Home Alone is a family comedy about a young boy named Kevin (Macaulay Culkin) who is accidentally left behind when his family takes off for a vacation in France over the holiday season. Once he realizes they've left him "home alone," he learns to fend for himself and, eventually has to protect his house against two bumbling burglars (Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern) who are planning to rob every house in Kevin's suburban Chicago neighborhood.
Hughes got the idea for Home Alone from his personal life, in this case while he was making preparations for a Christmas trip with his own family. “I was going away on vacation and making a list of everything I didn’t want to forget”, he told Time magazine. “I thought, ‘Well, I’d better not forget my kids’. Then I thought, ‘What if I left my 10-year-old son at home? What would he do?”.
The role of Uncle Frank was written for Kelsey Grammer.
Joe Pesci's character, Harry Lime, is named after Orson Welles's character from the film The Third Man.
Entered into The Guinness Book of World Records as the "Highest Box Office Gross - Comedy", accumulating $533,000,000 internationally.
The posters and DVD cases for the movie had Culkin with his hands on his face and screaming, based on the famous painting "The Scream" by Edvard Munch.
Joe Pesci kept forgetting that he was filming a "family" movie during his characters on-screen outbursts so director Chris Columbus advised him to say "fridge" instead of the "F-word".
The wax-and-plastic artificial snow used in this film was given to the Lyric Opera of Chicago when shooting finished. It has since been used in numerous opera productions.
In the scene where Harry attempts to bite off Kevin's finger, Joe Pesci actually bit Macaulay Culkin, leaving a scar on his finger.
Daniel Stern agreed to have the tarantula put on his face for exactly one take. He had to mime screaming because the noise would have scared the spider, and the scream was dubbed in later.
There is a legend that Elvis Presley (who died in 1977) makes a cameo in this movie. Many of those who believe that Elvis is still alive maintain that, the heavily bearded man standing in the background of the scene where Mrs. MacCallister is shouting at the desk clerk (just before she meets John Candy) is Elvis.
Kate McCallister: How could we do this? We forgot him.
Peter McCallister: We didn't forget him, we just miscounted.
Kate McCallister: What kind of a mother am I?
Frank McCallister: If it makes you feel any better, I forgot my reading glasses.
Kevin McCallister: This is extremely important. Will you please tell Santa that instead of presents this year, I just want my family back. No toys, nothing but Peter, Kate, Buzz, Megan, Linnie, and Jeff. And my aunt and my cousins. And in a few years time, my Uncle Frank. Okay?
Kevin McCallister: No offense, aren't you too old to be afraid?
Marley: You can be too old for a lot of things, but you're never too old to be afraid!
As Kevin flies through the air outside the front door after he sleds down the stairs, you can see the rollers on the bottom of the toboggan.
Obvious stunt double in the long shots of Kevin swinging across to the tree-house.
When the McCallisters are leaving in the morning and the neighbor boy is talking to the van driver, he is mouthing the driver's lines (the first time the driver speaks).
The stained glass window in the church is different in the interior and exterior shots. Seen from outside, it has four panels, while inside it has seven.
After Marv is hit with an iron, a wrinkle can be seen in the mark on his face revealing that the iron print is actually a plastic sticker. It can also be seen later when Kevin puts the tarantula on Marv's nose.
Near the end of the film, as Kevin looks out of the window to see his neighbor reunited with his son, a hand holding a camera is visible.
Ask any 8-year-old what a sugarplum is and you'll get a blank stare. Kids today have tougher questions to deal with. As a little girl asks in "Home Alone," "Does Santa Claus have to go through customs?" That's the holiday spirit behind this surprisingly charming film, which may be the first Christmas black comedy for children. Reviewed by: Caryn James of The New York Times.
Parents need to know there's a tremendous amount of slapstick violence in this movie, some of which results in very painful-looking injuries. The main character inflicts serious pain on two would-be burglars -- he trips them down a flight of stairs, burns them, hits them with heavy objects, places sharp objects on the ground for them to step on, and so on. Kevin is also shown watching a violent '30s gangster flick that his parents forbid him from seeing. Reviewed by: Common Sense Media.
Because all plausibility is gone, we sit back, detached, to watch stunt men and special effects guys take over a movie that promised to be the kind of story audiences could identify with. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert of The Chicago Sun-Times.