Due to the first film being so good and this being a much-wanted sequel, I feel this would be a great first film review. So, let’s begin the most honest, truthful film review of Hocus Pocus 2.
[For legal reasons I have to state that there could be some references to the plot and therefore spoil your watching. But if you are going to watch films does it bloody matter if you read spoilers? If it’s a good film, you’ll watch it anyway!]
First thing, after watching the trailer I was wondering why the cat would be in it as at the end of the first film, Binks’ curse was gone and he was laid to rest and just as the film was starting I remembered that in the first film the candle only brought the witches back for one night only. Now in most sequels they just ignore plot details such as those and just milk the original, however, in Hocus Pocus 2 the writers, I am surprised, have actually acknowledged these little details and despite the film being made to try and milk the first film they have at least attempted to add some originality to the sequel’s story.
The start of the film had me thinking “oh here we go” as the film is based around three girls and if that was done with three boys then it would cause outrage but witches are generally cast as girls (a bit of a stereotype) so I don’t care about that, however, the film does pander to PC guidelines – obviously a film about them kidnapping kids was never going to be allowed, yet the sudden growth of a conscience for Winifred at the end kind of spoils it as at the end of the first film the other two die and she is still trying to suck his life as she is turning to stone – she didn’t care too much of her sisters then so why the sudden change? The ending is too much of a friendly, go-home happy ending, something which could have been better.
Another, little issue is with the spell book. In the original, when Max smashes the glass and grabs the book, he just runs off with it. This time when, Becca (I think) grabs it off the shelf, the book takes off while she is holding on to it.
My verdict is that it’s not a bad film, but it certainly won’t be a cult classic like the first. Some films are so good that we want a sequel to it – like Dumb and Dumber, Beetlejuice, A Nightmare before Christmas and of course the original Hocus Pocus. Now, with Dumb and Dumber the sequel is just a blatant remake and Hocus Pocus 2 – despite actually having an original plot separate from the original – was just made to make money and bring Hocus Pocus to the future generation – probably moving towards making more sequels (I hope not! Just leave Hocus Pocus alone now, before its legacy is completely ruined).
Some films can get away with sequels, but Hocus Pocus was one of those films that should have been left alone (along with Beetlejuice and A Nightmare before Christmas – although if Tim Burton is involved then they should be decent sequels) and that is shown in this. Do check Hocus Pocus 2 out, it’s worth a watch but you won’t be drawn to it as much as the first film.
If I have to give it a rating, I’d give it a 6.
That’s my review and I’ll probably make another one next year for Hocus Pocus 3! (There will be a third one!