While it could be said that this is not much more than a remake of the first film, but there is enough to makes us go along with the film and enjoy all that it has to offer. The fact that we have the Griswold family out of their own culture and seemingly unaware of their own faults (although they can see each others) as they travel through Europe and presume themselves to be educated enough to enjoy what they’re experiencing. We laugh at, not only their lack of understanding the langue and culture, but their lack of ability to appreciate what they’re experiencing with each other… for the majority of the film that is.
In a way, it is feels like they are going through the motions to say they have done it, rather than experience the pleasure of what is on offer as they travel through each country. Although this film does not have the destination such as the first film had in its final moments, the whole film is the journey and destination. Which, like the previous film brings out the best and the worst in the family; making this fun, maybe not as much as the first, but it still makes us laugh and cringe at the idea of what is happening. As we know in the back of our minds, there is something of ourselves in these characters… if we like to admit it or not.
There is a slight feeling that this is aimed a little more at a family audience than the original film. The langue seems a little tamer and there doesn’t seem to be the chance of certain characters having outbursts in the way we saw in the previous film. Although, I presume this is due, not only to the company wanting to make more money, but the fact that we have a different director. The choice of director of course will have been partly due to the company wanting a lower rating for… the already mentioned to make more money. Along with showing a little less flesh; although there is some, but this time it feels a little less sexy.
It was great to see the filmmakers looking outside their own country, making fun of not only the people of their own country, but those they were visiting… although this is all very much clichés of the people and what some characters may think of where they’ve found themselves.
This, just as much as the original, would be a completely different film if made today, if it were to involve modern day technology. People would be able to find information and make calls which were much harder to do in 1985. But I think that’s what makes the film all the more entertaining, having less ease than we have now, and actually having to deal with the problems in ways that were at hand.