Hard Ticket to Ho-Ho-Home Video: Home Alone 2 Vs. Die Hard 2


It’s a battle of two Christmas-set sequels that tried to shamelessly cash in on their infinitely superior originals by recycling their plots in a different setting!:


Home Alone 2: Lost in New York trailer

Die Hard 2: Die Harder trailer


Home Alone 2: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern, Catherine O’Hara, Tim Curry, Rob Schneider, Brenda Fricker, Rip Taylor, Jaye P. Morgan, Jimmy Walker, Ally Sheedy

Die Hard 2: Bruce Willis, Bonnie Bedelia, William Atherton, William Sadler, John Amos, Dennis Franz, Franco Nero, Fred Thompson, Robert Patrick, John Leguizamo, Art Evans

There’s a lot to love about the Die Hard 2 cast, including Williams Atherton and Sadler, John Ambrose and the general who I had no idea was Franco Nero until just now. However, Tim Curry and Rip Taylor. You simply cannot compete with that.

Point: Home Alone 2



Home Alone 2: Chris Columbus (Adventures in Babysitting; Home Alone; Mrs. Doubtfire) decided that he would indeed like to own a fleet of jetbikes made out of solid gold, so he accepted the paycheck for this movie. Columbus has a whimsical style that’s perfectly suited for this type of material, even though it’s a bit darker in tone and color than the first film.

Die Hard 2: Renny Harlin (Cliffhanger; Cutthroat Island; Deep Blue Sea) is basically Brett Ratner’s long-haired uncle. He’s a semi-competent director of action films. He’s like ordering a Quarter-Pounder from McDonald’s: Eh, he’s alright. Serves a purpose. Could have been much better. Take this snowmobile chase, for instance. It captures half the excitement of riding on an actual snowmobile.

Point: Home Alone 2



Home Alone 2: The ’80s were over, and John Hughes was in full money-banking mode (other movies he wrote in the early ’90s include Dutch, Curly Sue, Beethoven, Dennis the Menace, and Baby’s Day Out). Home Alone 2 is basically a carbon copy of the first one, as nobody involved wanted to screw with the formula that made the first one a mega-success. The only things that really changed were the location obviously, and an insignificant subplot involving Harry and Marv robbing a toy store. Nearly everything else was exactly the same, even Kevin befriending a weird recluse (this time a homeless lady covered in bird shit). You can’t blame them for going back to the well, and they had to get a sequel in before Macaulay Culkin grew pubes on his chin, but it was a little too obvious of a cash grab.

Die Hard 2: John McClane needs to stop some terrorists on Christmas. Again, like Home Alone 2, basically the exact same plot as the original in a different setting. At least they tried to sprinkle in a few new elements, like McClane wearing shoes the whole time, and… no it was really just the same thing.

Point: Really a toss up, but Die Hard 2 probably tried 1% harder to make the plot a little different



Home Alone 2: It’s always delightful to see someone get blasted in the face with a brick.

Die Hard 2: The part where McClane ejects out of the plane when the grenade explodes looks worse than your grandmother wearing my boxers for a dress.

Point: Home Alone 2



Home Alone 2: Nearly every Christmas song you can imagine is in this, plus an fun orchestral score from John Williams.

Die Hard 2: I think there was one, maybe two Christmas songs in the movie, with kind of a generic action soundtrack from Michael Kamen.

Point: Home Alone 2



Home Alone 2: Won: People’s Choice Awards – Favorite Comedy Motion Picture (tied with Sister Act)

Die Hard 2: Nominated: Award of the Japanese Academy – Best Foreign Film

Point: Home Alone 2



Home Alone 2: Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhh… the Talkboy?

Die Hard 2: Quite possibly the greatest TV dub in history.

Point: Die Hard 2


I’m as surprised as you are, really. But to be honest, Die Hard 2 is pretty crappy, and Home Alone 2, while a cheap copy, really isn’t that bad. On its own merit, if its predecessor never existed, it would probably be viewed more fondly. On that same token, Die Hard 2 would be just another run-of-the-mill action flick. So I think this makes sense. If only they combined these two franchises… DIE HARD ALONE!

What do you think? Did we score the fight fair? Which movie won on your scorecard?

19 thoughts on “Hard Ticket to Ho-Ho-Home Video: Home Alone 2 Vs. Die Hard 2

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