Hocus Pocus 2 is a 2022 supernatural comedy film and the sequel to the 1993 film Hocus Pocus. It is directed by Anne Fletcher, Step Up (2006), 27 Dresses (2008) and The Proposal (2009).
Actors Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kathy Najimy, and Doug Jones all reprise their roles from the original movie while Sam Richardson, Whitney Peak, Belissa Escobedo, Tony Hale, and Hannah Waddingham join the Hocus Pocus cast.
The first movie received mixed to negative reviews when it was first released, with criticisms targeted at the story. Likely, you may be wondering if it is worth watching, well, before going into the reviews for the 2022 version, it is equally important to not that the original movie as somehow become a cult classic.
How? With the help of DVD releases and annual airings on Disney Channel and other streaming platforms, many TV lovers have come to accept the goofiness of the movie. It has also become a Halloween season must-watch for several families.
Hocus Pocus 2 Reviews
Following its release on September 30, 74 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes gave it an approval rating of 5.7/10 and 26 critics on Metacritic gave the movie a 5.7/10 score as well. What do expert reviewers thing of this attempt at a sequel?
Benjamin Lee of The Guardian gave Hocus Pocus 2 two stars out of five in their review. They described the movies as being stuck between different times, audiences and tones, and failing to satisfy either. “At times it feels more like an extended, if joke-free, SNL skit than a real movie, giving us the iconography we want but without any of the soul, propulsion or bare necessity we need to go with it, something that exists because it could rather than should,” Lee writes.
Den of Geek writer David Crow’s piece does not follow the same stream of thought as other Hocus Pocus 2 Reviews. Crow lauds the fact that this sequel does not shy away from redoing a lot. However, the article also points at narrative issues like how Winifred knows a Blondie song. In the end, Crow confesses that they can’t recommend the movie to the new audience that should be the target.
For The New York Times, Claire Shaffer shows that the director brought the same goofy comedic approach that Kenny Ortega employed while directing the first Hocus Pocus movie. However, Hocus Pocus 2 attempts to update its humor to appeal more to its modern audience. Also, Claire wrote that the movie does well to not place its burden entirely on the returning cast members, and instead, spread it to the new actors that joined.
Richard Trenholm described the movie as another of Disney’s latest nostalgia-mining archive raid, in their review for CNET. The piece says that the movie lost some of its ‘sparkle’ in the second half. Trenholm argues that none of the new characters quite stand out, with their poor lines and uninteresting personalities. For this writer, it gets worse when the scenes start to show Harry Potter-like action/adventure because while it was obviously trying to appeal to the modern viewers, it deviates from the theme and ‘does go on a bit.’
With the few reviews we have read so far, it appears that Hocus Pocus 2 is a movie you watch without expecting much and with your critics cap off to be able to sit through it.
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