Welcome to this blog of my film reviews. Some have been drafted carefully on paper, others I have sat and typed. I'm going to make it clear right now that I don't expect you to agree with my (re)views, or to like my style of writing. However, I want my views to be just out there and open, as a person who wishes to express himself from deep within. Feel free to comment and debate with me, but I do ask that you are civil and not harsh, as any comments which are basically swear words and insults will automatically be deleted. Also any text that is in orange (and often bold) is a Hyperlink to either a source, or a previous post for background reference.
Monday, 27 September 2010
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
Set a year after the 1990 original, the film sees the McCallister family heading to Florida for Christmas. Kevin (Macaulay Culkin), however, gets seperated from the family at the airport and ends up in New York. Having been looking after his father's (John Heard) bag he finds his cash and credit cards and checks into the Plaza Hotel and has a great time without the family. However, Harry (Joe Pesci) and Marv (Daniel Stern) have escaped from prison and are in New York, and it's up to Kevin to stop them robbing the cash from the town's biggest toy store, which is set to go to a children's hospital, and the two crooks want revenge for the last time they crossed Kevin.
Let's get it out of the way that there are couple of good things about this film. There are a few good gags - Kevin walking around New York splashing the cash like an adult in a kid's body is quite amusing to watch, and especially as it causes vast amount of frustration for the Plaza's manager (Tim Curry). The fact that, like the original, Kevin uses videos, dummies and, new to this film, a recording of his Uncle Frank (Gerry Bamman) shouting, to scare off adults like the Plaza's manager is also quite funny to watch, particularly when they have horrified reactions and run screaming in a very farcical manner.
There are a lot more drawbacks to the film. Most of the film is a rehash of the original. Kevin gets in a fight with older sibling Buzz (Devin Ratray) resulting in him being sent to bed early, his family oversleep and have to dash for the plane, Kevin ends up on his own, and loves it, gets scared by a local old coot (Roberts Blossom's Old Man Marley in the original, and Brenda Fricker's pigeon lady in this), before befriending them after hearing their back story, and crosses Harry and Marv and leads them into a house full of booby traps (in this film his Uncle Rob's house which is being renovated while Rob and family are in Paris) that he prepared. The climactic chase through the booby-trapped house is actually really sickening to watch. The amount of pain Harry and Marv are put through is a lot worse than the pain in the original. In this series of misfortunes you can actually hear the bones crunch and crack as they get battered, which will make you wince and put a lump in your throat. Cartoon violence is great fun in a cartoon, but when it happens to live action flesh and bone it is horrible to watch. There is also nothing childish or innocent about Kevin now he's older and now he's just a cocky kid, who's one step away from ADHD.
In short this is a very disappointing film, especially after the lovely original, and is almost enough to put you off cartoon violence. After watching this give it a few days then watch some Simpsons and Looney Tunes and you should be able to appreciate the beauty of cartoon violence again.
Stars: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern, John Heard, Catherine O'Hara, Brenda Fricker, Tim Curry, Gerry Bamman, Terrie Snell, Devin Ratray, Rob Schneider, Eddie Bracken, Hillary Wolf, Maureen Elisabeth Shay, Mike Maronna, Jedidiah Cohen, Senta Moses, Daiana Campeanu, Kieran Culkin, Anna Slotky.
People's Choice Award: Favorite Comedy Motion Picture (tied with Sister Act).