National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

Question: At the Christmas dinner, what is the tree ornament behind Clark as he's cutting the turkey?

Question: I have seen a version where when the lights finally come on, an attic scene shows snow being melted into the attic from all the holes Clark punched into his roof. Where did I see this? I am so sure I have seen this scene somewhere in time, as I watch this movie every Christmas.

Question: Was there a deleted scene where Cathrine and Ellen were talking while making the turkey in the kitchen and/or doing something resulting in the bird being "overdone" totally and showing up in the scene at dinner causing the turkey to literally explode in a cloud of dust when carved by Clark? It just seems there was a scene missing there!

Answer: YES! You are 100% correct about the deleted turkey-cooking scene! Both my husband and I remember this scene. It was Catherine and Eddie that cooked the turkey to thank Clark and his family for being hospitable. They had never cooked a turkey before and they thought cooking it at a low temperature for a LONG time would be ideal. It looked great, but completely dehydrated. THIS is why Catherine is so upset when the turkey pops open and steams - she ruined the turkey for everyone.

Answer: I have a DVD with the exploding turkey scene It's a classic.

Answer: There was never a scene as described in the film, nor was there anything in any of the special features. Also, there is no mention of it in any of the commentary.

Answer: I also remember vividly the scene where Catherine is cooking the turkey and have been trying to get a copy of the film where that scene is not deleted. Also checked with my wife, she recalls it too. I think we might have seen it on a very early VHS or LaserDisc version.

Question: What is the name of the Christmas Tree farm they went to to get their tree?

Answer: They didn't go to a Christmas tree farm. He took them to a huge forest to get one most likely because it would be easier to get one free then to pay for one.

They went to a tree farm. After running off the road and jumping the snowbank the wagon crashes through a sign that says "Trees." Clark then says, "We're here...and we made good time too." The humor is Clark forgoes a normal "farmed" tree for the "wild" monster he takes home.

False. They may have run over the tree farm sign, but they absolutely did not harvest a tree from the tree farm.

Answer: They never went to a tree farm. Even though there is a sign that says "Trees", there is no employee there to greet them or even discuss how much the tress cost. Plus, trees on a tree farm are usually smaller and are always lined up in a row. The trees seen by the Griswold's are extremely large and are scattered about like what would be seen in a regular forest which is where they went.

They are never shown in the "store" area of the tree farm, so you can't say that there is nobody working there. They jump the snowbank, it shows them gathering themselves in the car, and the next scene is in the wilderness. It's a small, rundown tree farm, but it is a tree farm business, with a plowed parking lot, garbage cans, lights, other customers, etc. These tree farms usually had pre-cut trees for purchase, but you could also walk out and cut down your own for the "experience" if you wanted to. As someone who has walked a couple miles to get a Christmas tree in December in Minnesota, I can say with absolute certainty that this is accurate.


Answer: It was a tree farm (the car literally flies through a sign that says "Christmas Trees"). There's a deleted scene after they crash and walk to find a tree. Realizing that they didn't have a saw to cut the tree, the family walks to the lot attendant (an odd man, reclining in a lawn chair, wearing a Santa jacket and hat) to ask to borrow a saw. There is a conversation between them where Clark is told that they don't supply saws, but he gave him a shovel. THIS explains how the tree got dug out of the ground. You can actually see a picture of this scene on an old DVD cover.

Chosen answer: Because there was cat food in her jello mould. He's pointing out the absurdity of someone adding cat food to jello.

Question: When Clark gives his boss a Christmas present, he is told to put it with all of the others. There are plenty of presents there, but they are all the same, as they have the exact same shape. What are these presents?


Answer: They are desk organizers.

I'm wondering maybe it was one of the gags in the movie where the boss got the same gift from all the employees. I know there's a lot of gags in the vacation movies.


Answer: I've seen them in stores, it's a desk pen set with a matching business card holder.

Chosen answer: We don't know what is in the packages, but we can assume they are all the same, small, generic gift.


Answer: I think that they could all be tape holders.

Question: They show a large mountain range in the beginning scene. How far away did they drive to get that tree?

Answer: It's never stated in the film, but the assumption is it was a long trip. The kids' annoyed/bored attitude and the fact that Audry refers to them driving "all the way out here" indicate it was at least several hours.

Answer: I believe this movie is supposed to be similar to A Christmas Story, in that the events are being recounted by Clark at a later time. This would explain some of the more fantastical things that happen, such as the Christmas tree excursion events, the truck driver, driving under the truck, jumping off the snowbank, the blonde...etc. I remember someone saying that this justified why the kids seem to jump around in ages between films too...bad memory.


