“Home Alone” is one of the few movie going experiences of my childhood that I vividly remember. I was 9 when this movie came out, and at the time I found it hilarious. And who wouldn’t? You have a lippy little kid who takes on two moronic bandits by booby trapping his house.
Watching it again this holiday season I found that the movie holds up quite well. Of course now I appreciate the supporting performances more as an adult. When you have a cast that includes Catherine O’Hara, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern and even the great John Candy, you are in for a real treat.
We all know the plot by now. Little Kevin McCalister, played by Macaulay Culkin, is left home alone at Christmas when his family mistakenly leaves for Paris without him. During his time alone he gets in to lots of funny shenanigans but finds himself in real danger when his house is being cased by a pair of hapless burglars.
The two crooks are played by Pesci and Stern. When they get to Kevin’s house they find it rigged with traps that include blow torches, dangerous ice, dive bombing paint cans and other humiliating surprises.
I did laugh loudly at most of the gags and traps but it did occur to me how reckless this kind of filmmaking can be. This is intended as a family film so should it really include people stepping on nails and having their hands and skulls burnt to a crisp?