Symian on                Ellen Hamilton Latzen

Christmas Vacation!

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation is one of my all-time favorite films. I love it, even as flawed as it is, and will probably watch it several times a year until the day I die. It is a much nicer version of my own family Christmases - Or the Days of Wine and Narcissism, as I call them.

Ellen Hamilton Latzen was in this great film. She played little Cousin Ruby Sue Johnson, Cousin Eddie's child. If you've seen the movie you'll remember her biggest line: "Sometimes I think all that Santa crap's just bull. If he was so real, how come we didn't get squat last year? We didn't do nothing wrong, and we still got the shaft."

A heartwarming scene follows that. I love that scene. I didn't the first time I saw the movie because they cut off to do it right as the sexy girl in Clark's fantasy was taking off her top. I didn't hear most of the dialog after that because I was too busy yelling a strangling "Noooooooo!"


Ah well. That's just life as life is. I did eventually see the scene in its entirety and have come to love it for what it is. I also love it because I have met worse parents than Eddie in my life. Much worse. Really rotten buggers who won't "do" Christmas for their kid because, and I quote, "I don't want them to get use to having it, and then one year we can't afford it and they'll be too disappointed, so no, we'd don't do Christmas or Christmas presents."


I loath people like that.

Anyhoo. Ellen was that little kid in the movie, as she was that little kid in "Fatal Attraction". I am glad Clark was there to make her happy in the second film because her bunny got stewed in the first one! Poor bunny! I don't know about you but I'd rather have the bunny than I would Glenn Close. I would! Pretty bunny. ;P

Ellen did movies, television, and Broadway. That's a lot for a kid, let me tell you! I am always amazed by little kids who can learn dialog, remember their places, where to stand, and how to, err, act. Those kind of kids have to have more mature brains than most other kids. All that remembering! Heck, I've got nephews and nieces over the age of 20 who can't remember that they owe me money, much less remember lines out of a script! I cannot imagine a childhood like Ellen had. I just can't imagine it. And then not to be hired to act anymore... well... that stinks. It really does.

I have to say this about Ellen's character in Christmas Vacation: I cannot watch that film, see her in it with her hair all mussed up, and not immediately remember the feral kid from "The Road Warrior."

Ellen! The Feral Kid!

See what I mean? Had to be said.



Where is she now: (as of  03/25/2010)
 I was lucky enough to have had contact with Ellen a few years ago. She's a very sweet and candid person and was willing to share information on her current life a little with me. She is no longer in the business but really would like to be, on many different levels. She thought for a while that she would like to attend film school, but never actually pursued it. Real life got in the way. She also said "Plus, it's kinda cool to be considered a has-been. And, kind of sad too."

"I'm proud of what I've done, but I yearn for so much more." - Ellen Hamilton Latzen

Ellen is currently an Account Executive. The most recent photo I have found is here:





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