National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)

R   |    |  Comedy


National Lampoon's Animal House (1978) Poster

At a 1962 college, Dean Vernon Wormer is determined to expel the entire Delta Tau Chi Fraternity, but those troublemakers have other plans for him.


7.5/10
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  • Tom Hulce in National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)
  • Tim Matheson and James Widdoes in National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)
  • Martha Smith in National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)
  • Martha Smith and James Daughton in National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)
  • National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)
  • National Lampoon's Animal House (1978)

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18 December 2001 | jckruize
8
| National Lampoon's finest cinematic moment.
Tasteless, politically incorrect and absolutely laugh-out loud hilarious, with a cast that's a Who's Who of later stars, including Peter Riegert, Tom Hulce, Tim Matheson, Karen Allen, Kevin Bacon, etc.

It's bittersweet watching the brilliance of John Belushi in this, his finest hour. Every twitch of his beady eyes, every jiggle of his mighty beer belly, every line of dialogue delivered with just the right amount of bluster or sneering sarcasm -- this guy was a bona-fide comic genius. He was taken from us far too soon.

Director John Landis orchestrates the escalating hi-jinks with masterful comedic precision, Elmer Bernstein contributes a very funny mock-grandiose score, and veteran character actor John Vernon provides a wonderful arch-villain as the toweringly evil Dean Wormer.

There are almost too many comic highlights; pick your own favorite. My candidates: Bluto's rousing speech about the Germans bombing Pearl Harbor, Pinto's Good & Bad Consciences battling over whether he should take advantage of his passed-out date, and Otter picking up the dean's wife in the supermarket vegetable aisle.

Watch for co-writer Doug Kenney as 'Stork', suspected of brain damage. Another Saturday Night Live alumnus, along with Belushi and Harold Ramis, he died in a hiking accident in Hawaii not too long after the movie's release. Heartfelt thanks to him and Belushi, as well as everyone else involved in this classic, for providing us with so many laughs.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The 25th year reunion edition of National Lampoon's Animal House (1978) interviewed Peter Riegert who stayed in character as Boon who had gone on to be an attorney. He did in fact play an attorney twice. Traffic (2000) and Leverage: The Lost Heir Job (2009).


Quotes

Larry's evil conscience: Fuck her. Fuck her brains out. Suck her tits, squeeze her buns. You know she wants it.
Larry's good conscience: For shame! Lawrence, I'm surprised at you!
Larry's evil conscience: Aw, don't listen to that jack-off. Look at those gazongas. You'll never get a better chance.
Larry's good conscience: If you lay one finger on ...


Goofs

In the homecoming parade there is a float showing President Kennedy and the word "Camelot". The use of this word dates from an interview Jackie Kennedy gave Theodore H. White days after Kennedy's assassination in which she revealed that the President listened to the music from the Broadway musical "Camelot" before he went to sleep. The movie occurs before his death and uses a word not associated with the president at that time.


Crazy Credits

At the very end of the credits there is an advertisement: "While in Hollywood, visit Universal Studios." The phrase "(Ask for Babs.)" is below that.


Alternate Versions

When Bluto peeps through the sorority-house window he sees some topless girls having a pillow-fight. In the TV version the girls are wearing bras.


Soundtracks

Tossin' and Turnin'
Written by
Ritchie Adams and Malou Rene
Performed by Bobby Lewis
Courtesy of Springboard International Records, Inc.

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