troperville

tools

toys


main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Headscratchers: Home Alone
  • Why, oh, why do Kate and Peter still allow Frank inside their house ? He's probably the grouchiest, most cynical, selfish, member of the Mccallister family, not to mention the way he treats them.
    • If there's a trope for "we put up with his crap because he's family," it applies here.
      • Get out of here you nosy pervert or I'm gonna slap you silly! Oh, you're cooking, Frankie!
  • Why do all of the movies take place around Christmastime? Isn't that redundant?
  • In Home Alone 2, Harry clearly states that he has a gun on him. After Kevin takes a picture of them robbing the toy store, gets on his uncle's roof and starts chucking bricks, why doesn't Harry just shoot him, enter the building somehow, and get the camera himself?
    • I imagine it's because you shouldn't be fooled by the "One's Stupid, One's Smart" duo thing going on there - the Wet Bandits are both stupid; Marv's just stupider. That's my take, anyway. Alternatively, Harry might not have wanted to attract attention from firing a gun on the streets, and if I recall correctly, when he does pull out his gun, it had no silencer. And he was at the edge of his patience. I'm sure if Harry might've gotten a few of those bricks, though, it might have changed.
      • He was in New York. A gunshot wouldn't attract attention.
      • New York is not Somalia.
    • If he shot at Kevin from the street, it might have attracted attention and made it harder to get away unnoticed by the time he got inside, got the camera, and got out. He didn't have the gun immediately handy when Kevin first appeared at the toy store; he mostly took chase with the intent of shooting him.
    • He probably only had a handful of bullets and wanted to be sure he had a clear shot.
    • It might also be a question of morals. Remember: Harry and Marv are first and foremost thieves. Their method of choice is usually to break into peoples' houses while they're not there, which effectively minimizes the risk of anyone getting hurt. So, sure, threatening Kevin, why not? But actually killing him? That's on a whole different scale of evil.
      • Exactly. As we all know, Even Evil Has Standards
      • But they seemed quite willing to kill him at the end of the first movie. True, their time in prison might have given them a chance to cool off, but then why did they go after him in the second film even before he ruined their heist? What were they planning to do, give him a wedgie and let him go?
      • In the first film, they wanted to put him through his own traps, not kill him. If those traps didn't cause any serious bodily harm to Harry and Marv (since in the Home Alone universe, people can survive almost anything), they probably wouldn't have killed Kevin, even though he was smaller than them.
    • In any case, just because Harry had a gun doesn't mean he was any proficient at using it.
      • Or willing to use it. Just because you can hold a weapon in your hand doesn't mean you're cold blooded enough to shoot a 9 year old between the eyes.
    • He would have to have been a pretty decent shot to produce, aim and fire the weapon at a small, distant and moving target in the dark before Kevin ducks. Even if he managed it, there's still the matter of him being in a highly populated area and the shot would have attracted attention. Finally, they're on foot and won't be able to get very far before the police start searching the area for the crack-shot who just executed a nine year old. Remember the first movie - Marv is stupid enough to leave a trail of evidence everywhere he goes, Harry less so.
  • What kind of asshole buys themselves a 1st class airline ticket and then sticks their kids back in Coach?
    • My parents. Joking aside, Coach isn't a big deal for kids, who don't need the extra legroom and don't get the free booze. As long as they behave themselves it makes perfect sense.
      • Assuming your kids ARE the sort to behave themselves....
      • Which the family in the film really aren't (well, large numbers of kids are often boisterous together.) Plus, it makes the logistics of their journey just that little bit harder (neither incident might have happened without it).
      • The parents in this movie did seem like pretty big jerks. When the mom actually asks "Should we feel guilty being in 1st class while our kids are in coach" the dad very bluntly says, "Nah."
    • Are you kidding? The kids are probably thrilled they don't have to sit with their stupid, boring parents. Not to mention the fact that they're getting to fly in a plane, since, as the dad says, "The only flying I did when I was a kid was in the back of the family's station wagon, and it wasn't going to France."
    • This is more film logistics than anything else. Having the parents in first class limited the number of people they'd have to show (kids working hours, perhaps?) For all we know, they got first class upgrades due to the sheer amount of traveling they were doing.
  • Why are the twin towers edited out of the New York skyline in TV reruns of Home Alone 2? Is it still Too Soon? Why, when it's very obvious that Kevin is running around in a pre-Guliani New York? (Proof: The rows and rows of street vendors—now you have to have a permit from the City.)
