Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)


Dave’s 3-Word Review:
Re-hashed too much.

I’m not really a huge stickler for “Hollywood sequels”, or, movies made just to make money but don’t really have any true connection to the original. Honestly, I like them sometimes, and I don’t find myself hung up over the fact that how much they aren’t the original. That’s just distracting, comparing the two like that all the time. However, when it comes to Home Alone, a film franchise that they’ve stretched to five films…I stop my “collection” status at the second film. That way, they are both Chris Columbus films, and more importantly, both Macaulay Culkin as Kevin.

It has been one year since the incident in the first film, and Kevin is set to actually go on vacation with his family – this time to the warm state of Florida. Well, Kevin is still a misunderstood troublemaker and once again wishes to have another holiday alone, and of course he ends up getting his wish. Even though his family didn’t forget him, they were in a hurry and didn’t notice when he didn’t board the plane. Instead, he boarded the plane to New York. Like the first film, he played around and had fun using his dad’s money while being in one of the biggest cities in the world. However, when news comes around the Wet Bandits from the first movie escaped prison, Kevin is in a world of hurt. How will he escape their plot of vengeance and how in the world will he get back home?

I guess you can say that this film follows the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” routine, because the movie is seriously the same exact thing. Same people, same things happen constantly, same bad guys, same joke per joke, same pranks that Kevin plays, same sort of scary but nice character that is placed to give hope to Kevin, same bad guys…the only real difference is setting. So instead of his own house as his playground, he has the whole city of New York, or rather – a toy store to his aunt and uncles house who also live in New York, to which…most of the movie actually plays out in.

Because the “pranking” section of the first movie typically is seen as the coolest and most iconic part, this film decided to use more. The first film had something like 15-25 minutes of Kevin using his smarts to booby trap his house and attack the villains, and that’s a good thing. That allowed for some really great character and story development. The booby trapping in this primarily started at the halfway point, and lasted nearly an hour, but throughout the film, Kevin was doing tricks as well, so to me, it seemed like they really wanted to push that aspect. Not really super needed. Cool, but I wanted more story.

The pranks themselves were unfortunately a re-imagining of the same thing. It’s like the same make and model of a car, just a different color. You got Harry and Marv coming up to the house and getting hurt several times before making it in. There was sticky pranks, heaving objects falling from the sky pranks, fire-on-head pranks, swinging paint can on the stairs pranks, and all of this which seems way too familiar to the first, as if they couldn’t think of any new tricks to add to the mix. I understand using the classics, but it’s only been a year. Think of something new. In that regard, I’d think that maybe even Home Alone 3 had some advantages, but not by much.

Even though it was all pretty much the same thing, the film is still done very well regardless. The actors are what makes this film gold. It may feel a bit too re-hashed and unoriginal, but as a movie on its own, it’s not bad. It’s more like an alternate version of the first film. If people saw this film first, they’d probably like it better than the first, same vice versa. I really respect that, because it tells me the movie on its own is actually really good. Just…not in the sense that you can watch both back to back and enjoy them.

The Good:
On its own, this is another great holiday classic with amazing characters, sets, and story progression. It’s a very memorable film as well, regardless of how similar it is to the first film.

The Bad:
The film is more or less just an alternate version of Home Alone. Same people, same story progression, same jokes, same pranks, same almost everything. The only difference is setting. Ultimately, I just think they could have changed something other than setting to make the movie its own thing…It needed something more.

Memorable Quote:
Old guy on TV
. Merry Christmas, you filthy animal.


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