VACATION (2015) was written and directed by Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley and stars Ed Helms, Leslie Mann, Christina Applegate, Skyler Gisondo, Steele Stebbins, Chris Hemsworth and Charlie Day with a special appearance from Beverly D’Angelo and Chevy Chase.
This 2015 comedy/reboot continues the story of the Griswolds but this time it all centers on the next generation. The movie follows a grown-up Rusty Griswold (Ed Helms) who surprises his wife, Debbie (Christina Applegate), and their two sons with a cross-country road trip back to America’s “favorite family fun park,” Walley World. Hoping to have some bonding time with his family, Rusty instead follows in his father’s footsteps and ends up getting them in one huge dilemma after another. It also can’t be a Vacation movie without a vehicle that stands out so Rusty ends up renting the non-sporty and non-economical 2015 Tartan Prancer which is pretty much the worst vehicle ever created.
The family loads up and the first problem they face is a psycho truck driver that they piss off that ends up showing up at the craziest times throughout the rest of the movie. There’s also a surprise cameo driving the big rig! They take a detour and end up at what they think is a natural spring but is actually raw sewage. Their rental car gets broken into and jacked up so they end up paying Rusty’s sister Aubrey (Leslie Mann) a visit that ends up becoming rather uncomfortable. Somehow they end up at Rusty’s parents, Clark (Chevy Chase) and Ellen (Beverly D’Angelo) to pay them a visit and to also borrow a car and guess which one they get! Ultimately, they arrive at Wallyworld that actually ends up being open this time where they not only have some fun but the surprising quags continue to pop up that finally allows the family to bond and that’s exactly what Rusty had been wanting all along.
Okay, even though this 2015 comedy reboot/continuation isn’t the best entry into the franchise, it definitely isn’t the worse. The story was fun but it was pretty much an updated version of the 1983 classic with a few stops added. All of the characters were fun to follow and I thought Ed Helms and Christina Applegate did a really good job with their characters Rusty and Debbie. Debbie also ends up having a few raunchy surprises of her own! The movie also had plenty of cameos featuring familiar faces that were a lot of fun as well. This new Griswold journey takes this new generation on completely different stops which was really funny at times. It was also really nice to see Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo reprise their iconic roles as Clark and Ellen. I mean, you can’t have a Vacation movie without these two!
The packaging comes with a slipcover. The front features the artwork you see up top and the back includes movie details, some images and list of special features. The Blu-ray disc has a flat black color to it and the DVD disc is plain chrome with no artwork. Inserting each disc, the menu screens were simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for the high-definition disc were crisp and clear and the picture and sound quality for the standard-definition disc were really good.
Bottom line is, Vacation ended up being a pretty fun watch but nothing close to the original Vacation or Christmas Vacation. The movie relies heavily on crude and raunchy humor and adult themes which will turn a lot of viewers off but if you can stand this kind of comedy then you’ll enjoy the watch. The story and all of the characters for this 2015 comedy delivered some hilarious side-splitting humor that is geared toward a more mature audience but it also tries a little too hard at times. It’s pretty much for the people who grew up watching these movies. This Blu-ray Combo Pack releases on November 3rd and is worth a watch, especially if you’ve seen all the others. Remember, it’s not even close to being the best but it’s definitely not the worse entry in the franchise either.
Distributor: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
Run Time: 99 Minutes
Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen (2:40:1)
Blu-ray Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 English, French and Spanish
DVD Video: Widescreen Presentation Region 1
DVD Audio: Dolby Digital
Subtitles: English SDH, French and Spanish
Special Features: Good Stuff! This Blu-ray Combo Pack includes a number of featurettes that take the viewer behind-the-scenes and on location. There’s also a fun gag reel and deleted scenes that are the standout as far as the extras go.
- Return to Walley World
- The Griswold Odyssey
- Gag Reel
- Deleted Scenes
- Digital HD Copy