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Overall Rating

Awesome: 28.26%
Worth A Look: 10.87%
Average: 15.22%
Pretty Bad: 10.87%
Total Crap34.78%

2 reviews, 34 user ratings

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Great Outdoors, The
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by Chris Parry

"In John Hughes terms, this was the beginning of the end."
1 stars

Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Annette Bening and written by the guy who brought us Ferris Bueller's Day Off and The Breakfast Club. Man, were there ever high hopes when this one opened. Alas, John Hughes was about to enter his second phase of career advancement... the family comedy phase. And those of us who held him as a generational icon would never be the same.

It had been the Family Vacation movies that had helped Hughes cut his teeth in film, and hey, they didn't suck back then. Given the chance to stray fro the formula, Hughes gave us of the 80's what would become known as "teen-angst" flicks - a genre not touched upon since way back in the days Of Rebel Without A Cause.

Not only did this give generation X'ers something to cling to, but it also gave folks like Molly Ringwald, Matthew Broderick, Anthony Michael Hall, Robert Donwey Jr, John Cusack, Rob Lowe and Andrew McCarthy a chance to hit the limelight.

Life was good.

But the National Lampoon's Vacation thing went one too many sequels long. The box office was starting to get over it. Hughes had another Vacation script in his drawer and nobody wnated to make it. The solution? Repackage. Change the name to The Great Outdoors, throw Candy and Aykroyd in it, change the Griswald's to Chet and family - Bam. New project, new paypacket.

Chet takes his family out to the woods for some peace and quiet but, oh no, his wacky relatives show up for zany antics and hilarity. Cue a bear getting his ass blown off, talking raccoons, video cameras in the shower, and consumption of a 96lb steak.

Candy, in one of the final performances of his tragically cut short career, looks like he's in pain throughout. Nothing physical, but you can see he knows how awful this material is. A guy like Chevy Chase could have pulled this off without realising how low his career was sinking, but Candy had talent. He knew he was in the midst of cinematic crap and you can tell it didn't sit well.

To rent or not to rent? I'd say go one step further. Rent, then put tape over the "no record" tab on the cassette and record an episode of The Daily Show over the movie. Then remove the tape and return the video. Trust me, you'll be saving many people from nights of hell.

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originally posted: 07/31/99 13:54:49
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User Comments

11/07/17 Jack Barkley Pathetic attempts at coarse humor misfire most of the time. 2 stars
3/18/14 Phil I don't care what anyone says, this is a classic summer-vacation-in-the-woods comedy. 5 stars
7/08/09 *Holy_J@lapeno* Enjoyable. Wasnt the best john candy movie but still was a riot ^_^ 3 stars
10/22/06 maddy everyone who rated this bad is obviously just looking for attention or something. 5 stars
8/03/06 sophie scaife i thought it was a movie to get you happy when your down 5 stars
9/02/05 ES Still laugh at the racoons 5 stars
2/06/05 Jeff Anderson Only John Candy saves this bland & joyless comedy. NOT WORTH THE TIME OR TROUBLE!!!!!!!!!!! 2 stars
11/23/04 Matt i love this movie! 5 stars
9/29/04 Katy Culen Hilarious! 5 stars
7/30/04 jason mcclintock this movie is great!!! A++ 5 stars
5/12/04 matt ill 4 stars
3/21/03 Jack Sommersby Fairly funny stuff. Without Candy and Akroyd, it's be unbearable. 3 stars
12/11/02 mido bad 1 stars
11/19/02 mitchel dickel It sucked ASS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 1 stars
11/16/02 JL Carriere Liked it alot.......I can relate to it ! 5 stars
10/05/02 Josh this movie is one of the all time best, and it's a 96 oz steak, not a 96 lb steak dumd ass. 5 stars
10/03/02 TimmyTomorrow Big bear chase! Now that's comedy! 5 stars
10/02/02 Charles Tatum Raccoons ain't funny 2 stars
9/27/02 Rebecca it was terrific and funny 5 stars
9/11/02 chuck dawson awesome...1 of my 10 best 5 stars
2/22/02 kitten This movie is funny but it does have its bad moments 3 stars
1/23/02 bryan this movie was fucking funny, OZ is a worthless peice of shit. 4 stars
10/13/01 *~Danielle*Ophelia~* It's a real damn shame when your actors are upstaged by RACCOONS!!! 2 stars
5/30/01 Chevy Murray The best $38 I ever spent!! 4 stars
4/05/01 Andrew Carden It delivers a few really funny moments, but I was expecting way more. 4 stars
3/02/01 lisa buck should've been cuter 3 stars
12/10/00 Tiffany An Incredible comedy...if you have a sense of humour!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
10/23/99 Neil Ferris No-brainer family comedy 3 stars
9/24/99 KK Funny movie actually worth watching. 4 stars
9/13/99 Jason Kinsey i love John Candy. That is all. 3 stars
10/29/98 Silent Rob Howie Duetch aka Sucky John Hughes. But heck, them racoons were a hoot! 2 stars
10/11/98 J-Guy normal SNL alumni flick. not great, not awful. 3 stars
10/10/98 {{{OZ}}} John Candy looked visibly unhappy in this film. National Lampoon without the Griswald's. 1 stars
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  02-Feb-1988 (PG-13)


  02-Jul-1988 (PG)

Directed by
  Howard Deutch

Written by
  John Hughes

  Dan Aykroyd
  John Canndy
  Stephanie Faracy
  Annette Bening
  Chris Young
  Ian Giatti

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