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Are these really the best summer vacation movies of the '80s?




Nostalgia works best in the summer, so it's no surprise that '80s movies dominate another website's list of the 25 Best Summer Vacation Movies of all-time.'s list is full of the usual suspects from our decade, with one or two surprises.

Did they miss any? Tons, if you compare their list with my previous list of the top 20 summer movies of the '80s. But I do allow 1979's Meatballs to be grandfathered in, so there you go.

Here is's movies from the '80s ... along with a quickie excerpt from their picks.

Weekend at Bernie's (1989): "Despite Bernie's unique circumstances, we still learned a few things about kicking back from this deceased bossman: Lay back, dress to impress (Where can we cop that robin's egg blue jacket?), and let the half-dressed, mostly drunk women fall all over you. That's the ticket."

Meatballs (1979): "Sure, there is a fair share of formulaic camp scenes (scrawny kid turned hero? Haven't see that before!), but with Murray at the help, even the most heavy-handed clichés become comedic gems."
Sleepaway Camp (1983): "It's no wonder this cult slasher classic was dubbed The Nightmare Vacation. But like the worst best nightmares, not everything at Camp Arawak is what it seems, and this twisted tale concludes with one of the most unexpected revelations in horror history."

Little Darlings (1980): Compared to the American Pie movies, Little Darling's rauncy-ish teen banter will barely make you bat an eye, but unlike the former, Little Darling's actually manages to make us contemplate our innocence, you know, when it actually existed way, way back when."

The Great Outdoors (1988): This John Hughes-directed comedy isn't perfect (the obligatory "nature comedy" plot devices are dutifully fulfilled) but the script's lacking is easily overlooked in light of the fireworks Candy and Aykroyd create when their comedic forces collide."

Friday the 13th (1980): "Now we know the truth: Camp is not a place for joyous summer memories. Mrs. Voorhees ensured that camping will forever be tinged with terror."

Stand by Me (1986): "Their coming-of-age story is the kind of adventure you can only have on a summer vacation, when long nights and possibility-filled days create crystallized memories you'll recall in detail for the rest of your life."

National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983): "Many family vacations later, the Griswold's journey to Walley World is still a trip to remember and stands as a timeless warning against enduring your elders for more than one hour at time."

[Last modified: Tuesday, June 12, 2012 12:14pm]


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