Sunday, August 2, 2015

"Vacation (2015)"

Remaking a classic movie that so many people love and quote is a very risky idea. I tried to keep an open mind, figuring it wouldn't surpass the original but might be a fun new take on the story. The premise is that an adult Rusty, now an airline pilot, wants to take his family on a cross-country road trip to Walley World. His wife Debbie and sons Kevin and James do not want any part of this adventure. With a foreign made rental car called the Prancer standing in for the Family Truckster, the Griswolds hit the road.

Along the way, they stop at Debbie's alma mater Memphis State and visit her old sorority Tri-Pi. Rusty learns that his wife's sorority nickname was Debbie Do Anything. In Texas, they visit Audrey, who is now living on a ranch and married to a local weatherman played by Chris Hemsworth AKA Thor. There are a lot of shenanigans that happen in between Chicago and Walley World.

The good: Chevy Chase and Beverly D'Angelo make a cameo appearance near the end. Christina Applegate as Debbie is a great Ellen to Rusty's Clark. Walley World still looks like a cool place. I thought Rusty's scrapbook spanning all the various movies was a nice touch.

The bad: This movie is guilty of showing the majority of the funniest scenes in the trailer. The actors who played Rusty's sons were obnoxious, which makes it very difficult to enjoy the movie since they're in almost every scene; the younger brother mercilessly bullies the older one. Self-aware jokes like "This will be different. In the original vacation, there was a boy and a girl. We have two boys."

Stick to the Chevy Chase version.

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