The Vacation franchise has had its ups and downs. The first one was good. The Christmas one was good. I don’t remember the others. I’m pretty sure they sucked. But after the franchise was dead and buried, the dudes who made the underrated Horrible Bosses were like, “Hey, let’s just go back to what made the movies work in the first place!” The result is Vacation, starring Ed Helms as Rusty Griswold. It’s odd that, even though I’m somewhat of an Ed Helms fan, I always cringe when I see his name attached to something. Hes just a bad luck charm for movies.
And this one is no different. It’s just… weird. And not a charming, Grand Budapest Hotel kind of weird. It’s weird to me that they made this movie. I don’t comprehend the choices they make. The movie is essentially a compilation of running jokes, but none of them are funny. The teenage boy keeps running into a girl he likes, but it never explains why they keep bumping into each other, even though there’s a fairly easy explanation present the whole time. Chris Hemsworth keeps making… faucet-based metaphors? Helms and Christina Applegate keep trying to have kinky sex and are constantly interrupted. One of Hemsworth’s steers is a cannibal. These are just the ones that occur constantly, but trust me when I say that every single joke in this movie happens more than once.
Now, don’t get me wrong, there are a few things I like about this movie. Keegan-Michael Key and Chris Hemsworth are gifts from God. Charlie Day does an excellent job with the mediocre material he’s given. There’s a really funny joke involving Nick Kroll, Tim Heidecker, Michael Peña, and Kaitlin Olson as cops from different states patrolling the Four Corners. There are actually enough genuine laughs in this movie to keep you in the theater, but just barely.
Ultimately, my main problem with the movie is that I don’t care. I don’t care that Helms and Applegate’s marriage is in shambles. I don’t care that the kid has a new girlfriend. I don’t care that Helms is jealous of the pilot guy, or Keegan-Michael Key, or his father, or… yeah, that’s another problem. Rusty is a shitty guy. As sympathetic as they try to make him, he’s just not fun to watch.
So yeah, overall, I’m giving it a C-. I wouldn’t recommend you see it. But I do recommend you leave a like if you liked this review, follow my blog if you super duper liked it, leave a comment if you’ve got something to say, and stay tuned for some more cool reviews in the very near future.