A Magical Mixed Bag: Hocus Pocus 2 Review


Hocus Pocus comes out just in time for the Halloween Season

Jacob Hallberg, Staff Writer

Hocus Pocus 2, a sequel to the 1993 classic, Hocus Pocus, was released late last month on Disney+. It features Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy reprising their roles from the original as the sinister Sanderson Sisters, once again risen from the dead to plague Salem. For fans of the original movie, Hocus Pocus 2 offers more scary and silly thrills. 

Hocus Pocus 2 improves on many things which the original struggled with. It features characters with relatable struggles and growth, a marked improvement over the flat characters of the original. The sequel also delivers a more positive message of empowerment through friendship. The returning characters are a joy, and it’s clear the actresses had a lot of fun reprising their roles. While most of the humor is directed towards children, there’s a lot that older audiences can appreciate in this film.

All that being said, Hocus Pocus 2 is not without its flaws. The movie opens with a flashback to Salem in the 1600s, when the witches were young girls. While this opening does set up a few things seen later in the story, its inclusion is altogether unnecessary and merely bloats the story. Another thing against this film is the near-constant product placement. While corporate sponsorships are a fact of life in modern films, the product placement in Hocus Pocus 2 is particularly egregious. The plot also feels a bit unfocused around the middle of the movie, a problem shared with the original, although it does manage to bring everything together for a satisfying third act. 

All in all, Hocus Pocus 2 is a perfect movie for getting into the Halloween spirit. While it has some issues, they don’t stop it from being a competent sequel, sure to please new viewers, and fans of the original.