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Summer Rental

Year: 1985
Studio: Paramount
Director: Carl Reiner
Writer: Jeremy Stevens/Mark Reisman
Cast: John Candy, Richard Crenna, Rip Torn, John Laroquette

The eighties spawned a particular kind of film, and in this case it's not just because 80s comic stalwarts like John Candy or John Laroquette fill the cast. It was more a 90-minute sitcom style that had no pretensions of theme and no sense of cinematic scope, just straight camera angles, a few laughs and your then-ten bucks worth.

Summer Rental is very much one, the National Lampoon's Vacation -style story of a family's struggle to enjoy a holiday in a rented house next to the beach.

It's the kind of movie where the producer realised they could get Candy and who's presence got the whole thing greenlit. A bunch of jokes playing to his persona ensued, and then around the half hour mark a hero's journey plot involving a villain (Crenna) had to come into play to pad out the rest of the running time and sustain all the jokes they'd written.

None of which is to say the film's bad, but as you expect it's forgettable, the plot pointless and the laughs occasionally hearty.

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