“Hocus Pocus 2”

Should you watch it? YES


Kathy Najimy as Mary Sanderson, Bette Midler as Winifred Sanderson, and Sarah Jessica Parker as Sarah Sanderson in Disney’s live-action HOCUS POCUS 2, exclusively on Disney+. Photo by Matt Kennedy. © 2022 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

River Abernathy, Staff Writer


Almost 20 years ago, in 1993 a classic Halloween movie was born, “Hocus Pocus.” This cult classic was directed by Kenny Ortega, the same director of the movie “High School Musical.” It features Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy as the Sanderson sisters/witches. It also stars Omri Katz, Thora Birch and Vinessa Shaw. The story is about Max and Dani, who moved from Los Angeles to Salem Massachusetts. Dani, Max and a girl named Allison soon set out on a supernatural adventure to defeat the Sanderson sisters–witches who have an evil agenda and a vendetta with the town of Salem.

Just in time for Halloween, a sequel to this cult classic has been released. “Hocus Pocus 2”  features Whitney Peak, Belissa Escobedo and Lilia Buckingham. The film also has some of the original cast, which is the three Sanderson witches. This fantasy comedy begins in the 1600’s, then leads into present day Salem. Majority of this film shows modern day life from the view of teenagers, making it more relatable for high school students. 

This tale has three main characters, Becca, Izzy and Cassie.  Izzy and Becca are more close with each other than they are with Cassie. The conflict between the friends is apparent. Izzy and Becca celebrate Becca’s birthday, but they do so in the woods. Going into the woods at night is never a good idea. They accidentally summon the Sanderson witches, creating the same supernatural feel as the original “Hocus Pocus” film. Cassie eventually finds out about the witches and helps her friends.

To compliment the heartfelt and exciting plot, were many great filmmaking techniques. The aspects I most respect about the film are costume design and acting. Bette

Midler was especially good. She plays Winifred Sanderson so well, making the audience feel as though she is actually from the 1600s. She is cunning, yet makes the audience laugh countless times. And, spoiler alert, Bette Midler even sings. She is using all of her skills as an actress to make watching this film a good experience. But, who can forget Sarah and Mary Sanderson. Mary, played by Kathy Najimy, is so goofy and fun. She always says outrageous things. As for Sarah Jessica Parker, it takes real skill to play such an idiotic character as Sarah Sanderson. Though she is not as cunning as Winifred, she is an amusing character.

As for the costume design, who would not love the Sanderson sisters’ costumes? Salvador Perez, the costume designer, managed to transport me to the 1600s with the witches’ costumes. In spite of the costumes looking a few centuries old, they had a modern feel. It takes talent to work two very different centuries into one dress. There are several unique and well done witch costumes in this film. It is clear that a lot of thought was put into all of the outfits. 

This was one of the only sequels where I was not disappointed. The acting was well done, the costumes were amazing, the plot and ending were heartwarming. It included all of the elements that mattered from the first movie as well. “Hocus Pocus 2” even included scenes to better explain the first movie. It was never known how, when, or why the sisters were witches. This film places a scene in the beginning, giving the audience an origin story. This origin story was my favorite scene, mainly because we now know more about the lovably evil sisters.

I give this film 4 out of 5 stars.