Last night I watched Vacation, the latest in the National Lampoon vacation series. In this installment it's Rusty Griswold who takes his family on a cross country car trip, trying to recapture the memories of the one he took when he was a kid.
I've always loved the National Lampoon vacation movies with Chevy Chase. They're sophomoric, vulgar, stupid, and hysterical. The perfect laugh out loud escape movie.But this one made me squirm a little too much in an icky way.
The cast was very likable, especially Christina Applegate, who I've been a fan of for ages. But I found Ed Helms's dumb dad bit much more annoying than Chevy Chase's (who makes a great appearance near end). The movie definitely had its big belly laugh and fun groan moments. I was especially fond of the retreading of several gags, including the hot chick in the convertible scene, but with a twist.
Maybe there were too many sexually themed jokes. And I don't mean sly, clever innuendos, but club-the-audience-over-the-head jokes that only someone living in a cave all their life would not get. I like sexual jokes, but this movie seemed to rely far too much on them and many were beaten to death.
But the ickiest moment for me was near the end and involved a big rig driver played by Norman Reedus, who currently plays Daryl Dixon on The Walking Dead. Let me just say that pedophilia, even a veiled wink toward it in humor, does not entertain me in the least. This was probably the only sexual joke that was subtle, but by far the most disturbing. Adults preying on children is not a laughable moment.
It's kind of how I felt about The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt show trying to get laughs out of women kidnapped and held for years by a maniac. Some things you just don't joke about.
Maybe I'm finally too old to appreciate this kind of humor. I'd like to think not. I'd like to think my funny bone is intact, but maybe it's grown a social conscience.