A young boy’s Christmas wish comes true when he wakes up to an empty house, a house filled to capacity the night before. Home Alone opens in total disarray as a family of fifteen scrambles in preparation for a vacation in Paris. Feeling overlooked, young Kevin acts out in frustration, resulting in his being banished to the attic. Before he’s shut away, Kevin exclaims to his mother that he wished he didn’t have a family; she’s left hurt, he’s furious. The following morning, the family wakes and hurriedly makes their way to the airport, accidentally leaving Kevin behind.
Kevin’s wish has seemingly come true when he finds the family gone, leaving him to his own devices. His sensation of freedom is short lived though, as feelings of dread and loneliness set in, further agitated by the introduction of two burglars eyeballing his house. As the story progresses, its surreal qualities emerge with the use of asides, slapstick comedy, and cartoon contrived tactics. The evolution of our little protagonist is expedited as he progresses from an invariable brat to scrappy hero, outsmarting the burglars at every turn and dazzling the audience with his ingenuity. Retrospectively, and in re-watching this childhood staple as an adult, once overlooked ideals of loneliness and forgiveness are made all the more apparent while not losing nostalgic triggers.
Though somewhat minimized in comparison to the overarching action between the boy and burglars, one would be remiss in neglecting to acknowledge the message of hurt and healing. The momentum of this tale is anchored by the approach of Christmas Day, notoriously known as a day of giving, family, and memory. A backdrop as such does well in adding to the heart-clench factor. The touching subplot of scary neighbor turned wounded Good Samaritan, poetically bleeds into the reconciliation between Kevin and his mother. Coming full circle, Kevin makes one last wish – this time, to have his family back, regretting his initial desire. A classic, Home Alone encapsulates the surging feelings many face during the holiday season, keeping it both contemporary and timeless – a story to return to time and time again.
A Beacon transplant having moved to town two years ago. With a background in photography, literature, and a fondness of nature she does well in keeping busy in this bustling little community.