Answer: He's a chemist who develops food additives for a food company.

Brian Katcher

Question: Why didn't Rocky have a speaking part in the movie?

Answer: There are a number of possibilities: perhaps the studio did it to cut down on cost, as speaking parts require higher pay. Or perhaps they simply had nothing funny for the character to say. Or it could be intentional that they chose to have him remain mute.

Question: When Clark gets the lights to work, Eddie shows up. Eddie calls to Rocky and Ruby Sue to come see what Uncle Clark has done to the house. Then in the scene where Clark's boss is at the house, Clark refers to Eddie as his Cousin-in-law. Is this a mistake or is the word uncle just being used as a pet name for Clark for the kids?

Answer: No mistake or pet name. In America it's common to refer to your cousin's kids as your nephews or nieces and thus you would be their aunt or uncle. Technically, they would be your first cousins once removed, but in the English language there's isn't a specific word for that relationship, so most stick with nephew/niece and aunt/uncle relationship.


Eddie and Catherine are on Ellen's side of the family that is why he calls him cousin in law.

Question: What is the first carol sung in the car?

Answer: If you're referring to the opening scene, they're finishing up "Oh Come All Ye Faithful"


Question: Before the squirrel incident with the second tree, Clark places two gifts under the tree. He then picks up an opened gift and appears to hang two items on the tree. What is he putting on the tree? This is immediately before Aunt Bethany says "What is that noise?"


Answer: It was the underwear he saw at the store earlier in the film.

Question: I remember seeing a scene at Clark's boss' house with lots of people having a big party when Cousin Eddie shows up to kidnap him. What happened to that scene in the version I bought on DVD?

Answer: Are you sure it was this movie? The boss was in his jammies when he was kidnapped and his wife was alone when she called the police.

Brian Katcher

This movie seems to have an awful lot of scenes people randomly remember, that are corroborated by other people, but that the official information on IMDB and other sources disprove. Remember that awesome Nelson Mandela cameo in it?


This does seem unlikely. Having him abducted from a party would change the entire end of the film. As you say, he's in his pajamas, which would make no sense.

Question: What happened to Todd? Did Margo kick him out?

Answer: It wouldn't be much of a surprise to kick him out. Obviously he has no idea what happened to her when she comes back and asks her. She also believes the police knocking at her door is actually Todd and says if he want to come in, he'll have to break the door down. So logically, she did kick him out.

Question: Why, if Eddie came up to visit Clark from down south somewhere, did his gas give out in Gurney, which is north of Chicago?

Answer: It's possible he got lost, or took a way around traffic. Gurnee leads directly to Chicago on I-90/94.

Greg Dwyer

Answer: I don't know. In Vacation, they lived in Coolidge, KS. But they lost that house.

Question: Who played the saleswoman Clark talked to at the mall in the beginning?

Answer: Nicolette Scorsese (no relation to director Martin Scorsese). She's credited as "Mary" in the film.


Question: What is surrounding the famous Jell-O mold? Is it shredded carrots?

Answer: The red "garnish" around the Jell-O mold looks like ribbons of sliced tomato that was cut in a spiral pattern.


Answer: If it is the Jell-O mold that Aunt Bethany brings, it's cat food.

Cat food is in the Jell-O mold, but it doesn't look like cat food around the Jell-O.


Question: When Clark was locked in the attic, watching old home movies, are they clips from real black and white movies and just edited together to make it like Christmas was like when Clark was young?


Answer: No, they were made for the movie. It was obviously young Clark and younger Uncle Lewis in the clips.

Brian Katcher

Continuity mistake: When Uncle Lewis and Aunt Bethany have just arrived and Aunt Bethany says, "Oh dear, did I break wind?" Ellen helps Aunt Bethany fully remove her coat. Seconds later, within the same scene, Ellen is still helping Bethany off with her coat. (01:02:45)

More mistakes in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

Todd: Hey, Griswold. Where do you think you're gonna put a tree that big?
Clark: Bend over and I'll show you.
Todd: You've got a lot of nerve talking to me like that, Griswold.
Clark: I wasn't talking to you.

More quotes from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

Trivia: Clark Griswold in the attic watching old movies dressed in a woman's turban and gloves to keep warm is not only funny but a reference to the Norma Desmond character from "Sunset Boulevard", who watches her old films to remember her Hollywood glory days.


More trivia for National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

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