Christmas Movie Countdown: #3
This could not have been a better mix of plot, direction, writing, music, acting and casting. A kid getting bugged by his parents is a common enough occurrence but being alone in the house while having to defend it from burglars just makes the story all the sweeter.
Home Alone was directed by Chris Columbus, who also directed the first two Harry Potter movies, amongst others, and written by the late John Hughes. I would have to say that John Hughes' writing has made a pretty significant impact on my life and I'm sure it has for you as well. The music was done by legendary composer John Williams. You all know his credentials but just so you know he's won 5 Oscars and along with composer Alfred Newman (uncle of Randy Newman of Toy Story fame) is tied for second in Oscar nominations with 45. The only person who has more nominations is Walt Disney himself.
IMDb gives a pretty nice summary so I won't mess with it:
An 8-year-old boy, who is accidentally left behind while his family flies to France for Christmas, has to defend his home against idiotic burglars.
Macaulay Culkin was perfect for the role, probably being cast due to his involvement in Uncle Buck a Hughes film made a year earlier. For me, I think Culkin to be somewhat of an odd character these days but that's just because I can only see him as Kevin McCallister. Although, he has to have had something going for him since he dated Mila Kunis for 8 years. Casting Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern as Harry and Marv made for an absolutely hysterical pairing of two dim-witted robbers. Also, we have the great Catherine O'Hara as Kate McCallister (probably the first time I saw her as an actress) and John Heard as Peter McCallister. Lastly we have Culkin's co-star in Uncle Buck, John Candy, in the small part of Gus Polinski. Candy was a lovable oaf and is another great comedian that died much too young.
This movie has it all. It has dramatic parts, plenty of comedy, it's family friendly (for the most part) and it never fails to make me laugh, cry, and be thankful for the love of family and friends, especially around the holidays. I'm sorry for those who feel that this should be number one but I have ever so slightly different tastes in favourites.