The movie Home Alone is a Christmas staple on the television line up. My children absolutely love it. Having watched the movie with them last week, I am still charmed but more skeptical of the whole not-so-subtle logic behind it. Basically all of the McCallisters problems stem from the fact that they wanted to spend Christmas in Paris. If they had only stayed at home, then poor Kevin wouldn’t have been abandoned and the rest of the family wouldn’t have to fly transatlantic 2x in as many days.
Home Alone has had world-wide success and its inspiration has been sourced from around the world. Here are 5 surprising facts you may not have known about this movie.
1. The famous movie poster that shows the Kevin character screaming is actually based on Norwegian artist Edvard Munch’s The Scream.
2. The house actually exists in the Chicago suburbs. Located at 671 Lincoln Avenue in Winnetka Illinois, the house has become a tourist destination. The house is attractive and prosperous looking but it also helped to be located near the director’s hometown of River Forest, Illinois.
The entire film was shot in Chicago. Although the McCallisters were supposed to be in Paris Orly for the scene where they are trying to return to Chicago, the scene was actually filmed at Chicago O’Hare. That could explain why everyone managed to get back to Chicago so quickly!
3. Poland has Home Alone on its Christmas line up too. The movie is especially popular in Poland because it was one of the first Western movies shown in the country after the fall of Communism. Millions of people watch it every year.
4. French filmmaker Rene Manzor claims that Home Alone ripped off his 1990 movie 3615 Code Pere Noel about a kid who defends his home against a crazy Santa by turning his toys into weapons. For the record, there is no family-friendly version of events where Santa is a psychopath.
5. Although there were a host of spinoffs trying to capitalise on the movie, including four sequels, the original cast only returned for Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. The McCallister family really should really have learned their lesson by now – never leave home for Christmas even if it is just a domestic flight.
Even though we are in London this year, I have not bought into the stay home for Christmas ethos as a general rule. One of our favourite family Christmas memories involves the time we were in Naples Florida. We took some presents with us for the children, opened presents at breakfast on Christmas Day, and then spent the rest of the day relaxing by the pool. For us at least, Christmas occurs wherever we find ourselves in the world.
This post will be my last for 2014. I’ll be on a reduced blogging schedule for Christmas and the New Year. Enjoy your holidays!