Home Alone 4 (also known as Home Alone: Taking Back the House) is a made-for-TV holiday comedy film. Originally broadcast on ABC on November 3, 2002, it is the fourth installment of the Home Alone series.
Peter is about to get divorced from Kate and announces that he is living with his new girlfriend, Natalie. He tells his three children, including Kevin, that they are hosting the visit of a royal family and invites everyone to spend Christmas with him and Natalie. After initially refusing, Kevin takes his father up on his offer after being tormented by his older brother Buzz.
Kevin enjoys life at Natalie's mansion, until he goes into the security room, where he runs into the butler, Mr. Prescott. While Natalie and Peter are away, Kevin notices his old nemesis Marv and new sidekick Vera (taking the place of Harry) outside the house. Kevin drives them away by flooding the house, but Peter and Natalie arrive while Kevin is cleaning up and Peter does not believe Kevin's explanation. He attempts to use the security camera footage to prove himself, but discovers that the camera had been turned off and is caught by Mr. Prescott, who Kevin now believes to be Marv and Vera's ally.
At a party for the royal family, Kevin notices Marv and Vera dressed up as caterers. Kevin has them fall out and break his bedroom window, then has Mr. Prescott frozen in ice. The royal family are unable to attend the party because their flight was cancelled so Peter and Natalie instead announce their engagement. When Kevin breaks his promise not to mess up the special occasion, Peter gets mad and believes that Kevin is trying to end his relationship with Natalie.
Since no one believes him about the heist, Kevin decides to deal with matters himself, and sets booby traps for Marv and Vera and locks Mr. Prescott in the basement. But then he discovers Marv and Vera's real ally is actually Molly the maid, who turns out to be Marv's mother. Kevin gets locked in the basement; after apologizing to Mr. Prescott for misjudging him (and vice-versa), Kevin manages to escape through the dumbwaiter. He then runs to the bedroom and plays a recording of Marv, making it sound like he is insulting Vera, which causes her to break up with him. He also gets Molly trapped in the elevator. Marv and Vera end up swinging from a chandelier, fall and are knocked unconscious. Molly, having escaped, grabs Kevin, but Mr. Prescott knocks her out with a serving tray.
As Peter, Kate, Buzz and Megan arrive, they and Kevin chase Marv and Vera out of the house and trip them up. The royal family and Natalie arrive and Natalie is confused when she sees Marv, Vera and Molly getting arrested. Prescott resigns and the royal family choose to spend their Christmas with the McCallisters instead of Natalie. Peter then breaks up with her and Natalie hyperventilates. The McCallisters embrace as the film ends.
- Mike Weinberg as Kevin McCallister.
- French Stewart as Marv, Vera's husband.
- Clare Carey as Kate McCallister, Kevin, Buzz and Megan's mother.
- Jason Beghe as Peter McCallister, Kevin, Buzz and Megan's father.
- Gideon Jacobs as Buzz McCallister, Kevin and Megan's brother.
- Chelsea Russo as Megan McCallister, Kevin and Buzz's sister.
- Missi Pyle as Vera, Marv's wife.
- Joanna Going as Natalie, Peter's girlfriend and Kevin's about-to-be-stepmother
- Erick Avari as Mr. Prescott, the butler.
- Barbara Babcock as Molly, the maid and Marv's mother.
- Lisa King as Queen
- Craig Geldenhuys as Prince
- Andre Roothman as King
The film may be set in between the events of Home Alone and Home Alone 2, because in the original Home Alone film, Kevin is stated to be eight years old, and in Home Alone 2, Kevin tells a hotel manager that he is ten years old. In Home Alone 4, Kevin tells his mother he is nine years old, which would make the film an "interquel". However, no official announcement has confirmed this, and there are an infamous amount of continuity errors associated with this idea.
This film is most commonly criticized as the worst in the series for recasting every character. It has received many negative reviews from critics.
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