Family Holidays CAN Be Fun!
I really enjoyed Vacation I just wished I hadn’t already seen it all before.
It’s a common problem in Hollywood with whoever makes the trailers desperate to show the best bits to entice viewers but this is really counter-productive.
This is especially true for comedies because everything is less funny the more you see it, right?
I’ve seen the trailer for Vacation a good number of times so some of its humour was at risk of being lost on me.
Take the Griswold springs section from the trailer as an example. Pretty hilarious when the camera pan back to reveal its a sewage dump instead of a hot spring. The line about the sulphur or the shot of Rusty (Ed Helms) gargling the water or Kevin (Steele Stebbins) throwing a syringe ‘dart’ at his brother are all funny.
This section in the film is almost, shot for shot, exactly the same as the trailer. It’s a shame because the film really is a good laugh but what are you left with story progression?
Well, it barely has that. Rusty takes his family on a trip to Walley World in attempt to rebuild a fracturing family. Does he succeed? Of course but there is no real development of character so one minute they are dysfunctional the next they are a happy family. It feels like a hollow victory.
As an example; the aforementioned Kevin mercilessly bullies his older brother James (Skyler Gisondo) who is so meek at defending himself that I couldn’t help but laugh whenever Kevin was on screen just from anticipating what he was going to say or do to his brother.
Yet that all changes half way through as James stands up for himself and the sibling rivalry just sort of… disappears. This complete 180 of character is even more strange given that James defends himself in such a pathetic way. The lack of any build up to Kevin’s behaviour change is jarring and out of place.
Still there’s a lot to like in this film such as the delightfully bizarre car that Rusty hires for the road trip I would challenge any one to not find it funny.
Having a button that ejects the bumper or makes the driver seat spin 360 whilst driving is amazing and the Korean sat-nav provides staple laughs throughout.
One of the funniest moments that hasn’t been ruined by the trailer is when a stalker-like truck driver finally catches up with the family. Kevin says “oh, so you aren’t a rapist then?” And the reply is so priceless its almost worth watching this story of a family road trip just for this moment.
Even though the trailer shows too much of itself it is still fun to watch – a but like a streaker at a football game!
Because of this; a sequel to Vacation would be eagerly anticipated. There is so much scope for this type abject failure in everything the family tries to do – the trailer just needs to stay the fuck at home though!
- That car!
- That trucker!
- That kid!
- It’s all in the trailer
- Change of heart for the kids
- No real sense that the family are pulling together