National Lampoon’s The American Vacation

“You’re an American, you think you can escape history. You live for the present.” – The American

The occasions which leave you proud to be an American these days are few and far between. I only wish in this case I could’ve escaped history to forget about the wasted hours on this ho-hum character study of Renaissance Man, George Clooney. Talk about false advertising! Minus one lousy car chase, every action and piece of dialogue is scrunched into this 53 second trailer.

As you see, Assassin, Mr. Butterfly (Clooney), is the target of some other assassins who nearly assassinate him but in turn he assassinates them instead, and then lays low for his last job in a bucolic hillside Italian village to construct a gun for some mysterious woman, Mathilde (Thekla Reuten), who is also planning to assassinate somebody soon. Sounds action packed? But as it turns out Clooney is quite the procrastinator as he seems to kill most of his time doing push/pull ups, competing about his sins with Father Benedetto (Paolo Bonacelli), watching Leone’s “Once Upon A Time In The West”, and fornicating with a local hooker, Clara (Violante Placido).

It’s apparent that Clooney’s reasons to sign on for this script (I can’t imagine anyone reading the 436 page novel from which it’s adapted) was to fondle titties of the hottest snow white looking prostitute and to lounge around Italy in a contemplative mood bordering on pseudo zen mechanics coming off as the wimpiest hit man. I mean Luca Brasi would make a meal out of him and I’m even more intimidated by Mr. Pink, speaking of which, I hope Steve Buscemi don’t pussyfoot around like Clooney in the upcoming Scorsese production of Boardwalk Empire.


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