This review for the John Hughes Blogathon comes from Rob of MovieRob. Thanks for the review, Rob! Let’s see what he thinks of Home Alone. 🙂
“Bless this highly nutritious microwavable macaroni and cheese dinner and the people who sold it on sale. Amen.” – Kevin McCallister
Number of Times Seen – 1 (3 Mar 2014)
Brief Synopsis –An 8 Year old kid gets left at home by accident when his family travels to France for Christmas. He must try to find a way to fend for himself and to keep 2 bumbling burglars from robbing his house.
My Take on it – Surprising, I have never seen this whole movie from start to end before I sat down to watch it for CPD’s amazing John Hughes Blogathon.
I have never been the biggest fan of Macaulay Culken and didn’t really think this movie would be enjoyable on a whole. Some of the clips I had seen in the past were funny, but I didn’t believe that they could keep it up for 100 minutes.
I put all my negative thoughts aside when I sat down with the hope of giving this one a chance.
In retrospect, I can now say that this movie was enjoyable to watch, but I don’t see myself wanting to watch it again in the near (or maybe even distant) future.
Hughes does a great job placing all the puzzle pieces at the beginning of the movie to make most of the plot seem plausible. I can conceivably believe that two large families traveling together and in a rush to catch a plane (yes, post-9/11, they wouldn’t have a chance of getting on that plane to France) would forget a kid. No parent, myself included would admit to having such a thing happen to them, but Hughes’ writing makes it at least seem plausible if not possible.
The burglars staking out the place dressed as cops and the lax security systems of the late 80’s also helps move the idea of the plot along.
When I think about it, the last few comments that I made actually prove that the concept of this movie and the way it was done is so timely and only worked up until 1990 or so because of all the technological advances since then. This is one of the few Hughes movies that I can currently think of that isn’t timeless and couldn’t be re-made well enough today. (I’m not advocating Hughes remakes or any remakes for that matter.)
Being the parent of a 9 year old and an 8 year old, I can’t imagine either of them or any of their friends for that matter being able to survive like Culken did over 4 days all alone. I’m not sure if this says something about today’s youth or something about the implausibility of a young kid being able to fend for himself so well.
I’m aware that I’m a strong advocate for suspension of disbelief when watching a movie, but I usually refer to unexplained science in a movie or things that might be plausible in certain movie worlds, but here I’m referring to the fact that very few (if any) 8 years olds could act as independent as Culkin does here and that actually somewhat disappoints me.
Besides that, the slapstick humor in this movie is great whether it be the ways Culken fends off the burglars, the way he can perfectly use a VCR remote to get a pizza or even the way he searches the house for things to do worked well.
This movie also has its sentimental parts, but I had a lot of trouble sympathizing with the mother and her quest to get back home and also with the caricature of the neighbor Old man Marley (perhaps a reference to Jacob Marley since this takes place around Christmas????) who is used as a plot device similar to the furnace to show us that even though he can fend for himself, he is still a kid who fears things only a kid would be able to fear. His character tho is not developed at all and his appearance at the end is strange if not inexplicable.
Nice cameo by John Candy here.
Bottom Line – As enjoyable as this was, I think Hughes was much better at creating teenage characters as opposed to younger ones and I’m quite glad he didn’t make too many from a kids perspective. Recommended!
Rating – Globe Worthy
Thanks for letting me participate CPD
Thank YOU for the great review, Rob! : ) I’d have been very disappointed if no one had done Home Alone!!
you know you can always count on me 🙂
Agreed about the John Candy appearance!
Yep. Loved John Candy. : )
Thanks Stephen! 🙂
Nicely done Rob. This is probably my favourite Christmas movie, I can just watch it over and over again!
Really? : ) I like this one a lot too. Christmas Classic for the whole family!
glad you like it Chris!
Reblogged this on MovieRob and commented:
The amazing Table9MUtant at CPD let me partake in her John Hughes Blogathon. Here is my review of Home Alone (1990).
Thanks again for joining in, Rob! : )
Good review, Rob. I agree with every flaw you observe, but also still call this film enough fun that the flaws barely matter. 🙂
Agreed. Well, I think it has fewer flaws than Rob thinks. ; )
I think part of the problem for me here is the fact that I am only watching this as a 40 year old, and not as a 16 year old. I think I would have probably enjoyed it much better then and also probably wouldn’t have been so nit-picky about the technology issues 🙂
I had to pretend for ages that I’d seen Home Alone as I told my mom I went to it with my boyfriend but we actually went parking. Lol!
sounds like the Seinfeld episode about Schindler’s list 🙂
Hope your mom doesn’t read your blog, she might find out things about her daughter that she might be surprised by 🙂
I hope she doesn’t too!!!!! Lol!
I watched this once…. ONCE.
I’m going to go tell everyone that you’re MAINSTREAM!!!!!
who are you? Joe Piscopo from Johnny Dangerously???
Nice work and well done for giving some love to Candy. If you get chance take a look at the review I did for Tom at Digital Shortbread.
Agree on the love for Candy…
I’ll go have a look now!
I’ll take a look.
Great review Rob!
Yep! I’m glad someone did Home Alone. Thought no one would! : )
😀 So were all the movies finally snapped up?
There are, I think, only four left over. But about 12 I’m waiting on so I hope they come in. : ) If it comes to it, as it’s only four left, I may end up doing them myself someday just to say we did them ALL! That would be awesome. But I’d have to do them after the blogathon.
🙂 That sounds awesome!
Which four remain?
Only Savage Islands, Dennis, Reach The Rock & New Port South. So all very obscure except Dennis, which I saw years ago. I could re-watch that at least! : )
Hahahaha shout if they don’t get taken, will help you!
T9M, I have watched 4 of my 6 so far, so I will send you my reviews as soon as I get them done. I know, I know!!
If you want me to do more, let me know
Thanks, Rob! It’s great you grabbed so many of the remaining ones! : ) The last ones are very obscure – I’d never even heard of three of them.
your call!! you decide if you want me to do some of them
Hmm… You’re way too nice! ; ) Hey, you can look into seeing if you’re able to even get a hold of them if you want! I doubt the availability is that great, other than for Dennis.
Is Dennis, Dennis the Menace? I’ll take that one and Nate and Hayes (the real title of Savage Island) unfortunately, the other two sound interesting, but I can’t seem to find them.
Awww give it that Oscar rating! Lol. 😉 Nice review, Rob. This could be my very favorite John Hughes film. It’s just a lot of fun. Glad you seem to have enjoyed it more after a second viewing!
I was surprised he gave it a pretty high rating after a lukewarm review. It’s a Christmas Classic, Rob! Lol ; )
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