Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Episode #211: Home Alone – Comfort Rewatch


The holiday season is upon us and we are watching one of the best Christmas movies, Home Alone, directed by Chris Columbus and starring Macaulay Culkin.

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Show Notes:

Decor inspiration (really break this down) Anything you would use in your own home? Loved, hated, strong reactions etc. …

McCallister House – Love all the green and red throughout the house, feels real and lived in because of the parts that are unfinished like the basement and attic.

Grocery Store – Coziest and prettiest little grocery store.

Other cozy inspiration (fashion, food, drink or anything?)-

Comfy sweaters

Nativity scene is cute

Sweet moments in the van where they are talking about how hard it is to be a parent

Theme of strangers helping out

Rate the movie from 0-5 booby traps:

Elsie – 6

Emma – 6

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Episode 211 Transcript:

Elsie: You’re listening to the A Beautiful Mess podcast, your cozy comfort listen. The holiday season is upon us, and this week we’re watching one of the best Christmas movies of all time, Home Alone. It’s directed by Chris Columbus and starring Macaulay Culkin. Finally. Finally! 

Emma: I know. I really, too, was like, have we already done this? Or have we just talked about this house one million times? 

Elsie: Yeah. We’ve just talked about it a million times. I think maybe in the old days we might have done an episode about Christmas movie houses. I’m sure that we at least talked about them, but I don’t keep a tab open for old podcast episodes. So I’m not sure. 

Emma: I don’t either. It’s like, it’s kind of in my brain, but it’s kind of not. I’m also like, I could have dreamed that. I don’t know. There’s also an episode of the movie that made us about Home Alone, and I loved watching it. It was so interesting to see how they built the sets, and it was in this abandoned school gym or something. It was really, really interesting. So I also, if you like Home Alone, highly recommend that as well. 

Elsie: Yeah. It’s for sure worth watching. The elf one was also so good. 

Emma: Yeah, I watched a pretty woman one and it was really interesting. Like, it’s a really cool concept, a really cool show, so, yeah.

Elsie: All right. I have an update. It’s so random, but it brings me so much joy. So if you guys remember, if you all remember in the olden days when we were house shopping, Oh, that was only last year and for the past five years straight. But yeah, anytime I was house shopping, especially in Nashville, I was always talking about how there were like all the gold records in the basements and it’s not always in the basement, but they’re usually in a basement.

Emma: Like in a studio, like a home studio.

Elsie: Yeah. And it’s just like very, very common in Nashville to see gold records because I mean, this is probably obvious. But like for Garth Brooks, it’s like Garth Brooks isn’t the only one that gets the record. It’s also like every single person who contributed and worked on the record.

Emma: Yeah, his banjo player. His, I don’t even know. You know, everyone who worked on it. 

Elsie: Keep saying instruments that you think you know. 

Emma: The mandolin player. The percussion person. Yeah. Do I know a lot about music? Definitely. 

Elsie: Anyway. So I always just thought it was so cool. I would like to take pictures of them. I would study them and try to, you know, it was never like one of my favorite records. I always wished it would be, you know, like one of my, you know, you know how it is. Apparently, country music is as vast as the ocean and no human has ever swum across it. So it’s very vast. 

Emma: What a metaphor. 

Elsie: So anyway, my update is that my ship came in, in my life because…… 

Emma: I like that this is about you.

Elsie: It’s about me. Okay. I guess it’s about Jeremy, but it’s also about me because it’s my basement. So. In their basement, we’re recording in my basement right now. And as soon as we came down today, I was like, Emma, look and Emma, tell them what is sitting on the fireplace right in front of us. What is this freaking thing? 

Emma: It’s not a gold record. It’s a platinum record. 

Elsie: It’s a platinum record. So you’re probably thinking your husband’s not famous for music. How did you get a platinum record? Well, let me tell you. So yeah, my husband, he’s had some records before, but you know, never anything like this, but this record is from one of our close friends, his name is Ryan O’Neal, so his band is called Sleeping At Last, and he wrote this song called Turning Page for a Twilight movie, but it kind of has a life of its own. So it was like the wedding song in Twilight if you remember that. And Jeremy actually recorded, I think the cello for it at that time. So that is how Jeremy got his own platinum record. 

Emma: And, it looks so cool. It’s like in its own frame. It has a little plaque on it that says presented to Jeremy Lars. It’s really cool. 

