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Recap / The Nostalgia Critic S 10 E 36

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Release date: December 19, 2017

Film: Home Alone 2: Lost in New York

Tagline: People seem to Love It or Hate It. Is the sequel to one of the biggest Christmas hits ever a good follow up, or should it have been left alone?

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  • Actor Allusion: Four cases:
    • Aunt Despair claims she is only watching this movie because it has John Heard (Peter), whom she recognizes as the drunkard from Sharknado.
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    • When Kevin explains to Mrs. Stone (the clerk of Plaza Hotel) that he sometimes gets into mischief, that scene was followed by that of an adult Kevin screaming in the :DRYVRS web video series, specifically Episode 1, a Darker and Edgier pseudo-sequel to and Deconstruction of the Home Alone series, starring Macaulay Culkin in a reprise of his breakout role.
    • When Hector runs off Kevin's room after getting "yelled at" by "Peter" in the shower (actually an inflatable clown controlled by Kevin, with a recording of Uncle Frank telling him off for actually recording him singing in the shower earlier in the film), the Critic notes the irony of his actor Tim Curry being scared off by a clown, followed by a clip of the iconic "Wa-ha!" laugh of Curry's breakout role as the first Pennywise.
    • When Harry and Marv break into Duncan's Toy Chest and Marv greets "Happy Hanukkah" to himself, the Critic dubs in lines about how he doesn't need to star in A Christmas Story 2 (Marv's actor Daniel Stern plays Ralphie's dad).
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  • Actually Pretty Funny: Even the Critic thinks Rob Schneider's role as Cedric the bellhop is far more palatable than most films he starred in. He also finds the scene in which Kevin uses Angels With Even Filthier Souls to trick the staff into thinking the concierge was smooching with guys hilarious.
  • Added Alliterative Appeal: The Critic finds the fact that the first trap is "a blatant, blunt, brutal brick" funny is how "it's almost a troll joke".
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • The Critic claims he doesn't blame Macaulay Culkin (Kevin) for his robotic acting, given his performance as a mature kid in the first film turned him into one of the biggest stars of The '90s... before he proceeds to find ways to mock his acting.
    • Seeing Donald Trump's cameo as the owner of Plaza Hotel (which he did in real life at the time), the two families decide to discuss politics, only for the Critic to distract them from doing so (given the incredibly sensitive topic of his presidency at the time this episode came out) by pointing to another celebrity — this time, that of Tim Curry as Mr. Hector, the concierge of Plaza Hotel.
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    • A Running Gag is that the Critic keeps trying to delay Aunt Despair having a conversation about Chester and Doe about homeless people... only to be surprised that Chester and Doe are the ones saying homeless people are just bums that need to get a job while Aunt Despair believes they need all the support and care they need.
  • Berserk Button / Overly Long Gag: The Critic is so offended by his family's not liking Christmas Crunch that he reams them out over it, in a rant that lasts 26 hours, apparently.
  • The Bully: The Critic is genuinely pleased that, despite still being a prick towards Kevin, Buzz is far more fleshed-out (albeit his language was toned down) than the previous film, let alone other movie bullies.
  • Call-Back: Kid Tamara, now under the care of Chester and Doe, recalls how Aunt Despair abandoned her at the end of the Balto review.
  • The Cameo: Awesome Comics' Heather Reusz reprises her role as Doe (Chester A. Bum's wife).
  • Contrived Coincidence: The Critic sarcastically suggests that New York City is very small, judging from the three times Kevin and the burglar duo unwittingly met each other, as well as the duo with a woman who suspects them of making unwanted advances.
  • Dinner and a Show: The Framing Device of the review is a Christmas dinner hosted by the Critic, with Uncle Lies, Aunt Despair, Kid Malcolm, Chester A. Bum, Doe, and Kid Tamara as guests.
  • Dodgy Toupee: Uncle Lies has a really bad wig over his head, a Call-Back to the Monkeybone review.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Tim Curry's cameo as Mr. Hector is one of the Critic's favorite parts in the movie, and in his opinion he's more than awesome enough to offset the other cameo of Rob Schneider as Cedric the bellhop.