    • As I recall, Kevin's entire tour of New York City is cut, presumably for time constraints.
      • Haven't seen it in years, but I'm pretty sure I remember Kevin standing on top of one of the towers, looking through one of those tourist binocular things, so it was probably cut because of that.
      • I just watched this movie on TV and as of this edit(September 2010) the scene with the Twin Towers was left intact.
      • Might be different here in the UK - But it was on last weekend - 04/06/11 - And the Twin Towers and Kevin's entire tour around New York was still in there.
      • As of December 24, 2011, the rerun did show the scene of Kevin on the Twin Towers, too.
  • The McCallisters are rich. Presumably, they are insured. Is all that trouble really necessary to protect their material goods?
    • No, but Kevin doesn't know that. And insured or not, having your house broken into and looted is a MASSIVE inconvenience. Given the choice between driving off a burglar and letting him take your stuff and wreck your house, most people choose to drive off the burglar.
    • It's the principle of the thing. Getting spit on isn't very inconveniencing, either, but if somebody spat on you you would still go through the trouble of fighting them, right?
      • Heck no!
      • OK then, more likely, you'd probably feel like knocking them out.
  • Home Alone 4. What kind of parent completely disregards the fact that their youngest is being bullied and picked on by his older siblings and acts as if it's HIS fault? Many kids who deal with this wish they were only children, but I still don't think that the line, "Well, maybe you should go to your room and think about what you do have," in regards to the boy's unhappiness should have been in a supposedly family friendly movie. His mother should really start thinking about social worker visits.
    • Sadly, this is often Truth in Television. When my mom and I watched this when I was kid, I felt sorry for Kevin. She felt he was being a brat who got what he deserved. I'm an only child, but when I was little, my cousins were often around. They could verbally abuse me, take control of all the toys, and once, even hit me hard enough to leave a bruise; they never got in trouble. Whenever I fought back in any way, I did get in trouble. And then my mother wondered why she had to hear about all the years of bullying I suffered in school from some classmates of mine in the grocery store instead of her own daughter...
      • You should have handled it the way Legendary Temple Basketball Coach John Chaney did. Wood Shop. Mallet. Bully's head. He didn't connect on #3, but traded 5 days of suspension for the bully never bothering him ever again.
    • I haven't seen 3 or 4, but at least in the first movie, Kevin was being a brat who got what he deserved. I don't really blame him, since for a 9-year-old, being assigned to sleep with the bed-wetter and not getting the right kind of pizza are tragedies of the highest order. However, it's hard to blame Mom for her actions either: she sent Kevin to bed early after he started a food fight (pretty standard punishment), and when he complained about sharing a bed with Fuller, she promised to take care of it (which she did).
      • In the second movie Kevin's complaints were justified. Buzz was picking on him unprovoked and conned the family with a fake apology. In fact, I haven't seen the second movie in a while, but it borders on Karma Houdini.
      • IMHO, he was pretty justified in the first movie to feel put upon as well. He pushed Buzz into the counter and knocked over a couple of glasses and everyone else caused havoc when they flailed around getting up, knocking more stuff over, to see what was happening, which they blamed on Kevin. I always thought they were pretty terrible parents.
  • In the first film, did Kevin's parents try to call him (from France) after they realised they stranded him?
    • Yes. Yes they did. They even called the Chicago Police to check on Kevin, but Kevin was hiding from Old Man Marley. As for their home, a windstorm knocked over the power and phone lines. The power was able to be reset, but the phone line stayed down for a while.
    • He was hiding because he had just encountered Old Man Marley outside of his house and hid back under the bed in a panic. Keep in mind, he had just come out from hiding under the bed in the previous scene when he glimpsed the burglars. So it's perfectly logical for a 10-year-old who has just seen people trying to break into the house and then someone he believes to be a murderous old man (thanks to Buzz's story) to be scared witless and refuse to check the door.
    • The police shouldn't have given up that easily, though. Especially since they know someone is missing and last seen around that house.
      • It's implied they're not taking the report very seriously. Could be Police Are Useless, but one supposes that there's also potentially reason for it. "Ma'am, could you come to the station to file this report about your missing son?" "Well, no, I'm in France." "... Right."
  • Why does Kevin need to sleep in a guest room, in his own house?
    • Because the house is totally full with guests, and his parents decided that the uncles should have the bed while Kevin slept elsewhere, it happens.
    • It also goes along with the above theory that his parents are just jerks. If you notice at the end of 2, they keep the master bedroom in the suite to themselves and make everyone else bunk in one (I think) two bed room.
