The McCallisters... Woof!

33 Years Later, Home Alone Feels Like A Study In Toxic Family Dynamics

Buzz still sucks — and he isn’t the only one.

Catherine O'Hara and Macauley Culkin star in the classic '90s Christmas movie 'Home Alone.'
20th Century Fox

Home Alone is one of those treasured holiday films I remember fondly from childhood. But like other things in life, like how good sleeping feels and why granite countertops really do make a difference, you start to notice things that you didn't before when you rewatch it as an adult. What amazes me 33 years later about Home Alone is not the fact that Kevin's dad can afford a house that size (really, what does he do for a living?) but how awful the McCallisters are. They are literally the worst family in the world.

Is Kevin a little bit of a brat? Sure, but he's 8 years old and lives in a family of a-holes. It's not surprising. Plus, the kid needs to be a little scrappy just to garner some decent respect — and at least one slice of his favorite cheese pizza.

After hitting play on the movie three decades after its original theatrical release, here's why I'm glad Kevin wished his family away. In fact, I wish they had all just disappeared... for good.


Look, I'm an only child, but it doesn't take a genius to know that Buzz is not only the worst brother in the world but also a certified jackass. Right from the start, Buzz treats Kevin like garbage. He offers his little brother no empathy and kindness, refusing to let him sleep in his bedroom to avoid sleeping with leaky bladder Fuller, then eating his cheese pizza and pretending to barf it all up in front of him. What a tool.

When the family discovers Kevin is home alone, Buzz feels no remorse and thinks his 8-year-old brother needs to grow up anyway. No good can come from Buzz, who will probably grow up to be some sort of psychopath.

Kevin's Other Siblings

Honestly, there are too many of them to count or remember their first names. All I know is they hate Kevin. One brother refuses to help Kevin pack his suitcase, even though Kevin doesn't know how to pack a suitcase (he's 8, remember). His other sister proudly calls him "les incompetents" — meaning he's an incompetent loser. Nice.

Why on earth would Kevin want to be around these people? And who raised these kids anyway? Oh, right. Jerks.

Uncle Frank

I'm not sure how Uncle Frank isn't in jail by now. Mooching from his brother? Stealing crystal salt and pepper shakers from airplanes? Serving the shrimp despite his Parisian host's pleas that they were for "later"? Calling his 8-year-old nephew a "little jerk" because he spilled some Pepsi?! Talk about toxic masculinity and being an overall terrible human being. How is this guy even a father? Someone call child's services, stat.

Kevin's Father

Well, I know where Buzz gets his tool-ness from. Kevin's father doesn't even seem to give two hoots that his youngest child is home alone, thousands of miles away. He's like *shrug* and "Let's go back to my brother's fancy Parisian apartment and call the Parisian police and see what happens." Well, that's stupid. They can't speak English, you can't speak French, and why would they know anything about your kid's whereabouts in ILLINOIS? Then he basically throws in the towel because he can't get on a flight and leaves his wife at the airport to deal with it?!

When he finally sees Kevin at home, shockingly alive and well given what he's been through, he barely gives him a hug and is all, "Kevin, my boy" and pats him on the head, like, "Oh, these things happen, you know!" Typical. I guess we know from the deep pockets he supposedly has that Kevin's father is more about making money than having a healthy relationship with his kids.

Kevin's Mother

I know we're supposed to think Kevin's mother is the heart and soul of this family (and I love Catherine O'Hara), but let's be real — she's not a great mom. There's not one ounce of understanding for her 8-year-old son when he doesn't get to have his cheese pizza and then goes to bed hungry. Then she has to tell him that he's the "only one in this house to make trouble." Uh, lady, have you talked to your son Buzz lately? And when Kevin wishes for his family to disappear, she doesn't even flinch. She even eggs him on because it might come true. Wait, what? Talk about some serious childhood trauma you're inflicting upon your young son.

She shows some emotion when she finally sees her son after leaving him stranded in their house for a few days, which is really the least she can do for him at this point. Those therapy bills will surely take a toll on Kevin later in life, and I wouldn't blame him if he doesn't want to see his family ever again.

The real verdict, all these years later? Kevin should've been adopted by Old Man Marley. He's the only person in the entire movie who gave a crap about him. In my mind, Kevin moves in, helps him shovel snow, and grows up to marry his granddaughter. Now, that would be a happy ending that Kevin deserves.