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Home Alone 2: Lost in New York

January 9, 2021

Home Alone (1992)
Director: Chris Columbus
Actors: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York Review | Movie - Empire

Synopsis: Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) once again finds himself left behind by his parents who are going on an extended family holiday at Christmas. Kevin ends up taking the wrong flight to New York, instead of Florida, and passes some days in the Big Apple alone, once again having to avoid the attentions of the crooks he saw off the previous Christmas at his family home.

Review: The law of diminishing returns hangs over this tired and cynical trotting out of the Home Alone formula so shortly after its previous, highly enjoyable predecessor. While there was clear commercial value in quickly crafting a sequel to the first film, John Hughes and Chris Columbus left out the entertainment quotient and any semblance of originality this time around.

While setting the story in iconic New York seems permissible enough, the way Kevin moves so confidently and seamlessly around locations hitherto unknown to him to enact his ultimate ruse over the robbers seems so cartoonish and removed from reality that it dissipates any real investment in the events of the story. And it sorely lacks the situational specificity and just the vague whiff of ‘this could actually happen’ from the previous film.

The action set piece where Kevin traps the robbers was left to a short, final coup de grace in the first film, but here it becomes an elongated and increasingly unfunny scenario whereby it feels less slapsticky and wacky, and actually comes across as quite sadistic: Kevin simply throws bricks at his would-be assailants at one point in the scene. Even the addition of Brenda Fricker as this film’s seeming spooky weirdo who ends up being a supposedly three-dimensional boon to Kevin’s escapades feels a huge step-down from the moving subplot about the gruff next-door neighbour in the first film. All in all, this is one of those examples where a hasty sequel of an unlikely success story was not a good idea. And Donald Trump’s in it as well – as if to confer further status on it as a movie turkey! (January 2021)

One Comment leave one →
  1. May 7, 2021 5:38 pm

    I actually thought this was the only somewhat okay and tolerable Home Alone sequel. The third one, however, is a big turkey. I never watched the fourth and fifth movies, and I’m probably not going to. I didn’t even know there was a fourth or fifth one, until a few years ago.

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