"The Great Outdoors" is a fun late 80s comedy that includes the talents of John Candy and Dan Aykroyd. Now I will say that most of the film is incredibly predictable and the plot is almost entirely formulaic, yet despite it all, it's hard to truly hate this film. It's nothing more than average, but still enjoyable.
John Candy stars as Chet Ripley, yet another likable protagonist who is always getting screwed over by his jerk of a co-star, in this case Dan Akyroyd as his brother-in-law, Roman Craig. Chet wants peace and quiet in a small Canadian lakefront town with his family when the Craigs drop in uninvited. It's so overdone and overused, but a few of the scenes are quite funny and somewhat unique.
What makes this film different is that it feels more family-oriented. Not in the sense that it's appropriate for all ages, but in the sense that the film offers something for every member of the family. Whether it's the adult dialogue, the films troublesome kids, or the teenage fling/romance subplot, "Great Outdoors" tries to make a reason for every demographic to see this movie. It seems really contrived, but other than the National Lampoon's "Vacation" movies, this is honestly one of the most family-oriented comedies of that era.
"Great Outdoors" is a solid 80s comedy and is one that can be called "fun for all ages."