Tuesday, August 10, 2010

#49 - Summer Rental - 1985

Summer Rental was my 7th and final movie of outdoor themed week. Another John Candy outdoor comedy (he had a lot of them actually) and this one was actually 3 years prior to the Great Outdoors. This comedy about a burnt out airline traffic controller who takes his family on an event filled family vacation to Florida was quite comical. Not quite in the same ballpark as the Great Outdoors but a very funny film none the less. Below is my detailed review.

John Candy was really the only major film star (in my mind at least) in this movie as he played the role of Jack Chester however the rest of the cast was pretty decent as well. Karen Austin played Sandy Chester, Candy's character's wife and then Kerri Green (from the Goonies - see below) played his daughter Jennifer Chester and a very young Joey Lawrence played his son Bobby Chester. That rounded out the family sans the youngest daughter but there was more. Richard Crenna was excellent in his role of the yuppie, stuck up, arrogant trophy winning yachtsman Al Pellet. He played the role of a guy you love to hate to a perfect tee! This film also starred Rip Torn as Scully (very Piraty) and John Larroquette as Don Moore. Larroquette's role was more minimal than any of the others.

Lets start with this, Jack Chester, Candy's character in this film. To me he represents so many hard working everyday Dad's out there making a living for his family. He is over worked and probably underpaid yet there is no indication of that in this film but you can sense the guy has never really taken time off when he states "I'm sorry, I haven't done one of these in 11 years" when referring to a vacation, I'm assuming a family vacation. I love the small u-haul trailer he packs up and attaches to his car as they head out to Florida. The trip out there was uneventful in itself but once they get there things change quite drastically for the Chester family.

Since its outdoor week lets talk a little bit about the outdoor theming of this film. It is obviously shot at a beach somewhere. It is supposed to be Citrus Cove, Florida however since I am no Florida expert myself I have no clue if they actually filmed it there. There was quite a few scenes at the beach but also a lot of the outdoor scenes were on sailboats, both big and small, out in the ocean. I have never been sailing but it looks quite fun but also quite difficult. Come to think of it with the movie What About Bob and his sailing expeditions that I watched earlier this week and then with the Pirates of the Caribbean's films I am set to watch next week for my bluray week there is a lot of boating action going on in the films I am watching. Sail away me hearties I guess? Overall I thought the outdoor scenes were on par for this type of film.

There were quite a few scenes in this one that I really enjoyed. Below is a list of some of my favorites. We have to start out with Jack falling asleep on their first day at the beach and burning himself silly. I loved his quote when his daughter said "your pretty red dad" and he replied "good, got a little base going". He didn't just get a base he got the whole boil package and all. It looked as though he really burnt himself for this film and I have an idea he did. It looked that real. Then I have to mention the family outing at the lobster restaurant where there table was swooped up by Al Pellett and his guests. This is where we first saw the interaction between Jack and Al. Al's incredibly inappropriate and annoying arrogance were on full display in this scene and I loved it when Jack yelled out "we don't want to eat somewhere that has rats, I saw rats on the floor" as he was leaving the restaurant.

In one of the funnier scenes in the entire movie Jack is awakened to a knock on the door in the middle of the night and after opening it and a short exchange is made with the family standing outside it is quickly evident that the Chester's mistakenly went to the wrong rental property when first arriving in Florida. They went to Beach Lane as opposed to Beach Rd. As the family patiently waited downstairs as Jack and his family moved all their belongings out of the house from downstairs there is one scene where Jack trips and spills dog food all over the hardwood floors, absolutely hilarious. Then as they are about to leave he grabs his daughter who shouts out "I wet my bed daddy" and Jack replies "nooo honey, you didn't wet our bed you wet there bed". Too funny and absolutely mortifying if I was the Chester family. haha.

The Chesters actual real rental property is much worse and is right next to a beach access road that is often packed with people heading to the beach. As the film moved on there is a hilarious scene where Jack tried to locate his family in an overcrowded beach but accidentally spills water out of his cooler and several unsuspecting victims. After injuring his knee Jack is left to stay at home and entertain himself while his family is out at play and this is when he meets his busty new blonde neighbor. After spilling his iced tea when first seeing here she invited him over to her place and eventually flips up her top to expose her breasts and asked "do they look real". Candy's expression is wonderful and probably true to form for any guy given the same opportunity. Turns out she was self conscious about her new boob job and was asking everyone their opinions much to the dismay of her husband. When ask to "feel" them before leaving Jack does so only after the husband insists and makes the downright hilarious comment that "those are fun for the whole family". haha. Love it!!

The rest of the film details how Jack and Scully team up to race Al in the annual Regatta Race. Jack does all this training and planning while his family is away with new found friends Don and his son. While they are on speedboats and playing in the sun Jack is getting sailing tips from Scully. After learning that the owner of the rental property the Chester's are staying at dies and his brother turns out to be Al Jack gives Al his monthly dues but Al threatens to kick them out of the house. Jack later realizes that in order to keep his family there at the rental house he must come up with a way to let Al let them stay there. He decides to bet him that he will beat him in the Regatta race and this in turn brings the family together to try and find a boat and get it ready for the race. The boat they find is Scully's Barnacle which is actually being used as a restaurant but after some fixing it up and a new paint job they are on their way and enter into the race just in time.

Jack and his team including his family, Scully, and a few other interesting characters takes on and eventually defeats Al and his crew of stuck up rich brats in the Regatta race and in turn gets to stay in the rental house for the rest of the summer. The movie had a good ending but I had wished it would have shown a victory dinner or celebration afterwards especially since the movie was on 87 minutes in length. Still it didn't take away of the entire film as I still very much enjoyed it but watching it after the Great Outdoors wasn't quite fair. With that being said overall I would still give this film a firm B!

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