    • The parents get the master bedroom, the aunt and uncle sleep in another room and the kids bunk in the living room, again the kids probably saw this as the coolest thing ever as they could stay up late, watch TV, and pretty much do as they please while mom and dad snooze.
      • Also the kids did get a bedroom (that they all had to share) in the suite and the hotel even gave them extra cots. Fuller got the rather large bed to himself be cause he's a bedwetter and no one wanted to share with him.
      • What's really silly about this arrangement is that Fuller should have been given a cot, while two or three other kids shared the large, luxurious bed. After all, if he wets the bed, a cot is MUCH easier to take care of.
      • For that matter, the hotel probably has a cot or two specifically designed for bedwetting kids. Why force them to have an entire mattress cleaned?
    • I always gets kicked out of my bedroom when extended family comes to visit. My bedroom is much larger than the others in the house (save for my parents' room), so it only makes sense. I don't think Kevin's parents kicked him out of his room to be spiteful; it was probably just the most logical choice.
    • Yeah, me too, when I was a kid. A grown up relative got my bed, and I got to sleep on an air-mattress on the floor somwhere. I never complained; it was the coolest thing ever, almost like a mini camping trip!
      • When my aunt got married, I also had to sleep in a guestroom while a member of the husband's family got my room. Don't ask, I didn't get why the guy couldn't have just slept in said guestroom, either.
      • I was the one who got my cousin's room last year at Christmas. My aunt likes me better. (In all seriousness, he was 4 days shy of 18, I was 19, and I'm pretty sure he was out partying all night anyways. He didn't care. It's the polite thing to do to try and make your guests comfortable.)
    • A better question might be were all these people complaining about the treatment of the kids ever kids themselves? They're treating some ten-year-old's dream of unsupervised free time in planes and kickass suites like their parent's abandoned them to go shoot puppies or something.
    • Because adults often do that.
    • Because whenever family visits, it's an unwritten rule the person displaced are always the children. The kids always wind up being moved onto other beds or the couch.
    • Also, keep in mind that John Hughes wrote this movie, and he did the same thing to Samantha in Sixteen Candles. In both cases it helps influence a character's motivations and frustrations.
  • Kevin knew he and his family were going on vacation, why was he acting so surprised that everyone was gone? Why didn't he put two & two together?
    • When Kevin has first woken up and everyone's gone, he sees that the cars are still in the garage and (presumably unaware that they used hired transportation) concludes that they can't have gone to the airport.
  • Why would the aftershave burn Kevin's face for the iconic scream scene? There's no way he was shaving, he's eight years old. And also, why would a church be nearly empty on Christmas Eve? That's usually the only time it's full.
    • Shaving with a 90's safety razor isn't hard at all, he's probably watched his dad do it hundreds of times and knows what he's "supposed" to do. He might not even have taken the guard off the razor and just have been pretending, but if the aftershave is old it can still burn his tender boy-skin. The fact that he doesn't take his hands off his face after the burn sinks in just makes it hurt worse.
      • I thought (and still do) that the scream-in-the-mirror scene doesn't make sense, and—even if it did—still wouldn't be funny.
    • It's possible it was simply a choir practice (perhaps for a Christmas Day service), not the actual service.
      • It's just a rehearsal, not an actual service - Old Man Marley says that he's not welcome at the actual choir performance, so he has to see his granddaughter at practice.
    • "Funny-smelling stuff you put on your fa-...COOOOOOOOOLD!" As for the church, almost everyone on Kevin's street was on vacation, and even if there were people on other streets still there, it's possible Evening Mass had ended and Midnight Mass had either not started yet or was not held at that church.
  • In the first film, why wouldn't Kevin, in addition to his veritable torture chamber of a house waiting for the thieves, also call the police the moment they arrived? By the time they even got into the house the police would be on the scene. Granted, this risks some collateral damage if the police then decide to force their way in, but it would still make sense.
    • Kevin was trying to tire them out. Burglars are very likely to escape capture. He wanted them to be knocked out the moment the cops arrive.
    • Does he actually say that anywhere? I thought his only explanation as something along the lines of "I have to protect my home", whcih is fine and makes sense, but calling the cops would have made more sense!
    • Look at it this way. He does call the police eventually. Calling them right away would have messed up his "battle plan".