Elsie: You should have seen me when I opened it. Cause I thought it was like something that I bought, you know, cause it was just like a package that came to the house and I started opening it up and I was like screaming because I did know it was coming and I do have a weird thing with Twilight and I just like, I’m so happy. 

Emma: That is one of the best songs from it. 

Elsie: It’s one of the greatest songs of all time. Wouldn’t you say? 

Emma: It’s a beautiful song.

Elsie: It’s incredible. 

Emma: Yeah. Regardless of Twilight, which I do love, it also is truly just a beautiful song. So yeah, it doesn’t surprise me that it’s platinum, but yeah, it looks so cool. And yeah, it’s down in her basement, which is Jeremy’s studio. But we were discussing it before we started recording. I was like, I think you should put it up in the entryway. I think you need to put it up in your living room right by the TV. I’m like, why would it be down here? You kind of put it, it’s so cool. It’s like getting a trophy in the Olympics or something.

Elsie: It’s the greatest thing that’s ever happened. 

Emma: Or like when people have like an Emmy in their house, I’m like, you’ve got to put this like front and center.

Elsie: Yeah. Well, I think the studio is the appropriate place for it, but it’s very meaningful and yeah, very special for Jeremy and he was, you know, proud to be a part of it and all of that. So. Anyway, that is our happy news, and I definitely made it about myself. And you know, like, I don’t know, maybe we should watch Twilight. Maybe we should all just join together now and do a Twilight rewatch, in honor of this platinum record. 

Emma: I would rewatch it. I would reread it. I love it. Also, Ryan’s awesome. He was on an episode. 

Elsie: You want to re-read it? Really? 

Emma: Yeah, it’s fun. Cool. It wouldn’t take long. It’s kind of for kids.

Elsie: And the really long vampire perspective. 

Emma: You’ve read romance before, you can kind of skip ahead. 

Elsie: Okay. So anyway, we’ll move on. This week is the Comfort Rewatch about Home Alone. It’s absolutely one of the greatest movies also Christmas movies of all time. I think it’s one of the coziest like to just put it on is a mood Enhancer for me. And it honestly gets better and better over the years. So describe the movie for those who haven’t watched it. I feel like this is kind of silly because there’s probably no one who hasn’t seen this, but I’ll just read it real fast. An eight-year-old troublemaker mistakenly left at home must defend his home against a pair of burglars on Christmas Eve, incredible. 

Emma: It’s honestly a great premise. It’s just so 90s. 

Elsie: It’s incredible. So we watched this movie as children, and this is probably one of the rare comfort movies that I remember being a child and watching it. I remember we watched it at our home, not at a theater. So it was probably like maybe the next year or maybe it was that year. I don’t know. It was definitely in the. 90s, and at the time, it was new and you know, it’s a movie that just inspires kids to start building traps. The map and just like all the different parts of it. I remember at a young age, the part that made the biggest impression on me was definitely that I wanted to build traps. And now as an adult, the thing that makes the biggest impression is that I want the house and I kind of want to emulate and I think I kind of have certain things about this house, like exactly. It’s a really, really cozy holiday house. And there’s some things about it that are like, just like this understated vibe. Anyway, what was your first impression? Do you remember? 

Emma: You know, too, like, looking back, it’s funny because this would have been my introduction to Joe Pesci as an actor. And then as you get older, you know, as I’ve grown up, I’ve seen a lot of his movies where he is not being a, basically, Disney villain, he’s in an adult movie, and doing more. The characters that he’s probably more known for, although I think he is pretty well known for Home Alone because it’s a very famous movie. But it’s just funny because it’s such a different, it’s fun to see actors do something so different from what they normally do, but it’s still them doing their thing if that makes any sense. I just love all his fake cursing in this movie, frickin, frickin, frickin, you know, it’s like so funny. It’s just like a really good performance, both the act, all the actors in this movie, but especially the villains in this movie. Chef’s kiss. Yeah. Love it. Amazing performances. 

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Elsie: I agree. I think they’re incredible. My favorite actor from the movie, well, I mean, I kind of want to say Macaulay Culkin, but my favorite actor from the movie also is Katherine O’Hara. I’m such a big fan and I love that she’s in like Kind of every Tim Burton movie from the 90s, which I really liked those movies as well. Yeah, she’s definitely an actor that can bring a performance and, you know, more recently Schitt’s Creek was so iconic and I loved every moment of it. 

