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  • Writer's pictureMatt Conway

Hocus Pocus 2: Review

Hocus Pocus 2 Synopsis: Two young women accidentally bring back the Sanderson Sisters to modern-day Salem and must figure out how to stop the child-hungry witches from wreaking havoc on the world.

While opinions may vary on its quality, Hocus Pocus possesses a revered standing amidst many audiences' Halloween catalogs. Fans and detractors of the 1993 supernatural tale will likely agree about the film's unimaginative sequel, Hocus Pocus 2. The latest straight-to-streaming cash grab from Disney brews a cynical cauldron that results in oppressive boredom for viewers.

I don't necessarily treasure Hocus Pocus, but I respect the film as a decent byproduct of macabre and family-friendly sensibilities. Hocus Pocus 2 possesses none of the original's distinctive charms. Here is a film that strips all creative energy to placate the widest audience possible.

The screenplay meshes generic young adult drama and awkward fish-out-of-water comedy with little success, while Anne Fletcher's joyless, autopilot direction lacks any artistic merits. I've seen several Halloween-themed commercials framed with more passion and creative ingenuity than Hocus Pocus 2's blend of shotty visuals. Even for a Disney+ release, the lack of care is appalling.

The potential enjoyment of seeing stars Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy reunite as the wicked Sanderson Sisters is fleeting once viewers realize the characters receive little purpose from their screenplay. The trio of sisters lacks the comedic bite and devilish charisma that made them household names in the first place. Worst of all, there isn't a single frightful bone in Hocus Pocus 2's body. The movie negligently avoids carrying on its predecessor's mantle by presenting a bland, commercialized depiction of its source material's paranormal atmosphere.

Nothing here seems to be inspired by any innovative ideas. Instead, the final product is yet another example of The House of Mouse producing a factory-assembled attempt at siphoning nostalgic sentimentality from audiences. I hope Disney quits while they are ahead with their recent slew of passionless sequels and unnecessary remakes.

Hocus Pocus 2 is now playing on Disney+.


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