How did a story about child neglect, bloody vigilante combat, breaking and entering, a scary old man, tarantulas, and face-searing electric-iron catapults (among other atrocities) become a heartwarming, seasonal family blockbuster? Simple: it sprung from director Chris Columbus (in his golden post-Adventures in Babysitting, pre-Bicentennial Man moment) and writer John Hughes (in his golden post-Ferris Beuller, pre-Beethoven, Beethoven’s 2nd, Beethoven’s 3rd, Beethoven’s 4th moment). Those who saw this film when it came out in 1990 — uh, this means you, for we all saw it — will remember that it’s actually funny, lively, and excellently cast (remember the part with John Candy? No? It’s great!) Scrappy little nudnik Kevin McAllister (Macaulay Culkin, in his golden post-Uncle Buck, pre-pubescent moment) raised the bar for precocious urchins everywhere, while seminal character actors Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern co-star as the Keystone Kops of ill-advised burglary. Also, there’s some stuff about Christmas.
Dir. Chris Columbus, 1990, 35mm, 103 min.

Watch Cinefamily’s original trailer for “Home Alone”!