Home Alone: The Holiday Heist

Home Alone: The Holiday Heist

aka Home Alone 5

2012
Written by Aaron Ginsburg and Wade McIntyre
Directed by Peter Hewitt

Home Alone Holiday Heist
No. NO! NOOOOOOoooOOOoooOOOOOO!!!!!!!

Home Alone: The Holiday Heist is the fifth Home Alone movie. This will come to a shock to some of you, who will be spitting out your coffee or vodka or coffee with vodka while declaring “There was a Home Alone 4?!?” or even “There was a Home Alone 3!?!?!” I am here to tell you that, yes, yes there was. Home Alone 3 was a sequel in name only that featured a brand new kid named Alex Pruitt who battled a group of thieves after a microchip in a car he got. Home Alone 4 is a made-for-tv flick that was originally a pilot for a potential Home Alone tv series, it did feature Kevin McCallister and his family (though several of his siblings were missing) and his dad dumped his mom for some hot young tail. Most notably, French Stewart stars as the thief Marv, who returns with a new gang to harass Kevin while trying to kidnap a prince.

Home Alone Holiday Heist
You’re so square baby I don’t care

Now that that is out of the way, it’s time to get to Home Alone 5! We return to the classic formula of a kid being left home alone. If you ignore that his teenage sister is also at home with him. Art thieves break in and young Finn Baxter (that’s his real name!) sets traps to stop them as he sees life as a video game. Just when you think this made-for-tv film might have something cool to say about modern children growing up in electronic culture, it doesn’t bother. In fact, it doesn’t bother to do much of anything except role through the numbers, which is disappointing, but not unexpected. What was unexpected is some of the traps are actually funny, they just needed a whole lot more of them. Those few moments of brightness are not enough to make Home Alone: The Holiday Heist the holiday classic of the new millennium. But I hope they make Home Alone 6, and set it at the North Pole where a kid defends Santa’s house from terrorists. Because that’s just crazy enough to work.

Home Alone Holiday Heist
I don’t know what to say that won’t make this picture any worse than it looks…

Finn Baxter (Christian Martyn) – Finn Baxter sounds like one of those made up names for kids from British stories no one ever has. But this kid has that name and he does what kids do, spending all his time on video games and freaking out about ghosts. Which is sort of a shame as he’s a regular Rube Goldberg. Eventually he sets up ridiculous traps to defend his house and sister.
Alexis Baxter (Jodelle Ferland) – Bratty teenage daughter of the Baxter clan who cares about nothing except texting texting texting. Except maybe freaking out Finn as he’s easily scared. Jodelle Ferland might be familiar to Twilight fans, and does a convincing job as an annoyed teenager.
Catherine and Curtis Baxter (Ellie Harvie and Doug Murray) – Could there be any less effective parents in the world than these two? At least mom has a career that is important, dad just bumbles around and neither do any sort of disciplining at all besides complaining. Mom does go into Mom Terror mode when she’s trying to get back home to her kids, but that’s about the parents do besides leave.
Sinclair (Malcolm McDowell) – Art thief who has spent decades tracking down the lost Edvard Munch work The Widow, because his great-grandmother is painted in the portrait. Hey, giving the bad guys back stories that make them not so bad isn’t that smart of an idea. Also note that McDowell can kill Captain Kirk but can’t handle a little kid.
Mr. Hughs (Eddie Steeples) – A black guy in a Home Alone movie! Who is a thief…. Huh. Okay. Hughs is the safecracker who also eats when he’s nervous.
Jessica (Debi Mazar) – The third thief, Jessica is obsessed over the prior safecracker Steve, who she got romantically involved with that ended badly. I was hoping she was romantically involved with Marv or something, but no such luck…
Mason (Peter DaCunha) – Neighbor kid who can tell you all sorts of things about snow and how snow is awesome and snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow snow.
Simon Hassler (Bill Turnbull) – Finn’s gaming buddy who no one knew was a college kid who played games all day until they voice chatted right before the house was attacked.
Home Alone Holiday Heist
I don’t give a crap what “Rosebud” is and it’s certainly not in this basement!

Home Alone Holiday Heist

The family we follow are the Baxters, who are moving from California to Maine as the franchise ditches the Chicago locale for good. The kids Finn and Alexis are not too keen to be moving across the country in the middle of the school year. In fact, they’re not too keen to be doing much of anything besides being plugged into their electronic devices – Finn with his video games and Alexis constantly texting away on her phone. Jodelle Ferland plays the bratty Alexis perfectly, while the parents just fumble and hem and haw, never bothering to discipline her in the slightest. Finn gets a slight bit of pushback when he acts whiny, from what looks like an anti-video game stance more than an actual attempt at parenting.

