Greg Tyler

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Christmas 2013: Home Alone: The Holiday Heist

Part of the series Christmas 2013

Stop it. Please, for the love of God, don't make any more Home Alone films.

Christmas spirit

★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Finn Baxter, our latest child hero, is left alone because he'd rather play a video game that go with his parents to an office Christmas party. His horrible obsession with this game forms the entire plot of the film, at one point using a search for controller batteries to lead him to a secret room. Meanwhile, at the party, all the waitresses are young girls dressed in short red dresses and red-and-white-striped stockings. These antitheses of Christmas spirit could be used to poke fun at the modern world, but instead they're just played straight and it's really weird.

There is a heartfelt moment when Finn talks to a college student he's playing his video game with and finds out the guy is going to spend Christmas alone. Finn seems horrified for a short while and offers to keep the guy company, which is quite sweet, but then he gets caught up on ghosts again.

Ho-ho-who's in it?

Bill Turnbull from BBC Breakfast

No, BBC Breakfast fans, not that Bill Turnbull.

★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Not Macaulay Culkin, that's for sure! (Though he is 33 now, so that would be a very different movie.) Indeed, also no Joe Pesci and no Daniel Stern. 22 years after the first Home Alone, Holiday Heist shares little with the original, save name and concept.

However, getting a star in this category is Malcolm McDowell, taking the role of criminal boss. McDowell, who deserves to be in much, much better content than this, does a great job of being an affable thief and generally delivers his lines wonderfully. Incidentally, if you never watched Heroes, he excels as Linderman (another criminal mastermind).

Another honourable mention is due to Bill Turnbull, who plays Finn's video gaming college friend and got the only two laughs of the film. We like him.

Family fun

★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ Eurgh. Whilst I wouldn't recommend the damn thing to anyone, I guess it should score some points in the family fun category. Like the previous films, the slapstick comedy is pretty family friendly and harmless (in a manner of speaking). And, again as before, the criminals are extremely non-threatening, useless goons. But if that's the sort of family fun you're looking for, just watch the original.

Jingle Bells

☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ There are some carol singers ( 1) and McFly's cover of Deck the Halls (-1). Yeah, don't bother watching this for the music.

Overall

★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Cries

Me reenacting the scream face from Home Alone

Finn Baxter's page on the Home Alone Wiki has a section labelled "Personality" which is just blank. That is incredibly accurate.

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