  • Glurge: Critic coins the term "tear jerks" to describe movies that try to be Tearjerkers, but are instead forced.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: The Critic feels a bit uncomfortable with shots of the twin towers of the former World Trade Center, at the time still standing.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: The Critic explains that much of the hate towards this film has to do with how it rehashed elements from the previous film.
  • Nightmare Retardant:
    • The Critic doesn't understand why the homeless Pigeon Lady is supposed to be scary.invoked
    • The Critic says that the part where Marv gets electrocuted into a skeleton is "lame".
  • Parody Commercial: The scene where Kate had a feeling Kevin may not be in the same plane as theirs, followed with Peter downplaying her fears, is played up as an American Airlines commercial.
    Malcolm!Announcer: "American Airlines. Losing your luggage AND your kids."
  • Reality Subtext: Seeing the lavish Christmas decorations on the Duncan's Toy Chest store (which Kevin visits and which Harry and Marv were about to break in), the Critic snarks that the store ought to enjoy the opulence while it still can, because it only has a few years left. In Real Life, FAO Schwarz, a centuries-old toy shop and setting of said scene, filed for bankruptcy in 2001 and has since been acquired by various competitors ever since, as well as suffering from the 2009 financial crisis.
  • Ripped from the Headlines: Seeing a woman slap Harry and Marv for apparently touching her butt (actually done by Kevin, then in their custody, as a distraction so he can escape), the Critic sarcastically suggests this is the reason she is Time Magazine's woman of the year. In Real Life, Time's "Person of the Year" for 2017 are female celebrities who spoke of personal experiences of sexual misconduct and helped launch the "#MeToo movement in light of allegations leveled against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein (see Take That! below).
  • Running Gag: For every word hammed up by Tim Curry's weird pronunciation as Mr. Hector, the "Your Word Has Been CURRIED" counter ticks, indicated by Pennywise's iconic "Wa-ha!" laugh.
  • Shout-Out:
    • When Kevin punches his brother Buzz for pulling a prank on him during a choral performance, which led to a chain reaction of hijinks, a clip of Urkel's "Did I do that?" scene plays.
    • The Critic compares an old lady surrounded by pigeons to a hybrid between Scottish singer Susan Boyle (of Britain's Got Talent fame) and Mrs. Doubtfire.
    • Kevin's one-liner stating his intent to stop the burglary on Duncan's Toy Store (which was also raising donations for a children's hospital) is followed by the Critic wearing sunglasses and standing up, while an edited version of the Big "YES!" from The Who's "Won't Get Fooled Again" plays.
  • So Okay, It's Average: The Critic's final verdict on the film. As much as it recycles a lot of plot elements in the first film, certain scenes are nevertheless unintentionally funny and weirdly effective.
  • Star-Making Role: The Critic explains how the first Home Alone film was the breakout film of Macaulay Culkin.
  • Take That!:
    • When Uncle Frank calls Kevin a pervert for recording him singing in the shower, the Critic notes that ironically Culkin may perhaps be the only actor yet to be accused of sexual misconduct, while showing pictures of other famous men facing the same raps, such as Harvey Weinstein (co-founder of Miramax), Kevin Spacey, Matt Lauer (former NBC newscaster), Al Franken (federal Democratic senator from Minnesota), Charlie Rose (former PBS host) and Dustin Hoffman.
    • When the newly-escaped Marv makes an unintentional fish pun when Harvey asks him if he smells freedom, the Critic snarks that Matthew Broderick will master that craft in six years' time, while showing a still of his infamous "That's a lot of fish" scene.
    • During a transition, the dissolve from the Grinch to Mr. Hector smiling has the Critic claiming that Tim Curry would be a far better live-action Grinch than Jim Carrey was.
  • Tear Jerker: Discussed by the Critic concerning the scene of Kevin and Kate thinking of each other while "Christmas Star" plays in the background, noting how forced this was compared to the same scene in the first movie.
  • Visual Pun: When Kevin denies being a solitary kid seeking a hotel reservation, the Critic claims it's meant to hammer in how much this film repeats plot elements from the previous one, while literally brandishing a hammer and hitting the screen.

"Have a lovely day."
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