hocus pocus 2 the sanderson sisters

Review: ‘Hocus Pocus 2’ Revives The Magic In A Charming Follow-Up

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HOCUS POCUS 2 (2022)

Thirty years after the debut of the film that would eventually become a cult classic, the Sanderson Sisters return in Hocus Pocus 2, a sequel that beats all expectations and revives the humor, charm, and endless fun we’ve come to expect.

In the film, the Black Flame Candle is once again lit and it’s up to three high-school students to stop the returning Sanderson Sisters and save Salem. I was incredibly nervous about this highly-anticipated sequel; it’s more common than not that follow-ups like this take what has come before and rerun it without much to add. Thankfully, Hocus Pocus 2 takes what has come before, pays homage to it, and delivers a sequel that is an absolute blast thanks to Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy who have not missed a beat. Writer Jen D’Angelo has crafted a tale that highlights the witches’ relationship while bringing fresh new talent to the stage in Whitney Peak, Lilia Buckingham, and Melissa Escobedo. 

Director Anne Fletcher brings the world of the original film back to life both in visuals and in tone, bringing back the magic and capitalizing on it. It’s a campy film that knows what it is doing and leans into it, the additions of Tony Hale and Sam Richardson delightfully entertaining value-added. Hannah Waddingham is bewitching in her small, but memorable role. In the end, I just had a ton of fun with the return of characters that are incredibly memorable for their chaotic antics and quick quips, something that continues here. You can tell that the entire cast is having the time of their lives, especially Midler, which makes the film all the more entertaining.

Is this a sequel that we needed? No, but I am glad it exists and that it was delivered with care and an understanding of what made the first such a hit. In terms of legacy sequels, Hocus Pocus 2 is an undeniable winner. Welcome back, witches!

Hocus Pocus 2 hits Disney+ tomorrow.

Rating: 5/5

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