    • As far as Kevin was concerned, he too was a criminal on the run from the law...the whole toothbrush incident and all (true, the link isn't explicitly made but, if you think about it, it does tie the toothbrush scene in a lot more tightly with the rest of the story). Also, he probably didn't want to draw the authorities' attention to the fact that he "made [his] family disappear" and is now home alone - hence why his plan involves luring the Wet Bandits into his neighbours' house and having the police catch them there.
      • I've been asking the question for years and that was actually probably the best explanation anyone has given so far, right on.
    • One of the unwritten rules of fiction is that people have to do stupid things in order to advance the plot - if Kevin had just called the police, we'd have a maybe 30 minute TV special, no slapstick, and one dull movie.
    • The same reason that his family didn't call him from Paris: his house's phone, and no one else's, had been knocked out and hadn't been repaired yet. Kevin's mom has his aunt call their neighbors when they realize he's missing, but she gets their answering machines (young tropers, an "answering machine" was what we used before voicemail, and it had to be physically hooked up to a phone jack in your house, so if the phone line was down, it couldn't record anything) so their phones were working. How Kevin knew that the phones next door were working but didn't use them until after springing his booby traps, however, is pure plot convenience
      • He called the police from his home. And ordered a pizza. Obviously, the phone lines were fixed at some point.
    • Or, you know, he's an eight year old kid. Normal people don't always do the "rational" thing as it is, but a lot of children don't even have a concept of it. This is not that hard to understand, people, he defends his house because he's not developed enough to go "Gee, let me sit down and think of the absolute most logical thing to do in this situation. Hm, while I am scared of strange adults and earlier felt that I was likely to get in trouble for stealing a toothbrush, and I also probably have some fears about the police taking me away from my home and putting me somewhere since I don't have any adult family members to watch out for me, that would be the course of action most likely to result in a positive outcome. Now perhaps I'll read a theoretical physics book while I wait for the officers to arrive."
  • Where does Marley come from at the end of the first movie? The flooded house isn't his. It would have made more sense to have a quick cutaway to Marley, out salting the sidewalks, spotting Kevin running to the house across the street. As it's filmed, it just seems like he appears from out of nowhere to save Kevin.
    • He just happened to see Kevin and the Wet Bandits run over there. Plain and simple. If we see a cutaway to him it would ruin the suspense. By not showing him we the viewer are led to believe that there is no hope for Kevin.

  • At the beginning of the first movie, the family (which includes 15 people) orders 10 pizzas. Assuming that each has the usual 8 slices, that's 80 slices total, or about 5 slices per person. The McCallisters must be very big eaters.
    • You'd be surprised. Buzz alone could probably put away 7 or more slices.
    • They were planning to leave first thing the next morning, they probably wanted some cold slices around for breakfast.
    • It's possible they simply overestimated how much people actually do eat.
    • Different people also like different toppings. Kevin requested a plain cheese pizza just for himself, but Buzz ate the whole thing - which just confirms how much he can put away.
      • I myself am one of those big eaters, and I'm sixteen - I make homemade pizzas and usually can consume up to 75%-80% of one.
      • I'm also a big eater. I can eat an entire pizza by myself, and when I was about Kevin's age, I could usually eat about 50%-75% of one. So to me, it isn't all that surprising that the McCallisters would order so many pizzas.
    • On a related note, the time between the pizzas being taken into the kitchen and Kevin getting there seems to be about five minutes, give or take a minute. They all stuffed down that much pizza that quickly?
  • In the first movie, the family's inability to find a flight back home so close to Christmas forms a major part of the plot. In the second movie, however, they're somehow able to find a flight from Miami to New York at a moment's notice on Christmas Eve—with enough room for all 13 of them, no less. Plot Hole, anyone?
    • Probably extreme luck - but they were in France in the first movie. I imagine that probably had a lot to do with it.
    • It is extremely easy to get a flight to New York City. There are 3 major airports - Newark in New Jersey, plus LaGuardia Airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, and direct flights to damn near every airport in the US, so finding a connection is cake. As for the first movie, the family did find a flight from France - they got there a whopping 90 seconds after the mother did. Her problem was that she started taking random flights like a crazy person. Scranton? Seriously?
    • The flight the family gets home in the first one highlighted as: "We took the morning flight, remember? The one you didn't want to wait for."
  • I don't see why the police wouldn't have had to interview Kevin. What, did the Wet Bandits not finger this kid who was responsible for all of their inexplicable injuries?
    • Possibly out of pride? "The nine year old was very mean to us, WAAAHH!" Also, if they have Kevin brought in, he's probably going to tell the cops just how close they came to actually killing him. Add attempted murder to the list of charges. And what could they possibly hope to gain from admiting what they went through? Kevin was defending his house from intruders. Theoretically he could do anything up to and including shooting them and get away with it.