Emma: Yeah. And she’s usually, well she’s been in so many things, but a lot of times I think of her as a comedic actress. But in this, she’s a very, like, mother who’s frantically trying to get home to her kid. It’s actually a really sweet performance. 

Elsie: It’s true. I think her performance isn’t as funny as. It comes off as funny to me because you remember, like, the main moment when she’s like, Kevin! I 

Emma: Yeah, well, I think she does a great job playing up the funny parts. But when you think about the movie, It’s actually like really scary to think about leaving a kid home alone and needing to get from a different country back, you know, and I think she plays it real, but like with all of her skills as a community actress and just a great actress.

Elsie: I find her a very relatable mom because of the way she’s acting at the beginning of the movie when she spent and the way she’s acting at the end of the movie when she’s so happy to be home or like, I feel like those are both me and, I relate to every single part of it.

Emma: Yeah, there’s a lot of great performances. 

Elsie: Okay, yeah, this is an iconic movie. The other thing that’s so special is, that this started like last year, but our daughter this year is 8 years old, Nova, and she says this year is her Kevin McAllister Christmas because he’s eight years old in the movie. That’s true. And she’s like been looking forward to it. It’s so sweet. That’s really cute. And I do think that eight years old is, like, I know so many people think the best ages for kids is like two, three, four, five. Like, I swear to God, eight. Like, I mean, is there, like, anything better than, like, an eight-year-old on Christmas?

Emma: Yeah, eight through ten being kind of magic, 

Elsie: It feels like it’s just a different, maybe, like, part of, you know, the younger years are more, like, for you, and this is, like, more for them, because I feel like she’s having her, like, big core memories right now. So she loves this movie and it makes me love it even more. They definitely like to fast-forward and rewind to get to the pranks over and over.

Emma: It’s the homemade zip line to go to his little clubhouse. It’s such a dangerous movie. 

Elsie: It’s human nature. Yeah. It does teach you so many bad things. And I will say that, for the parents who think Home Alone is not appropriate for children, I get it a little bit. I just watched it this morning. I get it a little bit. There are some things in it that people wouldn’t put in a kid’s movie now, and I don’t think that at the time that they made it, they knew, they did not know how famous it was going to be. Let’s just say it wasn’t overthought, and I think that’s also a part of its charm. I think like your kids, Like hearing a little bit of a curse or hearing a parent be mean or hearing like just I don’t know I think that it’s normal like I condone it because I think that like that’s life and it’s just like one more way to learn about life, you know, you can talk about it later if you feel like you need to.

Emma: Yeah Every parent knows their kid and you can figure out what’s gonna work for you because you know some kids are really sensitive to certain things and some kids not so much. You kind of have to find your way with that. I’m not worried about it. Parents know their kids, they’ll figure it out. This movie’s awesome though. 

Elsie: Old movies have more things in them. There’s always something surprising in an old movie, I will say, especially kids’ movies. You’re like, whoa. 

Emma: I feel like in some ways it’s like, kind of a good thing in that it makes me feel like we’re always moving forward and learning more about like human psychology and things that we should maybe update. I think it’s a good thing, but it means if you’re going to watch a movie from the 80s or 90s or earlier, there might be something that we have updated since then.

Elsie: There might be like a little conversation in there and my kids watch a lot of old movies and they read a lot of old books and it’s pretty often that they say words that we don’t say anymore, or they’re not allowed to say, like, for example, stupid. It’s like, that’s considered a really bad word to us, but it’s like, in older books. It’s kind of like, Junie B. Jones, and Ramona and stuff, they’re in there all the time. Anyway, let’s move on to the movie. So we’re going to talk about decor inspiration that we loved, strong reactions, et cetera. I have so many reactions to this home. You guys already know this is one of my number one. So, this home is a real home in the Chicago suburbs, the exterior part of it at least, that you can, you know, like, walk by and take a picture.

Emma: We have had podcast listeners walk by as they’re listening to our podcast before and like send us a photo of themselves and that, I’m talking about it, is a moment. And I felt like, wow everybody gets it. They understand us. There’s nothing that fits more to me than a listener who’s like, I walked by the Home Alone house while listening to your podcast. I’m like, oh, you understand everything that we’re trying to do with this. 

