Hocus Pocus 2 Movie Review

Movie sequels have a tenuous reputation. They can either further a beloved narrative (i.e. The Empire Strikes Back), or they can be a supposedly easy cash grab that nearly destroys the reputation of its predecessor (i.e. Independence Day: Resurgence).

Last weekend, fans of Hocus Pocus were finally rewarded for our patience. The long-awaited sequel, Hocus Pocus 2, was released on DisneyPlus. Nearly thirty years after the Sanderson sisters, Winifred (Bette Midler), Mary (Kathy Najimy), and Sarah (Sarah Jessica Parker) were vanquished, they are brought back again by a couple of teenagers.

This time it is Becca (Whitney Peak) and Izzy (Belissa Escobedo) who light the black flame candle. The only way to stop the witches is with the help of their friend, Cassie (Lilia Buckingham), who has been spending all of her free time with her boyfriend. Working with the sister’s fanboy Gilbert (Sam Richardson), they know that Winifred, Mary, and Sarah must be stopped for good this time.

I could not help but smile during the film. The wait was worth it. It is as if the last 29 years have not existed. Midler, Najimy, and Parker slipped back into their roles as one would put on a beloved piece of clothing. The narrative is an organic continuation of the 1993 movie, taking the story in new directions in regard to the main characters.

The new characters also work well and are a nice extension of the original teenage protagonists. Becca, Izzy, and Cassie are an interesting mirror image of Winifred, Mary, and Sarah. For his part, Gilbert represents the myth of the witches that have grown within this world and within the fanbase.

It is a fun, exciting ride that takes the audience on a ride and ends in a manner that is lovely and unexpected.

The only thing that would have made it better would have been cameos from the original kid actors.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely.

Hocus Pocus 2 is available for streaming on DisneyPlus.

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Throwback Thursday: King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)

The legend of King Arthur is a potent one. A warrior who saves his kingdom from evil, leads a nation into prosperity and creates a democracy within his governing body is an ideal that we all strive for.

One of the newest iterations of the tale is King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017). Charlie Hunnam plays the title role. The purpose of his journey is to free the land and take the throne from his Uncle Vortigern (Jude Law).

This is one of those movies that looks good on paper. The cast is top notch and the narrative is a twist on a story that we all know. The problem is that it is bad. It also, like many films, has a lack of female characters, as compared to the number of male characters. I was only able to stomach a few minutes of the film before I had to turn it off. It is essentially unwatchable and boring.

Do I recommend it? No.

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