Friday, April 21, 2006

This Holiday is no Picnic

In another Hughes and Candy pairing, this time about family vacations, we see Chet Ripley (Candy) take his family on a vacation to a sleepy lake town. Chet feels that by taking his two teenage boys, Buck and Ben, and wife Connie out into nature they will be able to have one last great family vacation.

Little does Chet know that just as they are beginning to enjoy their lake house, and the quiet his brother-in-law Roman (Dan Aykroyd) is on his way to crash the party. Roman is the polar opposite of Chet; fast talking, big business, slick back hair, fancy cars, and he doesn't really have a relationship with his two girls. Although Roman is constantly trying to one-up Chet and win over Buck and Ben with fancy speed boats the audience learns that the reason he crashed the Ripley's vacation is because he wouldn't have been able to afford his own.

Other than the constant battle between Chet and Roman, who are both played by extremely funny actors, there are other small storylines that occur around them. Chet's oldest son falls in love for the first time, Roman's girls get trapped in an abandoned mine, Roman's financial troubles surface etc. Some of it seems to be just thrown in, and its not really cohesive with the major plot.

As I re-watched this movie it made me sad, as John Candy was one of my favorites growing up he seemed to have to work a lot harder in this film to get the jokes out. Although this movie came out five years before he died, you can see some of the early stages of how his lifestyle would effect his work. It also was very similar to another Candy movie "Summer Rental" that came out two years before this.

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