Keep the change, you filthy animals.
BQB here with a review of the latest Home Alone sequel.
Little Archie Yates stole the show as Jojo’s BFF slash fellow sufferer in the Hitler Youth Nazi Scout Corps in Jojo Rabbit, so it was only a matter of time before Disney put him in something. That something was a Home Alone knockoff, none of which have been as good as the original but if you’re looking for a fun diversion to watch with the kids, you could do worse than this movie.
Here, Yates plays Max Mercer, a little boy who, you guessed it, is accidentally left home alone when his large, hard to count family runs off to Tokyo without him. Cue the various overdone cliches and homages to the original Macauley Culkin film of old.
Naturally, bandits must invade the home, which the lad defends at all costs with a series of traps that cause cartoonish violence in the film (though in real life, they’d leave said intruders dead or vegetablized). Here though, the home invasion is all over a misunderstanding about a rare German doll worth $200,000. Parents Pam and Jeff McKenzie (Rob Delaney and Kimmy Schmidt’s Ellie Kemper) think Max swiped it and in so doing, robbed them of their chance to keep their home from being foreclosed on. Max says he would never swipe a doll that ugly, or anything for that matter. In the end, it will all somehow be sorted out.
I’ll give the film kudos for finding a way to make the home invading crooks more likeable/understandable. I’ll tell you, back when the original came out in 1991 – well, it didn’t matter if you were black or white, male or female, gay or straight, or a member of any of the various religions, literally everyone at the time was united in the belief that if crooks dared to cross the threshold of a home that wasn’t theirs with the intention of stealing, they deserved any form of hilarious comic punishment a little boy was able to dish out. Alas, today, people worry more about those crooks, their bad childhoods, how it was really society’s fault that they became criminals and do the McAllister’s really need such a big house and so much stuff? Why can’t they share?
There’s a cameo from the original film’s mean big brother Buzz (Devin Ratray.) Unfortunately, the cameo is kind of pointless as it sort of leads you to think Buzz is going to bumble his way through the entire film as a bumbling cop who fails to foil the break in plot, but then he sort of just disappears and goes nowhere. A little more Buzz would have gone a long way.
STATUS: Shelf worthy. IMO, it reminds me of a glorified Hallmark film. I do wonder why with all the money and talent in the world to draw from, why Hollywood can’t bang out more hits like the original Home Alone…i.e. a movie that is funny, unique and gives us an experience like we’re seeing something fun for the first time. Ah, but maybe therein lies the rub. It’s all been done before.
Stream on Disney Plus.