Buck Henry

'Christmas Vacation' is a loopy holiday classic

'Christmas Vacation' is a loopy holiday classic

"Christmas Vacation" is a cuckoo clock of a movie, just as loopy, wonderful and fresh as it was 25 years ago this month when we first unwrapped it.

Rippingly rich satire, the seasonal favorite features Chevy Chase as the bighearted dad, with Beverly D'Angelo as his modern-day Donna Reed, luminescent and saintly even as she sneaks a smoke in the kitchen.

The legendary John Hughes wrote "Christmas Vacation." For my money, Hughes' "Planes, Trains & Automobiles" is his masterwork, warm, resonant and comforting. But for belly laughs, it can't match "Christmas Vacation." Few movies can, holiday-themed or otherwise.

Take this...