ANIMAL HOUSE is the film that launched National Lampoon as a comedy powerhouse. Developed by the editors at the Harvard Lampoon, the film is a collection of true-life experiences and memories with a great deal of embellishment. Nothing is sacred in this film, in which every gesture, phrase, and song became de rigueur in fraternity houses nationwide after its release. Decadence, debauchery, and delinquency prevail at Delta House, the scourge of the fraternity system at Faber College in 1962. In an effort to rid himself of the troublesome brothers, Dean Wormer (John Vernon) hatches a plan in cahoots with the brown-nosing Greg Marmalard (James Daughton) of rival fraternity Omega to have the Deltas kicked off campus. Unfortunately for them, the determination and drive of the Deltas is more than anyone counted on. In their last stand against the uptight dean, the antiheroes of Delta drink, smoke, romp, frolic, and dance--going out with a bang. This outrageous, much-loved comedy classic features the first major film role of the late, great John Belushi as John "Bluto" Blutarsky, the hard-partying, beer-guzzling champion of Delta house.
Cast: John Belushi
Director: John Landis
Producer: Ivan Reitman, Matty Simmons
In National Lampoon's first film, a parody of 1962 college life, it's campus hijinks galore as the rowdiest fraternity at Faber College battles rival fraternities and administrators, chases women, and throws toga parties. Chief animal John "Bluto" Butarsky (John Belushi) leads the fraternity in wacky hijinks and raunchy debauchery as they take on the establishment of the college. This extremely popular college comedy became an instant classic, quickly beoming one of the most oft-quoted films ever made.
"...There's enough bite and bawdiness in the Matty Simmon-Ivan Reitman production to provide lots of smile and several broad guffaws..."
Variety - Murf. (06/28/1978)
"...Stupidly funny....Rent it again and see if you don't laugh..."
Entertainment Weekly - Glenn Kenny (04/15/1994)
"...Cheerfully sleazy....Innocent fun..."
New York Times - Janet Maslin (07/28/1978)
"...There's sophistication under the slapstick..."
Total Film - Kevin Harley (12/01/2003)
"[With an] infectious burlesque spirit and deft use of gross-out humor..."
Premiere - Premiere Staff (12/01/2003)
"[J]oyously, liberatingly infantile....It's Belushi, as Delta's wildman-mascot Bluto, who informs the film's raucous, anarchic spirit."
New York Times - Charles Taylor (09/05/2008)