Roger Ebert’s Surprising Take: Declares ‘Home Alone 3’ the Best in the Franchise

When the name “Home Alone” is mentioned, the iconic image of Macaulay Culkin’s Kevin McCallister navigating his way through pranks and mischief immediately comes to mind. Despite the enduring popularity of the character, the franchise expanded with four additional movies, each attempting to capture the essence of the original. However, it was the unexpected opinion of renowned film critic Roger Ebert that elevated the third installment, ‘Home Alone 3,’ to a surprising status.

Ebert’s Contrarian View

Roger Ebert, one of the most notable critics of the modern era, famously expressed his disdain for the mere idea of a third Home Alone movie in his review for ‘Lost in New York.’ He boldly stated, “Call me hard-hearted, call me cynical, but please don’t call me if they make Home Alone 3.” However, to the astonishment of many, Ebert later found himself eating his words after watching and reviewing ‘Home Alone 3.’

An Unlikely Favorite

In direct contradiction to the widely accepted consensus, Ebert declared ‘Home Alone 3’ as the best in the franchise. He went so far as to recommend it, albeit with a caveat: “not to grownups unless they are having a very silly day.” This surprising reversal came from a critic who had initially scoffed at the prospect of a third installment.

Ebert’s Praise for ‘Home Alone 3’

Ebert acknowledged that ‘Home Alone 3’ followed the same formula as its predecessors but highlighted several aspects that won him over. He appreciated the reduced levels of cynicism and violence, emphasizing the film’s splendid wish fulfillment and escapism. The performance of the new star, Alex D. Linz, received praise, although Ebert stopped short of deeming him superior to Culkin’s Kevin.

The humor in the traps was noted as being funnier and less painful for the characters, and Ebert commended the third act for focusing more on slapstick than special effects. In his assessment, ‘Home Alone 3’ emerged as “more entertaining than the first two films,” or, as Ebert humorously put it, perhaps he was just “having a very silly day.”

Siskel’s Dissenting View

While Ebert found unexpected joy in ‘Home Alone 3,’ his long-time colleague Gene Siskel didn’t share the sentiment. Siskel likened the movie to the theme of “Dumbbells Keep Falling on My Head” and expressed sympathy for families who might be “suckered into seeing Home Alone 3.” The dynamic between the two critics, known for their on-air arguments, found another point of contention in the surprising reception of the third installment.

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Conclusion: A Cinematic Surprise

Roger Ebert’s reversal on ‘Home Alone 3’ stands as a testament to the unpredictable nature of film critique. What was initially dismissed as an unwarranted sequel turned into an unlikely favorite for a seasoned critic. ‘Home Alone 3’ may not have won universal acclaim, but Ebert’s surprising take adds a unique chapter to the legacy of the beloved franchise.

Q1: Why did Roger Ebert initially express disdain for ‘Home Alone 3’?

A1: In his review for ‘Lost in New York,’ Ebert expressed disdain for the idea of a third Home Alone movie, stating, “Call me hard-hearted, call me cynical, but please don’t call me if they make Home Alone 3.”

Q2: What led to Roger Ebert changing his opinion on ‘Home Alone 3’?

A2: Despite his initial skepticism, Ebert later watched and reviewed ‘Home Alone 3,’ finding it surprisingly enjoyable and declaring it the best in the franchise.

Q3: What did Roger Ebert appreciate about ‘Home Alone 3’?

A3: Ebert praised the reduced levels of cynicism and violence, highlighting the film’s splendid wish fulfillment and escapism. He also commended the humor in the traps and the focus on slapstick in the third act.

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