Elsie: I agree. If I had to micro niche, it would be like movie houses. That is like my number one interest, but no one is ever gonna make you a micro niche and no one can make us. So anyway, this house is a 10 out of 10. Let’s start with the entryways You walk in and I like I think I kind of subliminally decorated my entryway to watch this movie because I didn’t remember the wallpaper that we entryway kind looks like the wallpaper that they have. Yeah, not exactly but It does a little bit and it made me so happy. So the whole house is so much green and red. And the thing I love about it is that if you aren’t analyzing it, you barely register it at all. It just looks like a really cute house at Christmas time. And if you like to become like us and you’re like looking at every single detail, it’s like the phone is green and the bed is red and in every single interior shot, you can find red and green over and over. So it’s really fun. It’s like a treat for the eyes and it’s kind of one of those things where like the more you start paying attention, the more you see in the movie. There’s like a green and red carpet. 

Emma: Yeah. And I think too, like, you know, green and red, they’re complimentary colors? Not what it’s called on the color wheel, but they’re very bold. Like they’re a very bold choice, but the house doesn’t feel like overly Christmas until you start analyzing it. Like if you’re just watching the movie, you’re like, Oh, it’s decorated for Christmas. It’s Christmas time. I know this is a Christmas movie, but you’re not really thinking like, Oh, all of the wallpaper is like little green 90s leaves and you know, like just like little details that yeah until you start micro. 

Elsie: They did a great job. It’s very very literal, but I think maybe because the house doesn’t have so much like Christmas decorations It’s more just like the colors of the furnishings and the wallpaper and like the decor is red and green It doesn’t like to strike you as like overly Christmasy at first. But then, yeah, the more you pay attention, you’ll see it. It’s insane. And there are some shots like there’s a green hallway. There are some shots that are very, very themed out. 

Emma: Yeah. And it does feel like a fancy family house. Like, it feels kind of lived in. One, especially in the opening scenes, there are a million people in the house because it’s like a big family. 

Elsie: It looks fancy, but it also looks a little messy and it definitely looks, like, there are rooms where I’m like, I would totally, like their bedroom, I would totally take this exact room except for like, just change the art. Like, there’s just things about it. Yeah, like extreme nineties things. 

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Emma: But then they also just because of all the you know, Kevin having to protect his house, they show us some areas of the house that are like, not decorated, like the basement. We have to see this very unfinished, just like paint cans basement. And then also his kid, like tree house looks like a kid’s tree house. It doesn’t look like decorated in there, and that’s kind of fun to see. So I feel like they do a really good job of making it feel like this family is nice and well-to-do. Obviously, it’s a very big house, but then it also like, feels real because it feels like people actually live there and there are areas that are not as decorated or that are just like kids. I think even the attic, they show us, Kevin, up in the attic because he sleeps up there and that’s how he gets left. And it’s not really finished all the way, and I think moments like that are like great set decorating because it’s like they didn’t go overboard. They didn’t polish it too much. So it feels a little more like, Oh yeah, it’s a house. I have areas of my house that are done, you know. 

Elsie: Yeah. I totally agree. Okay. So, a couple of our favorite parts of the home. I do love the attic. The attic sparks joy. It’s cute. I always love an attic in any movie and like, it’s like kind of a movie thing. Yeah. Kids hiding in attics. To put a bedroom, a bed up there, like, I don’t know very many people in real life who have a bed in their attic.

Emma: I don’t either. That they use. You did it, but you, like, finished out the attic. It’s, like, very fleshed out. Yeah, but we added HVAC. So that’s a big difference. Yeah. That, too. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I, like, love, I love the parent’s bedroom. I love Buzz’s bedroom. I love the hallways, the stairways, you know, all of that.

Elsie: I like the kitchen, in some ways, it’s got, like, a black tile countertop with white grout. It’s, like, the most horrifying possible countertop, and I still love the kitchen. 

Emma: I also love the Christmas lights, they show us all the Christmas lights on the outside of the house. And it’s a little bit of a plot device because they have the villains are dressed as police officers. And they’re like, you can tell that the families are out of town because all the Christmas lights are on a timer. And he’s like pointing out when they’re going to go on. 

Elsie: I don’t like to know how that we’ll talk about the villains more, but like, I don’t know how that’s relevant at all, because aren’t all houses on a timer?

Emma: That’s what I was gonna say. 

Elsie: You remember to turn them on every night? 

Emma: Yeah, I’m at my house all the time and my lights are on a timer. Cause I don’t remember. So yeah, I agree.