    • Would they actually be able to point out that Kevin assaulted him to the police without getting convicted or even taken seriously for that matter? "Hey, this Jerk Ass kid assaulted us and almost killed us! I mean, we only tried to break into his house, trespassed on the property where he lives, steal his stuff, intended to harm him, had stolen stuff from his neighbours' houses in the past, vandalised their property when we flooded their basement...Arrest him" Are you seriously able to do that?!? If I were a judge and got a case like that, the first words out of my mouth would be "Frivolous Lawsuit".
      • OP here - not to bring a lawsuit - but finally the police would be aware this kid was home on his own.
      • It still just sound weird. They broke onto the property that he lives, I don't see why he would be in trouble...however his parents, on the other hand mistakenly left him alone
      • No one said anything about Kevin being in trouble - an interview is just to gather information.
      • Yeah, but the police don't know anything about Kevin being involved if the Wet Bandits don't mention it (for reasons already expressed here) and Old Man Marley keeps quiet. So far Old Man Marley hasn't felt the need to mention Kevin being home alone to the police...so what else?
  • What kind of parent gets on a plane without visually, personally confirming that all his or her kids have gotten on it first?
    • Meh, chalk it up to sleep deprivation and the rushing to get on the plane. They did count the kids.
      • Notice one of the neighbours' kids was in the car and was counted by one of the relatives. (And the child was dressed in such a way as from the back he looked quite like Kevin.)
      • The point stands. They counted the kids when leaving the house, yes, but what if a kid got lost during the mad dash through the airport, or headed to the wrong gate (which actually happened in 2,) or got otherwise separated from the group? Any decent parent would have reached the boarding gate, stood by to watch all the kids come aboard, and THEN get on the plane him/herself. The McAllisters even had the time to reach the counter, and cheer with the rest of the family before getting on the plane, surely they could have spared a quick glance to their children.
      • I think you're Monday morning quarterbacking. (Or is it Tuesday morning quarterbacking now? Meh, whatever.) Most parents would assume that if they counted their children once before embarking to the airport and were keeping the whole group together through subsequent events, and there were no problems such as an extra ticket (remember that Kevin's coincidentally got thrown away without being noticed), that every child had made the trip. It's easy to say that the characters should have taken this one extra step that would have prevented everything that followed (and perhaps 50% of every headscratchers page is made up of this), but at some point you have to realize that the characters don't have your outside perspective and have a very different idea of what makes sense and what they need to do than someone sitting and watching everything that's happening from the outside. Yes, the parents could have been helicoptering around every one of their children as much as physically possible... and some set of even wilder coincidences would have transpired to see that Kevin got left behind anyway, and then the parents would have been criticized for not taking some extra step that kept that series of events from happening.
    • Parental Obliviousness. I assumed it was just normal for parents to forget the small person if they were mad at them or were small enough to blend in. A couple times, I got left home alone when my parents went to dinner and didn't notice me.
    • And to be fair, the parents did learn this lesson by the second movie—Kate tried to make sure she saw everyone get on the plane to Miami, but the ticket agents forced her to board before she could, since the plane was about to take off—although I suppose she still could have checked for everyone after they got on the plane. However, if she did, there would be no movie.
  • The pizza guy who brings the pizza to Kevin thinks he has been shot at, so why doesn't he call the cops? (If he did, surely they would have showed up in time to stop the robbers, which would spoil the plot, but it doesn't make sense that he wouldn't.)
    • i think he sold weed along his deliveries and figured he'd get in trouble too.
      • You answered your own question - it's fiction. If it will advance the plot, people will have to do stupid things.
    • He probably realised that he had been pranked a minute later after figuring out how absurd the scenario was.
      • And it's not like the "gunfire" ripped off the pizza boy. Kevin did pay for the pizza, even if the tip wasn't impressive. ("Cheapskate.")
  • Why doesn't Kevin get counseling for his ordeal? Surely the police would have notified his parents.
    • The police didn't know anything about him Kevin because old Man Marley took him home before the cops got there. When Kevin called the police he pretended he was his neighbor.
    • Also, aside from getting a bit scared Kevin didn't really suffer much in the way of psychological trauma. Nobody hurt him, he didn't hurt himself, he was able to satisfy his needs (i.e. he didn't go without food or water while his parents were gone), and he seems to spend most of the movie having a grand old time without his stupid boring parents or his stupid annoying brother around. At most, he was probably a bit lonely towards the end. But he made a new friend in Old Man Marley so that only lasted a little while anyway.
