“Christmas Vacation” stands as a Christmas favorite. It’s played on TV frequently over this season. I’ve seen the edited version a couple of times so knew what to expect; that expectation, of course, is with Chevy Chase I know I’ll get a few laughs.
And I did. Clark Griswold, our hero, banks on getting his Christmas bonus so he can put in a pool for his family. He’s presented as the consummate family man in a dysfunctional family. He’s supposedly Everyman, getting stuck by the man, trying to make a go of it in the midst of crazy relatives, etc. etc.
And we laugh to see all his follies and foibles. The thousands of Christmas lights stapled on the house. The in-laws and their quirks. Cousin Eddy, played by Randy Quaid, drives us all batty. And we laugh some more.
But that’s it really. I cannot imagine you haven’t seen this film, but if you haven’t it is exactly what you’d expect. A comedy that deals in slap-stick but goes no further. Yes, Clark is a family man and he attempts to help others (see Eddy and his family), but he also overly frustrated and it’s primarily about materialism (see family pool).
If you’re having a Blue Christmas and needing to laugh at sometimes crude humor, this is the film for you. If you ‘re looking for a comedy that shows the true meaning of Christmas—or at least gets closer to the mark—you should check out “Nativity!”
So, “Christmas Vacation” (a film chosen by my readers, get’s my lowest rating. It has little to add to the true meaning of Christmas.
Next in the docket: “Meet Me in St. Louis”