Elsie: The part that I loved about the villains is when they are talking about what they’re going to steal, and it’s like VCRs. It’s like the most horrible things that just didn’t age as valuable at all. And then when they’re walking around the house, just like putting what looks like just like random knickknacks into like a bag, they’re so bad at their job and they don’t know what’s good. They don’t know what’s valuable at all.

Emma: They’re very Disney villains. And I also like that they give them this dynamic through, you know, the script and like, they’re a little bickering where they almost vibe like siblings, like brothers who are like, you know, like have their different ideas on how things should go, and they’re a little bit of a power struggle of who’s going to get it. Cause one of them’s always like, I want to be called the wet bandits. We got to leave the water running in each of the houses to leave our mark. The other one’s like, don’t do that. Then they’ll know which houses we hit, you know like it’s this kind of like little bickering basically that we do. I’m like if we were robbing houses, this is the kind of fights we would have.

Elsie: I agree. We would probably have some strategic fights and disagreements. 

Emma: We would, yeah. So like, they really vibe like siblings. They’re not in the movie, but it’s just like this fun little dynamic. 

Elsie: It’s cute. Yeah, I don’t know nothing puts me in the mood to eat cheese pizza though, like watching Home Alone.

Emma: That really stuck out to me as a kid, because I was definitely a kid who enjoyed food. But yeah, he eats like a whole cheese pizza to myself. That’s just like a kid’s fantasy that comes to life in the movie. He also has the moment where he makes the microwave macaroni and cheese, like right before he has to go defend his house and he has candles lit. I love macaroni and cheese. And so I don’t know, like that little scene, I’m like. Oh yeah, he’s just like having a little moment of kid self-care before he has to go defend his territory. You know, like it’s just this funny little sweet moment. 

Elsie: Yes. He does a lot of self-care. I will say he does his grocery shopping.

Emma: Ice cream, making his big sundae.

Elsie: Yeah. He’s doing a good job. It’s adorable. Okay, I noticed that in the living room, they have the same piano as us. Our new piano that Jeremy just got is the same. It’s like a wood, traditional-looking grand piano. It’s very magical. I kind of just want to copy the home, like I wish that in another life, I could be one of those people who just makes an Airbnb that’s Home Alone.

Emma: Oh yeah, that would be fun. Maybe you could do it in this life. We’ll see. Another cozy inspiration for the movie is there’s a lot of great sweaters in this movie. 

Elsie: There are. 

Emma: Some of them are very, like, 90s, but just very, yeah, a lot of great sweaters, great turtlenecks. I really do like the fashion in this movie. I feel like the 90s kind of came back in many ways. It’s now like the vintage that’s cool, you know? And so, yeah, this movie has a lot of interesting fashion choices that are good. 

Elsie: I think that in home decor and in fashion a lot of it is, like, it’s completely back. There are very few things in the movie that would be considered, like, so outdated now. You know? I think most of it is, like, pretty cool. Okay, so I love the grocery store scene. I just think it’s like the coziest, prettiest little grocery store, and it makes me so happy when he’s talking about the coupons and stuff. 

Emma: Yeah, the coupons, oh my gosh, yeah. 

Elsie: And I do love the church scene when he’s like hiding in the nativity. The nativity is so cute. I can’t think of any other interiors from the movie that like really stood out to me. The van, the van is so cute. 

Emma: The van, yeah, there’s, I don’t know what there is to say about the decor of it. There’s so much going on in the van as she tries to frantically make her way home to her son who’s been left she’s traveling with these like polka players and they’re just driving in a van, doing a van tour and yeah, it’s a really fun scene and I think that’s like some of the sweet moments too. Basically talking about how it’s hard to be a parent and you’re going to get something wrong but you just kind of have to do your best, you know. And it’s a touching moment, but it has this backdrop of silliness cause it’s a bunch of like polka players and they’re in a van, and yeah. I think too, and I don’t know how to feel about this, but I like it as a storytelling device. They do this thing multiple times because the polka players are like this, it’s like strangers who help out. Because I think sometimes we are kind of inclined to think like strangers are dangerous or strangers might get us. And like the old man at the church or the old man who seems spooky is always like shoveling his driveway and there’s all these rumors about him. The kids in the neighborhood have rumors and then he turns out to be a really good guy and really hopeful. He’s. Looking out for Kevin. And kind of the same thing with the polka players, it’s like there are these random strangers she doesn’t know and then they give her a ride. They’re like, oh, you need a ride? We’ll give you a ride. And I like that as a device, strangers who help out. I also think it’s a really hopeful theme and really sweet to see and it makes so much sense for a Christmas movie. 