    • What do you expect, a twenty minute epilogue showing everything that happened to the characters after the end of the movie?
  • When Kevin was in the store buying the tooth brush, he was scared away when Old Man Marley entered. This was an understandable reaction for a kid with a wild imagination, but did he need the tooth brush that bad? He could have avoided the cop chase had he just dropped the tooth brush and ran.
    • Kevin didn't think about what he was doing. He was scared and took off without thinking. If I remember correctly, after he made it outside, he looked down at the toothbrush in shock - he didn't know that he had taken it.
    • Tunnel vision - he got scared, didn't notice he had it. It ahpens all the time.
    • On a related note: why did the lady assume he was stealing the toothbrush (before he started running)? For all she knew, he was going to put it back on the shelf (perhaps because it wasn't ADA-approved), or get something else that he needed to buy.
      • If he was just doing something like that, he wouldn't have been backing away nervously. He'd have turned around and walked off. The lady at first thought he was just confused when he started backing away ("Oh, you pay for that here"), then began to grow concerned that he was trying something ("Hold on, you have to pay for that"), and then when he broke out into a run she felt her suspicions were confirmed.
  • Can we agree that no matter how much of a nuisance Kevin is, he doesn't deserve the family-wide wrath he gets in the beginning of the first film; specifically, when Uncle Frank calls him a jerk and the rest of the family glares at him in silent agreement? My mom says that no matter what kind of mess any of us could made, if her brother called out her kid like that, her ire would be at the uncle, not her child, because no one talks to her child like that. Mrs. McAllister, on the other hand, is perfectly OK with her brother chewing out her kid in front of everyone, apparently.
    • Fair point about the mom, but I don't remember her being in the room when the whole thing went down. As for whether he deserved the nasty looks he got, try to look at it from the family's perspective. Kevin had been annoying the crap out of all of them with his constant whining and complaining while they were all busting their butts to get ready for this big family trip. They were already irritated at life in general and Kevin in specific. Then Kevin goes and has a temper tantrum that wrecks the whole damn kitchen because his brother ate the last piece of cheese pizza before he could. We sympathize with Kevin because he's the protagonist, but from the family's perspective he was being an annoying little shit.
    • Buzz didn't just eat the last slice; he ate the entire damn pie then deliberately vomited it up. Buzz should have been punished for instigating.
      • Agreed. I wanted to slap Buzz after he had the cheek to pull the "you little shit, I'm so offended" act after he caused all the trouble. And is he ever called out for being a jerk? Nope. Also, why did Kate feel the need to let Kevin be humiliated in front of everyone? He deserved to be punished for acting out, yeah, but couldn't she have just taken him out of the kitchen, scolded him and sent him to bed?
    • We're supposed to sympathize with the protagonist of a story - making his family be assholes to him is a good way to do that.
    • Plus, if you rewatch the movie without child eyes, nearly every single character is morally reprehensible. The uncle in this scene, the mother is needlessly mean in punishing Kevin, Kevin in how annoying he was being, all of his peers for not being willing to help him, whomever ordered the pizza and just ordered black olives on every single one except one knowing that there was someone in the house who only ate cheese, Buzz for taking the pizza on purpose, Marv and Harry for obvious reasons, the pizza delivery man for hitting the statue, the police dispatcher for not wanting to take a call about an unsafe child, the police officer for visiting a house with a small child and when he doesn't answer the door says that the mother was just too dumb to know what kids she had, the woman in the store for being so snotty about his toothbrush question... it goes on. The only actually good character is Marley, and I think the Lincoln Park homeowners association would like a word with him.
      • Frank is actually Kate's brother-in-law (at the beginning, on the phone, she says something along the lines of '[Peter's] family are here and it's a mad house.').
      • The pizza delivery boy hitting the front statue is not a case of him being morally reprehensible. Who is morally reprehensible is whoever positioned it, because it's in such a position that practically every vehicle that tries to use the horseshoe driveway ends up hitting it when they park.
  • What's wrong with the Bird Lady in the second movie? I understand Kevin fearing Old Man Marley because Buzz scared him with a story, but why exactly does Kevin declare the Bird Lady "sick" upon first seeing her? She's not ugly or deformed, and she's (oddly enough for someone who spends all her time with pigeons) not covered in bird feces. What's his problem?
