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Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992) Print E-mail
Tuesday, 20 October 2009
Image"Home Alone" gets a bad rap and many people simply cringe at its first sequel, "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York."  That said, both films have found a place in the cinema world.  Disregarding the floundering third and fourth sequels, this first sequel is not that bad.  In the end, yes, it uses the same pattern of the first film, but it sort of works for this type of film.

While the torture that this kid puts the villains through is simply horrific, there is also something funny about getting hit in the face four times with flying bricks or falling three stories through a whole in the floor.  It is sadistic to find humor in it, but alas I can't help but laugh when I see it, especially after such a long time since I first saw the film.

In this sequel, Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) returns and manages to get lost during the family's frantic trip to the airport for a Christmas vacation to Miami.  Kevin follows the wrong guy in a brown overcoat and is allowed to board a plane headed for New York.  Laying comedy upon coincidence, the Wet Bandits (Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern) escape from prison and head for New York as well.  Their plan is to rob a toy store on Christmas Eve.  Kevin is of course there to stop them.  Kevin leads the duo to his uncle's place, where he has set up another horror fun house.

All the same humor is present in this sequel, but it is still kept original enough to make you laugh.  Tim Curry and Rob Schneider do a wonderful job in the film.  Sequels tend to succeed when both the original director and writer return for the sequel.  The same cannot be said for the third and fourth sequels.

The video transfer is slightly better than that of its 2-year predecessor.  My biggest issue with the video quality is the inconsistent layer of film grain.  It ranges from barely noticeable to highly intrusive.  That being said, the source print is fairly clean, with hardly a blemish popping up.  Details are average, but textures fall short.  Colors are natural but still vibrant when it comes to the holiday shots.  Black levels are also average, with only minor crushing occurring a few times during the film.  Contrast wavers as well.  Overall, the contrast has been boosted beyond my tastes, creating a glossy or oily look for people's hair and skin.  For the age of the film, the video transfer is surprisingly good.  It is most definitely an upgrade form the DVD.
The audio quality is unfortunately, not nearly as good as the first film.  It is extremely noticeable how the audio team remixed this stereo track into 5.1.  The music is simply terrific, as it was with the first film.  John Williams' score is very spacious and pronounced throughout the film.  The dialogue is a bit of a weak link.  It fluctuates too much in dynamic range throughout the film.  The dialogue is also thin, lacking the low-mid support.  There is the occasional cracking in the dialogue as well.  Although, this seems to taper off after the first 30 minutes or so of the film.  LFE presence is only noticeable when the sound effects of the robbers getting clobbered are fed into the LFE channel.  Rear channel presence is hardly noticeable, except for the music spread.  Even during the climax of the film the sound effects rarely get good placement in the surround speakers.  This is a suitable audio track, but probably could have used a bit more tweaking.

The only bonus materials are three trailers for the first three Home Alone films.  Boo.

"Home Alone 2: Lost in New York" is not that bad people.  It certainly has some laughs.  If you are a fan of the film or simply need to check it out, then I recommend this Blu-ray as an upgrade from the standard DVD.  The video and audio quality are good, but certainly not great.

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