Elsie: Yeah. I completely agree. Beautiful.

Emma: There are kind people in the world. It might be that weird old man on your street. Who knows? I don’t know. 

Elsie: No, for sure. That’s really sweet. I mean, I think that like, anything that they have in the movie is considered cool and like, it would be very fun to have a Home Alone-themed party. 

Emma: I love when people do Home Alone-themed Halloween costumes. A lot of times people will do it with little kids and they’ll be the villains and, you know, like, I don’t know, there’s just a lot of different versions of it. But I just love it when people do like, Home Alone-themed Halloween costumes. I think it’s a blast. It’s so fun. Yeah. And I like that, you know a movie’s iconic when it is starting to be like a major Halloween costume. Like, that’s when your movie’s like made it into the zeitgeist, it cannot be removed because it’s like everyone’s dressing like it for Halloween because you know it’s like that recognizable. You’re like, I just have this like, you know, half cut off like stocking cap and my head looks charred and everyone knows who you are, you know, because it’s like famous. It’s amazing. 

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Elsie: Okay, so I put down maybe it should be one of the life goals that we can fly first class and we can sit all of our kids in the back of the plane.

Emma: That sounds nice. Is that even allowed? That sounds pretty nice. 

Elsie: I don’t know if it’s allowed. It doesn’t sound right to me, but that’s why it like stands out so much. I’m like, really? Really? Do people do that? Are you allowed to do that? Yeah. I think it’s hilarious. It’s so funny. 

Emma: It would be expensive to fly with that many kids.

Elsie: Oh my gosh. It sure would. 

Emma: You know all the memes that are like, what does Kevin’s dad do for a living? Everyone wants to know. 

Elsie: Yeah. No kidding. That’s funny. 

Emma: Okay. Should we do some trivia? 

Elsie: Yes. Let’s do it. 

Emma: Alright movie trivia time. Joe Pesci deliberately avoided Macaulay Culkin on set because he wanted Culkin to think he was mean.

Elsie: Oh, that’s so sweet. 

Emma: I know it’s kind of cute. 

Elsie: That’s so cute. Some scenes were shot in a three-story single-family home located in the suburbs of Chicago. The kitchen in this movie was shot in the house. Oh, interesting. Along with the main staircase and the basement. Ooh, that’s a lot. Most of the first-floor landing the house’s dining room and all of the downstairs rooms, excluding the kitchens were built on a soundstage. The house was built in 1921 and features five bedrooms and a fully converted attic. A detached double garage and a greenhouse. Kevin’s quote-unquote treehouse in the backyard was built specifically for the movie and then demolished after principal photography ended. What a shame. What a shame. Oh my gosh.

Emma: My house would have been like, just leave the treehouse. No, just leave it. We’ll take it. 

Elsie: Oh, it’s so magical. I mean I can’t imagine how it is to live in a famous movie house, but if anyone knows someone who lives in a famous movie house, please have them write to us and tell us what it’s like and if it’s annoying. I’m so curious about that. 

Emma: Yeah, I would be curious too. It would be a fun device in a book. Be like, I live in this house, but like a fictional, you know something. 

Elsie: It’s a good idea.

Emma: Yeah. I’m always trying to think of weird premises now. It’s all I do. Hobby. Okay. Next trivia. The home where the movie was filmed is actually just outside of Chicago, as we said, and therefore the filmmakers used the house’s real address when Kevin and Harry referenced the location. However, the house has since been blurred out on Google Maps Street View, along with several other houses in the neighborhood, including the quote-unquote Murphy House across the street, because local residents have had to deal with thousands of people driving by or walking by and taking pictures. The crowds are reportedly much worse around the holiday season. Well, that kind of answered our question. 

Elsie: Yeah. I mean, I can imagine that, but I also think it’s special. I think it’s a part of history. It’s a landmark. I know it’s someone’s personal home, too, but I don’t think it’s bad if people take pictures from the road. There are hundreds of famous movie houses from various movies, and, you know, like, I just think it’s a delightful thing. 

Emma: Oh, yeah. I could see it either way, but I could also see it, you know the world is big and there are weirdos in it, so I do understand wanting some privacy and making sure, like, if you have children, like, make sure the kids are safe. I can understand that as well.