Finn is even forced to GO OUTSIDE! And TALK TO A NEIGHBOR KID! The horror, the horror. Finn is presented as someone who doesn’t like social situations at all, which is totally at odds with how he acts, which is very outgoing. The neighbor kid Mason (who I hope is named after Mason Gamble, who played Dennis the Menace and did the Home Alone parody in Spy Hard) is obsessed with snow and is always 100% cheerful and pro-snow.

Home Alone Holiday Heist
I shall sacrifice you to my snow gods!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
The seal is broken and the demons escaped. Christmas is ruined!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
I see Reddit’s Men’s Rights forum is making films…

The house they bought is a huge mansion that used to be owned by the famous bootlegger Dead Leg, who died as he lived, as a leg, and his ghost supposedly haunts the halls of the house. Alexis has fun with this, spooking the already fragile Finn. He resorts to ghost traps (that ensnare his father) and setting detection traps that do detect something else…

Namely that the house is also targeted by thieves led by Sinclair, who are looking for a valuable painting that was made of Sinclair’s great-grandmother. Their initial casing sets off Finn’s detection trap, and they plan to return to do a thorough search. At the time the whole family is supposed to be at a Christmas party at mom’s boss’s house. But Alexis and Finn are being brats again and mom loses it and says they should just stay home alone. HOME ALONE.

They make vague references to the original film, then Finn manages to lock his sister in the secret room in the basement where the painting is hidden, and can only afford a ball of string to try to get her out with. While out getting the supplies, he overhears the thieves talking and realizes they are coming to break into the house in a little bit.

Home Alone Holiday Heist
Starting a thread on GuruGossip because that bitch is going down!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Ed Asner kidnaps random people for Christmas parties every year. They are never seen again. But late at night, on Christmas Eve, you can hear their screams in the wind…
Home Alone Holiday Heist
How Frosted Flakes are really made!

Thus it’s time for a setting up traps montage! Which despite missing the rollout of the crayon-drawn blueprints, the montage is done pretty well with multiple Finns doing the different steps of traps. If you are wondering why he doesn’t just call the cops, the batteries on their cell phone is dead and they just don’t bother to think of asking the neighbor kid (who has been outside the entire time building snow forts and snow balls in the dark!)

When the thieves arrive, Sinclair immediately starts ragging on the others because they don’t want to walk on the icy walkway, in essence bagging on the thieves in the prior films as they slipped on the ice (this even pays off when the cops arrive!) Of course, the ice is obvious so the thieves will use the booby-trapped other entrances. Some of the traps are even funny. The transformation of some of the thieves into Christmas icons is another thing they should have done more with. The mentioning of the whole scenario as a tower defense game and the trapping of Alexis in the secret room where the treasure is worked well together, as she became one of those video game princesses you save all the time. It also helped give an extra sense of danger that Finn was protecting more than just a house. Even though the danger quotient was mostly nulled by the thieves being campy and the overall lack of danger from Home Alone villains.

Home Alone Holiday Heist
The happiest family…in the house…if you don’t count the mice…
Home Alone Holiday Heist
50 Shades of Grey will do that to you…
Home Alone Holiday Heist
That’s not how you drink your milk-plus. Guess he’ll be on the wrong end of the old ultra-violence, eh?

In conclusion, Home Alone: The Holiday Heist is typical made for TV fare. While it had the potential to be greater, it bungled that much as the burglars bungle their holiday heist. And who else was hoping that computer nerd friend of Finn’s would have been Kevin McCallister? Remember the Christmas is saved when you buy lots of extra electronic gadgets, which somehow makes you want to be more social.

Home Alone Holiday Heist
Ha ha ha! Police brutality is hilarious!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
I don’t even know anymore…
Home Alone Holiday Heist
The painting was a Munch painting entirely to do this joke. This joke right here. This one.

Rated 5/10 (sick cookies, robot time, real estate agent, moving truck, outlines outlines outlines)


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Home Alone Holiday Heist
OMG didja see Bellas getting married st8 outta high skl???
Home Alone Holiday Heist
And then the house ate them!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
This painting looks like it was painted underwater…
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Home Alone 5 took a dark turn when it became an X-Files spinoff…
Home Alone Holiday Heist
We’ve cloned the kid for twice the home aloneness!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Only known photograph of the Three Stooges as children
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Tower Defense this, suckers!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Paranormal Slacktivity
Home Alone Holiday Heist
My goodness…no insulation at all!!!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
I told you we should have worked for Praetor Shinzon, not Soran!
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Someone filled the sink with Instant Santa Mix!

And here is some closeups of the film’s wrapping paper as I know the guy who made it. Yes, I have those awesome connections you only dream about!:
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Home Alone Holiday Heist
Home Alone Holiday Heist

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Written by Tars Tarkas

Tars Tarkas

Runs this joint!