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Home Alone 3 (stylized as HOME ALONe3) is a 1997 American family comedy film written and produced by John Hughes. It is the third film in the Home Alone series and the first not to feature actor Macaulay Culkin and the cast from the previous films (1990, 1992), director Chris Columbus, and composer John Williams. The film is directed by Raja Gosnell (in his directorial debut), who served as the editor of both original films and stars Alex D. Linz as Alex Pruitt, an 8-year-old resourceful boy who is left home alone and has to defend his home from a band of criminals. The film was followed by a made-for-television sequel, Home Alone 4: Taking Back the House, in 2002.

Plot

Peter Beaupre (Olek Krupa), Alice Ribbons (Rya Kihlstedt), Burton Jernigan (Lenny Von Dohlen), and Earl Unger (David Thornton) are four internationally wanted hitmen working for a North Korean terrorist organization. Having stolen a US$10 million missile-cloaking computer chip, the thieves put it inside a remote control car to sneak it past security at San Francisco International Airport. However, a luggage mix-up occurs, causing a woman named Mrs. Hess (Marian Seldes) to inadvertently take the thieves' bag containing the remote control car, while returning home to Chicago. The four thieves arrive in Chicago and systematically search every house in Hess's suburban neighborhood to find the chip.

Meanwhile, Alex Pruitt (Alex D. Linz) is given the remote control car by Hess for shoveling snow, but she lectures him for scratching numerous itches. He returns home and removes his shirt to discover that he has chickenpox, and therefore must stay out of school. While recovering at home, Alex uses his telescope and discovers the thieves on look out for the chip. Wondering what the thieves want with a remote control car, Alex opens it and discovers the stolen chip. He informs the local Air Force Recruitment Center about the chip while asking if they can forward the information about the chip to the right authorities.

The thieves conclude that Alex has been watching them and decide to pursue him. As a snowstorm hits Chicago, the thieves block off the road to the house and Alice duct tapes Hess to a chair in her garage and leaves the door open. By this point, Alex has rigged his house with booby traps and prepares to set them off with his pet rat, Doris, and the loud-mouthed pet parrot (voice of Darren T. Knauss) of his brother (Seth Smith). After their numerous break-in attempts are foiled by Alex's traps, the thieves infiltrate the house and search for Alex. Alex flees to the attic and takes the dumbwaiterdown to the basement, then runs outside and calls to Alice, Jernigan and Unger. The thieves see Alex and notice a trampoline below them. Jernigan and Unger jump to pursue Alex, but the trampoline gives way and they fall into a frozen pool. Alice wriggles her way into the dumbwaiter chute, but falls down to the basement because Alex removed the bottom.

Alex rescues Hess and is cornered by Beaupre, but scares him off with a bubble gun resembling a Glock. Meanwhile, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrives to Alex's siblings' school, after being tipped off by the recruitment center. Alex's family brings the agents to their house, where the police arrive and arrest Alice, Jernigan, and Unger. However, Beaupre flees to the snow fort in the backyard. The parrot drives the remote control car into the snow fort and threatens to light fireworks, which are lined around the inside. Beaupre offers a cracker, but the parrot demands two. Since he only has one, the parrot then lights the fireworks, and flees. Beaupre is discovered and arrested.

Later, Alex and his family celebrate with his father (Kevin Kilner) returning home from a business trip. Hess, who befriends Alex after he successfully rescues her, is there, along with the FBI and the police, while Alex's house is being repaired. Then the thieves are shown having their mugshot photos taken and they appear to have caught Alex's chickenpox.

Cast

  • Alex D. Linz as Alex Pruitt, an eight-year-old boy with a high IQ living in suburban Chicago.
  • Olek Krupa as Peter Beaupre, leader of the crooks.
  • Rya Kihlstedt as Alice Ribbons, sole female of the four crooks.
  • Lenny Von Dohlen as Burton Jernigan, one of the four crooks.
  • David Thornton as Earl Unger, one of the four crooks.
  • Haviland Morris as Karen Pruitt, Alex's mother.
  • Kevin Kilner as Jack Pruitt, Alex's father.
  • Marian Seldes as Mrs. Hess, Alex's elderly neighbor.
  • Scarlett Johansson as Molly Pruitt, Alex's older sister.
  • Seth Smith as Stan Pruitt, Alex's older brother.
  • Christopher Curry as FBI Agent Stuckey
  • Baxter Harris as a Police Chief
  • Neil Flynn as a Police Officer
  • Nick Jantz as a Police Officer
  • Darren T. Knauss as the Parrot (voice)

Production

Home Alone 3 was pitched at the same time as Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, and it was planned to produce both movies simultaneously; however, those plans fell through.

The idea for a third Home Alone movie was revived in the mid-1990s; early drafts called for Macaulay Culkin to return as a teenage Kevin McCallister, along with Daniel Stern and Joe Pesci reprising their roles as the two burglars. By 1994, however, Culkin had dropped out of acting. As a result, the idea was reworked as an entirely new film centering on a new cast of characters. It was filmed in Chicago and Evanston, Illinois, with the airport scenes in the beginning of the film being shot in two different concourses at O'Hare International Airport.

Soundtrack

Track listing
No. Title Artist(s) Length
1. "My Town" Cartoon Boyfriend 3:18
2. "All I Wanted Was a Skateboard" Super Deluxe 2:34
3. "I Want It All" Dance Hall Crashers 3:19
4. "Almost Grown" Chuck Berry 2:20
5. "School Day (Ring! Ring! Goes the Bell)" Chuck Berry 2:42
6. "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown" (version not in the film) Jim Croce 3:01
7. "Green-Eyed Lady" (version not in the film) Sugarloaf 3:40
8. "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" Dean Martin 1:57
9. "Home Again" Oingo Boingo 5:26
10. "Nite Prowler" The Deuce Coupes 1:46
11. "Tall Cool One" The Wailers 2:35
12. "Home Alone 3 Suite" Nick Glennie-Smith 8:01

Reception

The film grossed $79,082,515 worldwide.[1]

Home Alone 3 holds an approval rating of 30% at Rotten Tomatoes based on 23 reviews, with an average rating of 4.4/10[2] Audiences polled by CinemaScoregave the film an average grade of "B+" on an A+ to F scale.[3]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film a positive review of 3 out of 4 stars and said that he found it to be "fresh, very funny, and better than the first two".[4]

The film was nominated for a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Remake or Sequel, where it lost to Speed 2: Cruise Control.[5]

Novelization

A novelization based on the screenplay was written by Todd Strasser and published by Scholastic in 1997 to coincide with the film. ISBN 0-590-95712-0

The novelization starts with the four crooks, Peter Beaupre, Earl Unger, Burton Jernigan and Alice Ribbons waiting outside the taxi depot.

Home media

Home Alone 3 was released on VHS and Laserdisc on June 2, 1998, and on DVD on October 5, 1999, which was later reissued in December 2007 (and again in 2006 and 2008 as part of Home Alone multi-packs). While the DVD presents the film in its original Widescreen format (1.85:1), it is presented in a non-anamorphic 4:3 matte.

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