Vegas Vacation (1997)

2.0 Overall Score
Story: 2/10
Acting: 2/10
Visuals: 2/10

Christie Brinkley cameo

Little is funny in the film

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Vegas Vacation

Studio:  Jerry Weintraub Productions

Genre(s):  Comedy

Release Date(s):  February 14, 1997

MPAA Rating: PG


Lovin’ You Is Easy Cause Your Beautiful

The Griswolds just haven’t learned their lesson.  Despite failed family fun in the past, the Griswolds are headed to Las Vegas…and of course running into Cousin Eddie (Randy Quaid) and his family.  Clark (Chevy Chase) has dreams of hitting it big.  Ellen (Beverly D’Angelo) finds herself romanced by Wayne Newton.  Rusty (Ethan Embry) discovers he could be the luckiest man alive.  Audrey (Marisol Nichols) spends some quality time with her dancer cousin Vicki (Shae D’Lyn).  The Griswolds are hitting Vegas, and Vegas is hitting back!

Directed by Stephen Kessler, Vegas Vacation is a comedy sequel to National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation from 1989.  The movie was rated PG and received poor reviews and a weak box office return.


Erotic dancing…rated PG version

National Lampoon’s Vacation was great.  National Lampoon’s European Vacation wasn’t…but had moments.  National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation was once again great…Vegas Vacation turned into the worst of the lot.

I struggled to find something humorous in Vegas Vacation.  The writing is poor, sloppy, and uninspired.  It doesn’t feel like there was much effort put into Vegas Vacation and the only good joke was a callback to the original Vacation with a cameo by Christie Brinkley as the “hot girl” again.


Anthony Michael Hall would never win a car!

Chevy Chase’s comedy stylings haven’t aged well, but I do still enjoy Beverly D’Angelo as his frustrated wife.  Like the previous Vacations, Rusty and Audrey were recast and this time played by Ethan Embry and Marisol Nichols.  Wayne Newton plays himself and the movie features the last film role of Sid Caesar (in an appearance that mirrors his comedy partner Imogene Coca in the original Vacation).  I was kind of done with Randy Quaid and the return of Cousin Eddie was unnecessary (though it made perfect sense Eddie would end up in Vegas).

Vegas Vacation is a lazy movie attempting to capitalize on a franchise.  The movie dropped ties to National Lampoon and John Hughes…I don’t know that it would have mattered.  The failure of the movie essentially killed the franchise.  Cousin Eddie returned in a TV sequel to Christmas Vacation called National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation 2:  Cousin Eddie’s Island Adventure in 2003 (which managed to be worse than this), and the Vacation franchise was relaunched in 2015 with Vacation.

Related Links:

National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)

National Lampoon’s European Vacation (1985)

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation 2:  Cousin Eddie’s Island Adventure (2003)

Vacation (2015)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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