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Is Christmas Vacation Kid Friendly? Parents Guide

Wondering if National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation is ok for kids? If you’ve been wanting to introduce this holiday classic to your family, maybe go for an edited TV version. The humor can get pretty raunchy. Here’s what parents need to know in this Christmas Vacation Parents Guide. 

Christmas Vacation Parents Guide

Christmas Vacation Parents Guide – Is it Kid Friendly? 

Clark Griswold has always dreamed about a big family holiday together, but he soon regrets it when the in-laws and crazy cousin arrive. Plus add a miserly boss who doesn’t want to pay him a Christmas bonus, and the chaos ensues! 

Don’t get me wrong, there is a lot to laugh about in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. When you see amazing and over-the-top holiday lights, you can thank Clark Griswold. If you like slapstick, farting, off-colored jokes, then this is the film for you. 

Is Christmas Vacation kid friendly? If they believe in Santa Claus, don’t let them watch this one. Also some of the humor is inappropriate for younger kids. 

Is Christmas Vacation Kid Friendly?

Age Rating: Why is Christmas Vacation Rated PG-13?

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation is rated PG-13 for language and sexual content and may not be suitable for children under 13 according to the MPAA

Language in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

There’s quite a bit of language in Christmas Vacation including a**hole, jacka**, fat a**, sh*t, shi**er, damn, g-ddamn, bit**, hell, and one use of the f-word. I counted at least 35 uses of profanity not including “oh my g-d” and Jesus. 

Clark calls his boss all kinds of bad names including di*kless. And there’s a lot of potty humor. 

Mature Content: Is Christmas Vacation OK for Kids?

There is quite a bit of sexual content in Christmas Vacation and isn’t ok for younger kids. Clark is kind of a perv. 

While shopping a saleswomen is wearing a low cut top that shows cleavage. She shows Clark women’s underwear and raises her skirt to show the type she is wearing; upper bare leg seen.

Clark wipes his sweat off his forehead with a pair of panties. Accidentally says hooters and nipple.

Some characters drink alcohol and smoke.

A Grandpa is shown up late in bed reading a “Sassy” magazine with a flashlight.

A man tells a woman that he wants to kiss every inch of her body. 

Characters kiss.

Clark day dreams of the sales woman swimming in his pool, then she starts to undress. You see side boob. 

The police show up and tell everyone to freeze, and Ellen freezes with her hand on Clark’s genitals (over his pants).

National Lampoon Christmas Vacation Parent Movie Review

Is Christmas Vacation Appropriate For Kids Under 13?

In National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation you can expect to see partial nudity, some sexual content, suggestive references, and some characters using profanity. To sum it up, the unedited version of Christmas Vacation is not kid-friendly.

I would not recommend it for kids under 13. Also, there is talk about hiding presents and who really buys the gifts, so this is not for little ones who believe in Santa Claus.

Christmas Vacation isn’t my kind of humor, but I can see how some people would find it funny. It’s become a Christmas classic in many homes, because it’s silly and doesn’t take itself seriously.

Some themes hit home like being taken advantage of at work, dysfunctional families during the holidays, and overall, that family is everything. However, all the extra sexual innuendos and thoughts of adultery were over the top and unnecessary. Clark is literally daydreaming of cheating on his wife.  

For those with a 14-year-old boy sense of humor, then Clark Griswold is a hero. I prefer the edited version, if any, though I’d rather watch Elf

Check out the best Christmas Vacation quotes for a Cliff’s Notes version and some of Clark Griswold’s best quotes.

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

More Christmas Movie Parent Reviews

Walter Fisher

Saturday 1st of January 2022

Where can I purchase the edited version?


Saturday 1st of January 2022

I don’t think you can purchase it anywhere. The edited versions are usually on TV or cable around Christmas. Or you can use a service like VidAngel to filter what you don’t want.


Thursday 23rd of December 2021

The use of the word ''Fuck'' completely destroys the opportunity of playing this in a family enviroment. They should have cut it from all version. While a bit risque in places, it's easier to otherlook everything else and the majority of stuff goes over kid's heads and the milder swearwords are not as bad. They need to re-issue this as a PG - which they did on VHS and DVD but not on Blu.

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