By Ashley Cruz, Oct. 11, 2022

On Sept. 30, Hocus Pocus 2 released on Disney Plus. It has been almost 23 years since the release of the first Hocus Pocus movie. According to People Magazine, the Sanderson sisters’ return was a success, for the witchy film became the No. 1streaming movie in the United States.

Hocus Pocus 2 came right on time for Halloween with the Sanderson sisters making their return and their last goodbyes.

The film starts with Becca, played by Whitney Peak, as a high school girl interested in magic and awaiting Halloween night for her annual “spell-y” ritual, along with her friend Izzy, played by Belissa Escobedo. Becca and Izzy also have another friend, Cassie, played by Lilia Buckingham, who is placed in an awkward position where she has to choose her best friends or her popularity.

The resurrection of the Sanderson sisters in Hocus Pocus 2 comes with a twist as the movie is filmed in the time of our current modern society. The difference of the first Hocus Pocus film and Hocus Pocus 2 is the difference in film quality and plot.

The 1993 film had more action and was, for what it seemed, filmed in different places and not focused in just one film set. As for the sequel, it seemed there was less variety with its film spots and it was obvious that the filming was just in 3 three different locations: the school, forest and town.

Something about this new film seemed too modern and expecting when it came to its climax. The first Hocus Pocus was like every Disney movie a semi-musical while Hocus Pocus 2 was more like a Broadway show than a Halloween movie. Yet, the makeup, dressing and imagery of the new movie was much more artistic and clearer to see than the original.

Photo courtesy of Sierra Koder

The Sanderson sisters were portrayed by the same actresses as the 1993 film and seemed as if they had not aged at all. Thanks to modern day filmography, the film had drastically improved with its colors and lighting.

Another difference between the current film and the 1993 one is the main characters. In the first Hocus Pocus movie the main characters were mixed between both male and female roles, but for Hocus Pocus 2 it is mainly female roles. The idea of having main lead female roles continued onto the sequel has helped keep the idea that women can also have the spotlight without having to overdue themselves in films. With Disney, most main female roles were for princesses that came off as weak and in need of a man. Along came Hocus Pocus in 1993 and the main roles for females was more for themselves as women and encouraged women empowerment amongst each other.

Hocus Pocus 2 was different from the first Hocus Pocus movie, but definitely showed improvement in the roles of main cast and diversity, because not only was the main cast women, but also diverse in ethnicities.

Disney has kept its word in improving their movies, but also keeping it classic with the sequels and characters.  

Hocus Pocus 2 is now available on Disney Plus.   

Feature image courtesy of Sierra Koder

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