Wednesday, December 21, 2016

My Review of Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1992)

Written by John Hughes
Directed by Chris Columbus

Kevin: "You can mess with a lot of things, but you can't mess with kids on Christmas."

This probably won't be a controversial (or maybe it will, depending on who reads this), but this is one of those sequels that in my opinion manages to edge out the original. There's also about three other sequels but like most people, I'd prefer not to acknowledge their overall existence.

On the surface of it, Home Alone 2: Lost In New York isn't actually that much different from the first movie, except for the bit where Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) winds up in the city that never sleeps without his family but it's not long before he's checking into the Plaza with an eccentric staff (including Tim Curry) on his tail and a reunion with the world's least competent thieves, Harry (Joe Pesci) and Marv (Daniel Stern) to boot.

Of course, there's a nice view of New York in this movie and the place never looks more beautiful onscreen (and I imagine in general) than it does when it's filmed at Christmas with plenty of festive and wintry imagery. If you're going to get 'lost' in a place during this time of year, then New York certainly wouldn't be the worst place to be lost in.

Seeing Kevin outsmart the hotel staff is amusing as is his second confrontation with Harry and Marv. You'd think after the first movie, they would've wised up to his antics but yet again, they become victim to a barrage of painful pranks that realistically should've killed the both of them on the spot. This kind of over heightened violence though is too funny to watch and there's something rather glorious in seeing the two of them being outwitted by Kevin for a second year running.

Of course amongst all the cartoon violence (the scene earlier in the movie with the piano teacher getting hit with a wooden tree cracks me up), the movie also has a lot of heart to it as well. Kevin's motivations for going after Harry and Marv was to stop them robbing a toy store and the friendship he struck up with Brenda Fricker's Bird Lady was lovely (though exactly like the one he struck up with the snow guy from the first movie). There was also the usual falling out and making up with his family which still managed to be effective second time around.

- I loved the use of an inflatable clown, that Talkboy and Angels With Even Filthier Souls to wreck havoc on the hotel staff.
- A recently elected President makes a brief cameo in this movie but don't let that deter your enjoyment.
- I loved the music in this movie, especially Darlene Love's All Alone On Christmas.
- The turtle doves were created for the movie by John Perry, known for his sculptures of sea life. I thought they were a lovely touch for this one.

In some ways, this is a sequel that's almost close to being a remake of the first movie but saying that, I just think Home Alone 2: Lost In New York is the better movie and definitely a recommended movie to watch during this Christmas week.

Rating: 9 out of 10

No comments: