Vacation: A reasonable enough getaway


The original Vacation is a classic. The new Vacation is definitely not a classic, but it’s actually not bad either. Believe me; I’m as surprised as you are.

Staring Ed Helms as grown up Rusty Griswold and Christina Applegate as his wife, Debbie, the new Vacation aims to recreate the family fun (and madness) that Rusty had on his own family vacation 30 years prior. As he explains right off the bat however, “This vacation will stand on its own, okay?”

I don’t know if I would exactly say this movie stands on its own, half the fun is finding the minor connections to the original, but you definitely don’t need to have seen the original Vacation to enjoy it.

If there was one thing this movie did right, it was establishing the freshest spin they could on the classic. As I said, the similarities in the movie make it good, but the differences make it watchable. For starters, the family dynamic has shifted slightly. As Rusty is quick to point out in another self-aware moment in the movie (something I’ve become quite fond of in comedy sequels since 22 Jump Street), last time there was a boy and a girl, and this time there are two boys.

It’s a minor change, but one that does the movie justice, with the spin being that the younger brother constantly bullies the older brother. Again, minor, but it brings a slightly new aspect to the movie, and after all, that is the real challenge in doing a remake or a sequel – paying due respect to the source material while at the same time differentiating yourself – it’s definitely not an easy task, but not an impossible one either.

Now to the question, “What is the best part of this movie?” The answer is simple – the supporting characters and cameos.

I actually haven’t seen so many great supporting characters and cameos in a movie since Anchorman 2, and while they aren’t exactly to that exponential level, they are definitely the defining characteristic in what could have been an easily forgettable movie.

I won’t ruin any of the surprises for you, but as you can see straight from the trailer, with people like Chevy Chase, Chris Hemsworth and Charlie Day making appearances, there’s no shortage of fun and laughter.

While I wouldn’t go as far as saying this is the best comedy of the summer, it’s absolutely not the worst. As a fan of the original Vacation, I understand if you’re a little hesitant to see it, but if you try not to compare it to the original too much, you should have a good enough time.

If you have never seen the original, go ahead and watch it too, you’ll have nothing to compare it to, so you should enjoy it even more. Vacation opens in certain theatres Wednesday, July 27, and opens wide July 29.