Hocus Pocus 2 review: Nostalgia is not enough
Disney’s Hocus Pocus has been a cult classic for 90’s kids and has attracted more fans throughout the years, making it a Halloween movie favorite. Now, almost 30 years later, the Sanderson sisters are back just in time for the spooky season with Hocus Pocus 2.
The original Halloween-themed comedy starring Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy and Sarah Jessica Parker, is a story about a teenage boy named Max who moves to Salem, Massachusetts with his little sister. While he struggles to fit into his new town, he awakens a trio of campy witches who were executed in the 17th century. The original Hocus Pocus was released in 1993, and despite it tanking at the box office, it has gained a fan base through airings on ABC and Disney Channel through the years.
Hocus Pocus 2 follows the original film’s plot closely with a black flamed candle being lit by a virgin. Though, this time it’s three high school girls that are the leads, played by Whitney Peak, Belissa Escobedo and Lilia Buckingham. And while the new sequel leaves out beloved characters like Max and his sister Dani, the original Sanderson Sisters are still the stars. The trio still dances their way through the film with the occasional song, steering their way through modern society.
The most memorable part of the sequel is the familiarity of the Sanderson sisters. The original actors did a fantastic job in portraying themselves identically to their characters of the 1993 film, bringing back the magic and nostalgia of the cult classic. However, the new actors in the sequel are not nearly as engaging as the actors in the original, or as well-developed. In a sense, the double-edged sword of highlighting the modern times in the sequel felt forced, and almost a bit cringey.
Hocus Pocus 2 is a nice dose of nostalgia for fans of the 1993 film, but ultimately offers nothing more; giving it a four out of ten rating.