ramis, scripted by John Hughes, and starring Chevy Chase, this film is essentially one of the all-time greatest screwball comedies. That… More
Lucas Martins
This is for sure one of the most remember and one of the comedy movies that is the characteristic of the 80's American humour.
Phil Hubbs
MAJOR blast from the past here and it still holds up really well today despite being really seriously dated. The appearance is almost historical with all those… More
Alex roy
National Lampoon's Vacation is a very good comedy film that is one of the finest comedies of the 80's. With a great cast lead by Chevy Chase. The film… More
Tyler Robertson
Easily one of the best comdies ever made. This was made back when comedies were taken seriously, not on the actors in it, but the overall plot. Nowadays,… More