A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Family is more important than possessions or places. Home is where the heart is. Home is just another word for family. One character complains her family makes her "anxious, furious, and insane," but she has to spend Christmas with them.
Positive Role Models
Pam and Jeff are loving parents and kind people who are pushed to the edge of reason by their financial circumstances. Max defends himself with violence, but really he's just a kid who misses his parents.
Characters are White, Asian, and Black. A boy teases a man about playing with dolls. The boy later tries on a dress. Parents speak to their young child occasionally in very basic Spanish because they're "teaching him Spanish." One family just moved to town from London. A family goes to the Catholic Church to celebrate Christmas. They're collecting gifts for needy kids at the church.
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Violence & Scariness
A kid sets up a "battle plan" to attack two adults who are trying to break into his home. They're after a doll, but he thinks they want to kidnap him and imagines the worst. His elaborate, painful traps involve heavy flying objects, fires, explosions, and pushpin-bearing darts. The two adults slip repeatedly on ice, sink into a covered pool, fall off a stone wall, walk on Lego bricks, run into things, are nearly impaled by falling objects, drive their car into a pole, and lose a tooth.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A joke involves a man at an open house who was caught looking through a woman's underwear drawer.
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"Bulls--t" is left unfinished. "Crap," "stupid," "butt," "cretin," "idiot," "flabby," "booby," "heinie," "monster." Bathroom humor.
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Products & Purchases
Lego, BMW, Roadrunner, IBM, Uber, Star Wars, Apple Watch, Toblerone, Fruit Loops, Harry Potter, Mentos. The film could inspire interest in other Home Alone movies.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adults toast with wine at a holiday meal.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that, like its predecessors in the franchise, Home Sweet Home Alone has a lot of comic violence. A couple (Ellie Kemper and Rob Delaney) are trying to retrieve a valuable doll they believe is inside the home of a young boy named Max (Archie Yates), who thinks the pair want to kidnap him because his vacationing family accidentally left him behind. To fend them off, Max sets up a series of traps that involve heavy flying objects, fires, explosions, and pushpin-bearing darts. The two adults slip repeatedly on ice, sink into a covered pool, fall off a stone wall, walk on Lego bricks, run into things, are nearly impaled by falling objects, drive their car into a pole, and lose a tooth. The beatings are played for laughs, but the motivation for the couple's desperation is financial hardship due to unemployment, and their economic problems are contrasted against other people's wealth in the film. Both they and Max ultimately learn that family is more important than possessions or places and that home is just another word for family. Secondary characters are Black and Asian. Language includes a use of "bulls--t" that's left unfinished, plus "crap," "stupid," "butt," "cretin," "idiot," "flabby," "booby," "heinie," "monster," and some bathroom humor. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
If you like seeing grown adults getting beaten, hit, pierced, set on fire, and tossed repeatedly on their backs, the Home Alone series is for you. By this point, after no fewer than five previous features in the franchise, Home Sweet Home Alone might not have much new to offer. But the characters here have a wholesomeness to them that was missing in some of the earlier films. Less home burglars and more desperate parents about to lose their own home, Ellie Kemper and Rob Delaney are quite sweet as reluctant home invaders Pam and Jeff, who play Christmas songs on bells for the elderly in their spare time and apologize to inanimate objects when they run into them.
After an awkwardly paced introduction with some clunky jokes, the film picks up when the comedy becomes physical. Kemper and Delaney are believable victims with limber frames. A scene where they struggle to help each other climb a tall wall, complete with an ill-timed fart and set in slow motion to children's choir singing, is laugh-out-loud funny. Same with the sequence of hijinks Max embarks upon when he finds himself alone at home, including ironing-boarding down the stairs and building an ice cream sundae directly in his mouth. Admittedly, there's (still) something iffy about laughing along with a 10-year-old as he brutally injures adults, and some of the falls and hits feel particularly vicious. But the familiar formula has its appeal, and franchise fans will enjoy the expected echoes of earlier editions.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.