Elsie: I heard one time that, like, you know how there’s like a house in Breaking Bad where they threw a pizza on the roof? I heard that people in real life, wouldn’t stop throwing pizzas on the roof. And that would be so horrible. But that’s destructive and that’s gross. 

Emma: It’s kind of vandalism. 

Elsie: It’s a little bit different from taking a picture. 

Emma: It’s funny vandalism, but it’s not cool, man. Don’t do that. 

Elsie: Yeah. It’s horrible. 

Emma: No, taking a picture from far away and also making sure that the family wasn’t in it, who lives there. Because like, you want to take a picture of someone else’s child or something. That’s not cool. But, you know assuming that, to me, I get it, but I also could understand wanting to feel safe in your home. I think everyone deserves to feel safe in their home, so, there are a lot of different levels of that. So yeah, I can understand that. 

Elsie: John Candy filmed his part in only one day, albeit it was a 23-hour day. Okay, that’s way too long to work. Wow, that’s way too long. Almost all of his dialogue was improvised, love that. His part was potentially partly inspired by the character he plays in Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, which was also written and produced by John Hughes. 

Emma: Oh, cool. That’s interesting. I love that. The scene when Kevin walks past the driveway just as Harry and Marv are driving down it and stop just in time to avoid hitting him was achieved by having Macaulay Culkin walk backward as the van was driven in reverse away from him and had some stagehands shake the van for dramatic effect. The film was then shown backward. Interesting. That’s a funny way to do a special effect. Does sound much safer for a child. 

Elsie: It’s good to know that they didn’t almost hit him with a van. 

Emma: I kind of figured they had a stump person who was a similar height or something. 

Elsie: Yeah. I had no idea how they got that shot. It’s really close up. It’s like, that’s truly his face.

Emma: Yeah, there would be. 

Elsie: That’s a good idea. I love learning little things, it’s so magical. When Kevin is jumping up and down on his parent’s bed while munching on some popcorn, there are actually several crew members lying on the floor on both sides and at the foot of the bed. They had been instructed to lie there and be ready to catch McCaulay Culkin in case he accidentally jumped or fell off the bed. That’s like kind of sweet. 

Emma: Yeah, I will say I don’t know how easy it would be to catch a kid who falls if you’re lying on the floor though. That would be difficult. 

Elsie: I agree. You’re not maybe gonna catch them for sure. But that’s sweet that they were taking care of him. I am curious. Yeah, like, what all parts of the movie he had, like, what were the most challenging things he had to do, because it is kind of hard to tell, and I don’t usually analyze it in that way when I’m watching it.

Emma: It’s kind of a physical movie, too, because there’s a lot, you know, going on, so, you know. 

Elsie: Rate the movie from zero to five booby traps. We would never give a zero to a movie we have on the podcast. 

Emma: Five or six booby traps, for sure. 

Elsie: Yeah, let’s do a six. Hard six.

Emma: Six paint cans. Six blowtorches. Yeah. It’s a great movie.

Elsie: It’s so wonderful. It’s one of my absolute favorites of all time, so I’m glad we got to do this. Okay, let’s go to Nova’s segment. Alright, we are in Nova’s cozy bed with a quilt on and we are recording, what are we recording Nova? 

Nova: A Home Alone meditation. 

Elsie: Perfect. Okay, Nova, I’m closing my eyes.

Nova: Well, while Home Alone’s getting ready, he takes a nice bath. Ah! He screams. Then, he goes to the grocery store. He gets some groceries. The lady at the counter asks, Are you here by yourself? Kevin says, What? No way, my mom’s in the car. She looks at one of the groceries that he picked out for the kids, he said. When he was walking home, Boom! He dropped his groceries in the snow. He quickly picked them up and went right back home. And then he went wild. Scooting down on the sleigh on the stairs. and jumping on the bed with a guitar. He was having a good time. Meanwhile, his mom was worrying about him. She was trying to go home, while he was just having a great time. When he was done being all wild, he watched some TV. Then, he had a great idea. When the pizza man came to deliver his pizza, he turned on the TV, It scared the pizza man. He put the pizza on the front porch. And left very quickly in Home Alone he said my cheese pizza just for me. He prayed, then ate happily in the house.

Elsie: All right. We hope you enjoyed this episode. We love doing these comfort rewatch, so continue to send us your suggestions. Next week we’ll be back with our book report on Feel Something, Make Something by Caitlyn Metz.



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