Film Review: Hocus Pocus (Delightful)

It’s just a bunch of Hocus Pocus!

hocus pocusI’ve loved this film for 20 years. 20 years! As far as I can remember, this came out in the cinema back in October 1993 when I was a little girl. While I missed it on the big screen, I’ve made up for that by watching this delightfully spooky movie a few times a year, okay, way more this year since my three year old niece adores Hocus Pocus at the moment. And if she wants to put it on again when she visits, I can hardly say no. πŸ™‚

The year is 1693 and The Sanderson Sisters, Winifred (Winnie), Sarah and Mary, played by the fabulous Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy,Β  are up to no good. The townsfolk are none too happy when they discoverΒ  the body of one of their children murdered by the witches. The three sisters are hanged for their evil spell (sucking the life out a child), but before they die, Winnie manages to cast one last spell.

“On all Hallows Eve when the moon is round, a virgin will summon us from under the ground. We shall be back, and the lives of all the children of Salem shall be ours.”

Fast forward 300 hundred years and teenager Max, new kid in town, decides the best way to impress a girl is to bring her to the Sanderson Sisters museum, the former residence of our three witches, and drag his little sister along. There, he lights the black flame candle, the very same candle that is said to bring back the witches should it be lit by a virgin. Fun and fabulous Halloween high-jinks ensue.

The autumn colours, the pumpkins, the costumes, theΒ  black cat, and all the trimmings of Halloween are present in Hocus Pocus. The setting, the landscape, the cinematography are just stunning. The film was shot twenty years ago but it’s aged so well. The cast is superb. I love every single character. I remember having the biggest crush on Omri Katz who plays Max when I was a kid – I loved him in Eerie Indiana. Anyone remember that show? I think he gave up the acting gig shortly after Hocus Pocus, a pity. I asked my niece who her favourite witch was and she chose Sarah. I couldn’t pick. They’re each a hoot in their own way.

For anyone who is a big fan of Halloween and hasn’t seen Hocus Pocus yet, please go rent or buy it this year. Fun for the whole family guaranteed!

Happy Halloween everyone. I’ll leave you with a performance by The Sanderson Sisters. “I put a spell on you, and now you’re gone gone gone – so long…”



About Emma

Buffy fan, avid reader, writer.
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33 Responses to Film Review: Hocus Pocus (Delightful)

  1. I think more movies should have musical numbers like that. Or maybe only if they have Bette Midler. πŸ™‚

    I confess that when I read the name “Omri Katz,” my brain immediately said, “John Ross!” It’s a little alarming that I remembered that so well, thirty years after the fact.

  2. I love this film, it’s wonderful. Bette Midler is awesome in it.

  3. I love, love love this movie! I have it on DVR and plan to watch it tonight!

  4. I know I’ve seen it, but just can’t remember it! I guess that warrants watching it again!

  5. Oh, I love this movie! I need to see if Netlix has it on streaming, if not, I need to buy it. I usually watch ‘Nightmare Before Christmas’ on Halloween, and now I’m thinking I need to add this to the mix. It was so much campy fun that just reading your post about it makes me all giddy and happy. If I recall, Sarah Jessica Parker was the cutest ditzy witch in the world. Yeah, I need to see it again. And again.

    • Emma says:

      Hey, Tameri. I see Tiffany’s comment below about ABC, maybe they’re showing it again tonight. You know I’ve only seen Nightmare Before Christmas once, and I’m not sure I even saw the whole movie, will have to fix that. Sarah Jessica Park is the cutest ditzy witch ever.

  6. Such a good movie… I’m glad ABC Family has been airing it all month long to accompany AMC’s Fear Fest. πŸ™‚

  7. Shah Wharton says:

    Oh I loved this movie! Happy Halloween Emma! πŸ™‚

  8. Debra Kristi says:

    Love this film!!! It’s always great for this time of year. How fun that you pulled it out in time for Halloween.

  9. Mae Clair says:

    I loved this movie. I’ve seen it so many times, and never tire of it. (I need to buy it on DVD). And hey, I remember Eerie, Indiana. I’d completely forgotten about that show until you mentioned it. Happy Halloween! What a fun post!

    • Emma says:

      I think I have a few copies in the house, you know, just in case I lose one. πŸ™‚ I must find out if I can get Eerie Indiana on DVD. Happy Halloween.

  10. I’ve always found that movie cute. πŸ™‚

  11. Paula Cappa says:

    One of my favorites! Thanks for the reminder.

  12. Ashley Hill says:

    I absolutely love this movie! I watch it all year round and last year when I found out my boyfriend has never seen it before (which is unbelievable and just won’t do), I made him sit down and watch it with me haha. He said, it was a pretty good movie.

    Hope you had a great Halloween, Emma!

    • Emma says:

      I’d so love to see it in the cinema. They should have released it to mark the 20th anniversary. Good for you making your boyfriend watch it. πŸ™‚

  13. Hmmmm, guess I better go rent it.

  14. M.S. Fowle says:

    I absolutely LOVE this movie! πŸ™‚ All three leading ladies are brilliant!

    Hope you enjoyed your Halloween! πŸ˜€ xoxo

  15. sherry fundin says:

    I haven’t seen the movie, but I do love Bette Midler, so anything she is in must be good. LOL

  16. setinmotion says:

    Oh wow! First off, doesn’t it blow your mind that its Sarah Jessica Parker in this? And secondly, this movie TERRIFIED me as a child! I can’t remember anything from the film except that there was a book made out of skin or something with an eye? Maybe my child-self made that up. Either way, it gave me nightmares and I never watched it again.

    Which isn’t too surprising when I think that I still hate scary movies.

    • Emma says:

      I know! She looks gorgeous in this and she’s so ditzy and fun in Hocus Pocus. Yep, you’re right about that book. It’s a bit gross when you think about it. πŸ™‚

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