The full title of this movie is Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (And Don't Come Back!)
. It was the fourth Peanuts
film by Lee Mendelsohn
and Bill Melendez
, and it was released in 1980.
Charlie Brown, Linus, Peppermint Patty, and Marcie become exchange students and are sent to a village in France. Patty and Marcie stay at a French farmhouse, while Charlie Brown and Linus stay at a spooky chateau in the middle of nowhere. Charle Brown was invited to the chateau by Violet, a girl whose grandmother fell in love with Charlie Brown's grandfather during World War II. Violet's uncle, the Baron, is a total xenophobe and wants the boys out of the stable where they're sleeping. Eventually, Linus meets Violet, but then they manage to accidentally set the chateau on fire. When the gang save the chateau, the Baron lets them stay and they all live happily ever after.
Gems of the story: The gang stops in London on the way to France. Snoopy plays tennis at Wimbledon and gets absolutely thrashed. Then, after they cross the English Channel, he gets blow-dried by the hovercraft, causes a multi-car pileup several times, and gets drunk on root beer at the pub down the street while dancing along to Sentimental Journey. Marcie falls in love (you thought it wouldn't be possible? Nothing's impossible for the French). Charlie Brown breaks down in front of the customs inspector ("I... I have nothing to declare, sir! I THROW MYSELF UPON THE MERCY OF THE COURT!") and has great difficulty getting a loaf of French bread out of a shop door (when he finally succeeds, Snoopy slams the car's hood down over the bread, and Patty says "It was really generous of you to give your portion to the car...").
Some other great exchanges from the movie:
Gate agent, to Snoopy: Ah yes, first class. Very good, sir. Proceed to the VIP lounge.
Charlie Brown: First class? VIP lounge? How come he flies first class and we fly tourist?
Linus: He's your dog, Charlie Brown...
(in a restaurant in London)
Charlie Brown: Can you help us with the menu?
Cockney waiter: (long litany of unintelligible menu items)
Charlie Brown: What is.... what did you say?
Marcie: Maybe we should have studied English, not French, sir.
Peppermint Patty: We're glad to be here. We bring you greetings from across the sea! Or the ocean, or whatever. As someone once said, "Lafayette, we are here!"
French student, to another: Who is Lafayette?
And others that I can't remember off the top of my head. Overall, this was an excellent movie, possibly the best Peanuts movie ever made (though Race For Your Life, Charlie Brown
is pretty high up there, too). I watched this thing a million times when I was a kid, and I wish I still had the tape so I could watch it again.