“Home Alone” came out 31 years ago, but it’s still a fan favorite around the holidays.
Like many John Hughes movies, it was filmed in the Chicagoland area.
The McCallisters left behind plants, a gingerbread house, dirty towels, and open garage doors.
Kevin’s sister insults him in French, even though the word is the same in English.
Before they head to France without him, Kevin’s siblings and cousins are constantly teasing and mocking him.
While he’s going around trying to figure out what to pack in his suitcase, one of his sisters tells him that he’s “what the French call les incompétents.”
Linnie was probably just brushing up on her basic French before their trip to Paris, but since “les incompétents” just translates to “the incompetent ones” it’s not as impressive as she makes it seem — even if it does confuse Kevin.
“Home Alone” is set near Chicago, like many other John Hughes movies.
Like writer John Hughes’ “The Breakfast Club,” “Sixteen Candles,” and “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” “Home Alone” is set in the Chicagoland area — which is clear from the mention of a Chicago airport and the Chicago Bulls decor in Buzz’s room.
Mr. McCallister throws out a passport and plane ticket when he cleans up the spilled milk.
The night before Kevin’s family leaves for their trip, everyone is busy finishing up packing, eating dinner, and finalizing their plans — which results in a lot of chaos.
After Kevin spills a bunch of milk, Mr. McCallister jumps to clean up the mess and wipe down the passports and plane tickets that were piled on the table.
As he throws away a bundle of napkins, he accidentally picks up and tosses one of the passports. A shot of the garbage can also shows that he threw away an American Airlines booklet that most likely contained a plane ticket.
If we assume it was Kevin’s passport and ticket, this clever detail helps to explain why no one realized he didn’t get on the plane.
The headcount Kevin’s sister takes seems accurate because she counted a neighbor in place of Kevin.
Before loading up into the vans to go to the airport, Kevin’s oldest cousin takes a quick headcount of her siblings and cousins.
In the rush of trying to get to the airport on time, she accidentally counts a neighbor boy — who is curiously climbing through the van — which brings her total to the correct number even though Kevin is still sleeping in the attic.
Kevin’s dad actually did forget to shut the garage.
After the McCallisters board their plane, Kevin’s mom is struck with the feeling that she forgot something.
After a moment of thought, Mr. McCallister tries to calm her nerves by saying he forgot to shut the garage door — which turns out to be true.
Despite having a number of plants in the house, Kevin’s parents didn’t arrange for anyone to water them.
There are plants throughout Kevin’s house, including in the dining room and kitchen.
But no one ever comes by the house to water them, which seems like something the family should’ve planned for before they left for the trip.
If they had hired a neighbor to look after their plants, they might have been able to help Kevin when he got left home alone.
When Kevin reads the Playboy magazine, the pages appear to be taped together.
While looking through his family’s belongings, Kevin finds a Playboy magazine in Buzz’s room.
He opens it to a page in the middle before throwing it on the floor behind him. But judging by the way it lands, it seems like the rest of the pages were stuck together.
According to Bustle, the prop was a real edition of Playboy from 1989, so the crew may have taped everything else so that Macaulay Culkin (who played Kevin) wouldn’t see any inappropriate content while they filmed the scene.
Kevin’s parents left a gingerbread house out on the counter.
In certain kitchen shots, there’s a decorated gingerbread house visible on the counter.
Like the plants, this seems like an odd thing to leave unattended while going on a long trip.
Kate, Kevin’s mom, also made a point of asking people to finish the milk the night before, so it wasn’t like she was oblivious to the perishable food in her house.
The movie Kevin watches, and replays several times, isn’t real.
Throughout “Home Alone,” Kevin watches a black-and-white film called “Angels With Filthy Souls” and later uses it as part of his defense plan against the Wet Bandits.
Although it looks pretty realistic and its lines have since become famous, the movie isn’t real. The scenes were made specifically for “Home Alone.”
The popcorn Kevin spills can be seen under the bed when he hides there later.
After realizing he’s home alone, Kevin runs around the house doing whatever he wants, including jumping up and down on his parents’ bed while eating popcorn.
Later, when he hides under their bed when a police officer knocks on the door, there’s popcorn on the floor from his earlier antics.
The mannequins Kevin uses to throw off the Wet Bandits were in the basement when he first went down there.
When Kevin first goes down into his basement, he walks past a couple of mannequins as well as other storage items.
These later prove useful when he rigs them up near the windows to trick the Wet Bandits into thinking there are adults in the house.
The Wet Bandits’ nickname works on several levels.
Marv and Harry, the robbers who try to break into Kevin’s house throughout the movie, go by the nickname the Wet Bandits.
Marv explains at one point that the name fits their signature move of flooding the houses that they steal from, but the nickname can also be a reference to the fact that they drive around in a plumbing van.
There’s an absurd number of towels in Kevin’s bathroom.
When Kevin showers and styles his hair in the bathroom, there are at least 20 visible light- and dark-green towels all around the room.
Seeing as there were just a bunch of people in the house, it makes sense that there are multiple used towels hanging to dry. But there are also a number of clean towels stacked on the shelves.
The McCallister’s house is fairly large, so this probably isn’t the only bathroom, making the sheer number of towels even more absurd.
The statue in front of the house is knocked over several times.
The airport-shuttle driver, police officer, and pizza deliverer all knock over the statue next to the McCallister’s driveway.
The pizza boy even drives into it a second time when he brings Kevin a pizza.
One of the robbers audibly curses in a scene.
“Home Alone” has a PG-rating, but one of the robbers can be heard cursing during a scene.
When Marv loses his shoe in the dog door, he says “s—” in a low voice — which can be confirmed in the movie’s subtitles.
The pizzeria’s name is probably a spin on a popular chain.
The pizzeria featured multiple times in the film is called Little Nero’s.
It isn’t a real restaurant, but it seems to be a spin on the popular pizza chain, Little Caesars.
Like Julius Caesar, Nero was a Roman political head, and both the fictional and real pizza chains feature Roman mascots.
There’s also a legend that Nero fiddled while Rome burned, making the pizzeria’s tagline — “No Fiddlin’ Around” — a clever joke.
Though he puts together an impressive battle plan, Kevin can’t spell “ornaments.”
The plans and traps that Kevin arranges to outsmart the robbers throughout the movie are pretty brilliant.
However, despite how clever he is, Kevin stills misspells “ornaments” on his battle plan — which is a helpful reminder that the character is, in fact, only 8.
The ornaments Kevin places under the window don’t match the rest of the decorations on the tree.
One of the many traps Kevin sets for the robbers includes placing ornaments under a window, so that Marv will step on them when he tries to break in.
The decorations on the tree seem to be shaped like candy canes, presents, and 2-D stars. However, the ornaments that Marv steps on are more colorful and shaped much differently.
According to Mental Floss, the ornaments on the floor were made of candy to help prevent any serious injuries, and actor Daniel Stern (who played Marv) wore rubber feet just in case.
Mr. Marley’s hand heals as he mends his relationship with his son.
Old Man Marley scares Kevin at the beginning of the film, especially when he walks up behind him at the drugstore and places a bloody, bandaged hand on the counter.
Throughout the movie, though, Kevin interacts with him and learns that the rumors about him aren’t true. He also finds out that Mr. Marley is estranged from his son and granddaughter — a plotline that director Chris Columbus added to the film.
When Kevin and Mr. Marley talk in the church, the heavy, white bandage on his hand has been replaced with a smaller, tan one. And at the end of the film, when he patches up his relationship with his son, his hand is completely healed.
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