    • He's a kid, she's some lady who has a permanent "stern face," is covered in birds. I guess he forgot the lesson he learned in the previous film so that they could repeat the "scary stranger turns out to be a kind person, whom Kevin befriends" thing.
    • I don't think he "forgot" it so much as the people in question were on different levels of "weird". The only reason Kevin was scared of Marley at all was Buzz's story; aside from an occasional stare, there's nothing outwardly imposing about him, and anyone more mature or less impressionable would see him for what he is. The Pigeon Lady is a little different; she's a homeless woman in ratty clothes covered in birds. Average people probably would find her a little out there.
  • In Home Alone 1, the gangster packing the Thompson M 1928 A 1 in Angels with Filthy Souls lifted the weapon without cocking or taking the safety off. Wouldn't "You Fail Gun Safety Forever" be called in here? Surely he'd want to have to cock the thing for his own safety the rest of the time?
    • It's debatable whether that counts as a Gun Safety Failure or a Gun Knowledge Failure. The filmmakers may have simply forgotten that a gun must be cocked and the safety taken off before it will fire at all.
    • The Angels with Filthy Souls films have a degree of Stylistic Suck about them anyway; they are pretty clearly intentionally cheesy, so it's not impossible that this was deliberate to show that the In-Universe filmmakers were hacks.
  • I never got why Kevin was so shocked and horrified when he saw Harry for the second time, and recognized him as the cop from before. I know he's young, but did he think that cops always wore their uniforms and exclusively drove squad cars? For all Kevin could know, Harry might have just been off duty.
    • Off-duty police officers would likely still be driving their own squad cars, or personal vehicles, and are definitely unlikely to be seen driving around in a work van or dressed like a plumber. It's a fair point and Harry might have been innocent, but it was unlikely, and he wasn't. Plus, like so many headscratchers on this page, the answer is that Kevin is 8. It's understandable if he found it strange.
    • The "8 year olds are just like that" argument can't be stated enough. I remember being around that age and running into my teacher at the grocery store. It weirded me right out to see an adult outside the setting I normally associate them with. That's all it was. Kevin saw the "cop" dressed like a bum and driving a strange vehicle, and it weirded him out. Ironically if Harry and Marv hadn't started following him he probably would have gone home and put it out of his mind.
    • Besides, he had just stolen that toothbrush (albeit accidentally). He's just escaped from one cop and he runs into someone he recognizes as another. At this point, he's definitely feeling a little paranoid that the police are following him everywhere.
  • It seems odd that the Plaza would charge the family for room service after they gave them a suite for their screw up.
    • It's a big family; they probably would have had to fire someone if they didn't charge them for something.
    • I like to think that it was the concierge and his staff getting back at Kevin for putting them through hell during the chase scene. Send the whippersnapper's dad a $967 room service bill and let things sort themselves out.
  • I've always had trouble believing that there was nobody available to check on the kid. If I were in the Mc Allisters' situation I'd be calling anyone - acquaintances, coworkers, the cleaning lady - anyone. Hell, if you called me and told me your kid might be in danger I'd check up on him even if I didn't like you very much.
    • Indeed. If you are in France, you'd be justified in calling family/friends in the next state over from where you live to drive several hours there to check compared to flying several thousand miles home.
  • So let me get this straight. How the hell does Kevin clean up every single trap that he created for the house after battling the thugs? Surely, he just couldn't have left the house the way it was. Not to mention that he tarred the entire downstairs basement. It's lampshaded with Buzz's room, but Kevin pretty much destroyed the house when he stopped Harry and Marv. It's no wonder the entire family goes back to thinking he's a piece of shit again in the next film. (Which might add up to Fridge Brilliance)
    • Except for the tar on the basement steps, pretty much everything could have been easily cleaned up when you think about it: the feathers, the broken Christmas tree ornaments, the iron, the blowtorch, the toy cars, paint cans. But yes, he probably wouldn't have been able to clean up the tar. But I'm sure he'll probably explain what he had been doing by tarring the steps. Then there's the trashing of Buzz's room. Now the damage Kevin and the crooks did to his uncle's house in the second movie, on the other hand, will be something for that famil to take care of...
      • Don't forget in the first movie Kevin sprayed the steps with water that froze into ice.
      • Kevin had plenty of time to step outside and throw some salt over the steps. Hell, the snow shovel guy might have done it for him.
      • Notice how the steps are covered in deep snow when Kevin peeks outside the morning after the break-in, so clearly they're not slippery anymore.
