Cos’ Top Christmas Movies: #2 Home Alone


I haven’t seen this one in its entirety in far too long. I used to love this movie. I mean, as scary as it would have been to be left alone at home, to be able to fend off two dumb burglars who are robbing the entire neighborhood. Who wouldn’t want to do that?

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#2 Home Alone

I remember going to see this movie in the theater and I also remember getting it for Christmas that same year. I only owned this one on VHS (I think I might be too old to buy it on DVD) and I just loved every second of it. It was like a true kids movie, kid comes out on top and the bad guys get what they deserve. Home Alone came out in 1990 and is about Kevin McCallister who is accidentally left home alone by his family and who ends up having to protect his house against two bumbling robbers, Harry and Marv, played by Daniel Stern and Joe Pesci.

On paper this story doesn’t sound like much, but the basic premise came about while filming the movie Uncle Buck with John Candy which also had Macaulay Culkin; has a brief detail behind the stories origin: “The concept for this movie originated during the filming of a scene in Uncle Buck (1989) in which Macaulay Culkin plays a character who interrogates a would-be-babysitter through a letterbox.” This movie was huge, it made a lot of money and went on to have three sequels, only one of which was made with the original stars and production crew.

I definitely think this is a must see for any kid, even now twenty years later (I can’t believe that! Now that makes me feel old) what kid doesn’t want to go see a movie about someone who gets their comeuppance against the bad guys? I put Home Alone above National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation simply because of the sentimental value that Home Alone has. I can watch Christmas Vacation any time, but Home Alone brings me back to that special time growing up.

For me, this movie really came out long before the days of that trailers were the norm, although I trailer for this movie is down at the bottom, I pretty sure I saw this one on TV and wanted to drag my parents to go see it. Surprisingly, I didn’t know that John Candy has a cameo in this movie. According to he actually shot all of his scenes in one really long 23 hour day. But that was a nice surprise at the time, I always liked John Candy.

As for the movie itself, physical comedy is always welcomed, nothing like a Three Stooges style beat down. It looks like it hurts and you wonder how they pulled it off. At the time when this movie came out I thought it was all real, now looking back at it, from the eyes of someone in film, those were some great props, stunts and make-up work to get Harry and Marv as beaten up as they got towards the end of the movie.

Like many movies with unnecessarily bad sequels, I try not to even think about Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. Not even remotely as good as the first one and I have to say much darker and more violent. Did they have to make a second one? Yes, the business was and will always be built that way, but they could have had a much lighter tone. Stick to part one and I’m actually going to see if I can look this one up on Netflix later today.

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