The film that made everyone fall in love with that little imp Macaulay Culkin has been re-released with additional special features in recognition of its 25th anniversary. Since it first was released the film has been a favourite for little and big kids alike. The crazy antics and physical humour makes them laugh over and over. Home Alone is everything a holiday movie should be as it is funny and feel good at the same time.
The film was so successful that three sequels followed it. Once the booby traps that Kevin have set up for the two burglars start director Chris Columbus (Rent, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) keeps the action/humour coming at a fast and furious pace. John Hughes (Maid in Manhattan, Beethovan), who wrote the screenplay, knows how to make funny films and this was especially true in the 1980s. He was the master of mixing laughs with a heartwarming ending. Acting-wise Culkin steals the show because he is just so darn cute, but the real stars of the film are Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern as the burglars. They execute the physical comedy perfectly. Home Alone is a film that you can watch over and over again and not become bored. It has definitely stood the test of time.
Every kid is usually bursting at the seams with the anticipation of Christmas, but such is not the case for one little guy in the McAllister house. Kevin McAllister (Macaulay Culkin – Party Monster, Richie Rich) is eight years old and the youngest in his large family. The extended family is all at Kevin’s house the night before they leave for France to spend the holidays with Kevin’s uncle. Having annoyed everyone in the house Kevin’s mom (Catherine O’Hara – For Your Consideration, Best in Show) sends him up to the third floor to spend the evening. In anger Kevin stomps off yelling that his Christmas wish would be for his family to disappear.
His wish comes true the very next morning. As his family has overslept they are in a huge rush to catch their flight and somehow forget Kevin. He wakes up thinking he made his family disappear and is, at first, content.
As Kevin is becoming the man of the house two burglars, Harry (Joe Pesci – My Cousin Vinnie, JFK) and Marv (Daniel Stern – City Slickers, Hannah and Her Sisters), attempt to rob the house thinking there is no one there. Once they realize that Kevin is there alone it does not dissuade them from trying to rob the place. Kevin, who is now really missing his family, sets up many ‘surprises’ around the house to try and keep the burglars out.
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York directed by Chris Columbus:
That cute, but devilish imp Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin – Home Alone, Richie Rich) is back for another romp. The story is nothing new as it is another Christmas season and the little guy has been forgotten and left behind by his family yet again. This is not brain surgery, folks. It worked once so why wouldn’t the duo of screenwriter John Hughes (Maid in Manhattan, Beethovan) and director Chris Columbus (I Love You, Beth Cooper, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) try it again. I mean, Macauly Culkin was still cute back then…
The McAllisters are planning a trip to Miami for the Christmas holidays. This time Kevin makes it all the way to the airport before he is once again separated from his family. He ends up on a plane bound for New York. His mother (Catherine O’Hara – Where the Wild Things Are, Best in Show) is in a panic and tries to find her little boy.
As Kevin has his father’s credit card he is able to get a room at the Plaza Hotel. It is not only a room, but a very fancy suite. During his time roaming around New York he makes friends with a toy store owner, E.F. Duncan (Eddie Bracken – Baby’s Day Out, Rookie of the Year) and a homeless woman, Pigeon Woman (Brenda Fricker – Milk, My Left Foot).
His old friends The Wet Bandits, Harry (Joe Pesci – Lethal Weapon 4, Casino) and Marv (Daniel Stern – Cityslickers, Whip It), have escaped from jail and they run into Kevin. Kevin finds out that they plan to rob Mr. Duncan’s toy store on Christmas Eve. The little boy alone in the Big Apple has to come up with a plan to stop them.
Though this is pretty much a carbon copy of the first “Home Alone” film somehow it is a little different. It has a little more depth to it than the first while still having the same type of silly physical comedy. This time the booby traps that little Kevin, who is far from an angel, are a little nastier this time out. But admittedly even though I knew what was coming I still found myself laughing. I am helpless in front of this type of comedy. It gets me every time.
-Trailers for Home Alone, Home Alone 2 and Home Alone 3
-Mac Cam: Behind the scenes with Macaulay Culkin
-1990 Press featurette
-How to Burglar-Proof Your Home: The Stunts of Home Alone
-The Making of Home Alone
-Home Alone Around the World
-Where’s Buzz Now?
-Angels With Filthy Souls
-Deleted scenes/alternate takes