      • According to the commentary on the Family Fun Edition DVD, director Chris Columbus said that in the original draft of the second script, the film was to open with Kevin cleaning up the house after the events of the first movie... so, it's not like they didn't completely think things through.
  • In the second film, how is Harry able to smash the car up that badly? He probably got thrown one or two stories up, and I can't count how many other—more realistic—films where a character falls from a much greater height on to a car and doesn't crush it nearly as much.
    • The films operate on a certain amount of cartoon physics. They're family movies, they're not there to show battered corpses and horrible wounds.
  • In Home Alone 2, how can Marv have multiple bricks hit in in the head and suffer nothing worse than an ugly mark on his forehead? Shouldn't his brains be splatted all over the pavement?
    • How is he later able to survive getting electrocuted without going into cardiac arrest? How is Harry able to survive falling on that car without shattering his spine or survive sticking his burning head in a toilet full of kerosene virtually unscathed? Because Harry and Marv are apparently invincible.
    • They're like Saiyans. Whatever doesn't kill them simply makes them.... stranger.
  • In Home Alone 3, the reason the boy is left behind every day is because he has chicken pox and therefore is not at school (the disease is contagious so that makes sense). We see he has some spots on his belly, but that's about it. Chickn pox usually has other symptoms than the rash just being there, like it being itchy, the child will usually have a fever, nausea, and bad headaches. While those last three are maybe okay to leave out, the itchiness of the disease is practically standard for all entertainment, but it never shows up. It's really hard, watching the movies to believe the kid is sick at all. I'm not asking for it to disable him or anything, but a reminder now and then that the reason he's home is that he's sick would be nice.
    • Plus his siblings around around him and then go to school. Even if they've had it before, the disease is highly contagious. I wonder how many people they infected?
      • Then they infected some children who will spend a few days at home. Chicken pox isn't the plague; the whole family doesn't have to go into quarantine.
    • He is itchy though. Mrs. Hess calls him out on "scratching in front of a lady", his parents tell him not to scratch, and his brother makes a joke about the resulting scars. They probably, off-screen, slathered him in calamine lotion and had him take oatmeal baths (which really cuts down on the itching).
  • Working in retail, you're taught something vitally important: It doesn't matter if the customer is stealing a freakin' PlayStation, you do not chase after him out of the store. You could get your ass killed that way. So doesn't the whole toothbrush chase scene seem like a severe case of Disproportionate Retribution, to say nothing of ignorance on the writers' part as to standard operating procedure in this case? And is Chicago so crime-free that chasing after a kid for stealing a 99-cent toothbrush really is the best use of a police officer's time?
    • I work at Walmart and until fairly recently, we (not me) did chase, tackle, and restrain shoplifters. Not for something so minor and not to such lengths, but it's totally possible they just got excited. Besides, that 8 year old has a knife or a gun or something and is going to turn on you?
    • Odds on it's to help set up Kevin's idea of being a criminal (the shopkeeper calls a police officer in to help catch him), thus eliminating the immediate necessity of calling the police when he finds out that his house is going to be burgled.
  • I know many people complain about the third movie, simply because it didn't have the original cast and actors and such, but let's try this on for size: in the commentary on the Family Fun Edition DVD of the first movie, director Chris Columbus talks about an idea John Hughes had for a third movie in which Harry and Marv turn over new leaves, move to the suburbs, start families for themselves, and so forth, meanwhile, Kevin apparently turned into a bad seed that he ends up in jail, and after he's released, hunts Harry and Marv down to exact revenge on them. So, would haters of #3 have preferred that scenario instead?
    • I certainly would.
      • Me too.
  • In the second movie, Kevin convinces the ticket clerk to let him on the plane before it leaves. When on the plane, the clerk asks if Kevin sees anyone he knows, and Kevin sees the back of the guy's head he was following and says, "There's my dad over there!" Instead of questioning it, the clerk goes along with it and tells him to find an empty seat. I don't care how big a hurry the plane was in to leave; there's always time to go over to the man and verify that he's Kevin's father (which he wasn't). Furthermore, are we to believe that Kevin wouldn't have shouted "Hey dad!" or something? I know this would've ended the movie really quickly, but this scenario wouldn't happen in real life.
    • The guy works in an airport. It's Christmas. While he might normally have the mental and moral fortitude to make absolutely sure, it's probably been battered out of him at that point. Kid says "That's my dad!", the guy goes "Okay, that's your dad, move on through, move on through."
The HoleHeadscratchers/FilmHoney, I Shrunk the Kids

random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
49928
3