Most people didn't like Home Alone 2 because it borrowed too heavily from the first film. I don't mean the traps for the burglars, but things like the storyline between Kevin and the bird lady is near identical to the subplot in the first movie with Kevin and they old man shoveling snow.
Also, critics griped that the traps were too violent, and not as family-friendly as in the first film (I guess they forgot about Marv getting a nail shoved up his foot. THAT was pretty disturbing!).
Well, I do admit that the "judging the book by its cover" is used in all four movies. But I think HA2 perfected it with the two turtle doves. I like what the toy store owner says about them.
The violence is what I absolutely LOVE about this movie. My friend and I would safely renact the scene with the bricks. I don't know what object we used, but we hold the "brick" and pretend it hit us.