Hocus Pocus came out in 1993 and became an instant hit among youngsters, and a complete flop among critics. Few movies are so ubiquitous yet so polarizing. As kids we remember thinking Hocus Pocus was great. We were somewhere between 8 and 9 at the time and while the movie definitely deals with some adult themes, we mostly just liked Thora Birch being a tenacious little nuisance.
But Hocus Pocus as an adult hits a lot different. We found ourselves kind of in shock a couple times at how dark it gets. I mean, a little girl gets the life sucked out of her in the first five minutes of the movie. It’s not graphic or anything, but ultimately we’re still left with a dead kid slumped over in a chair. Not to mention Sarah Jessica Parker’s character altogether. She definitely got a lot of young boys into goth girls. There’s tons of innuendo and while we think this is a movie safe for kids, it’s clear the original aim was at teenagers.
To us, Hocus Pocus seems like a different movie that Disney never should have had their hands on. One for an older crowd that they didn’t quit scrub well enough before releasing to the masses. Where’s THAT movie? Not unlike with their version of fairytales, Hocus Pocus suffers from bad Disneyfication and ultimately a downgraded experience. Sure, as an 8 year old plot holes slide past us completely unnoticed, but as an adult there are some glaring things in here that point to Disney not toally having a grasp on what they wanted to do with this.
That said we did still have a lot of fun watching it. The Sanderson sisters are classic characters played by three women of enormous talent. It’s impossible not to be enchanted by each of their performances, though we do wish they had let Bette Midler’s character Winnie be a bit more of a straight man. The movie is really fun and the boy is smooth as HELL. It’s still good, we just found ourselves poking holes in it as adults.
So what do you think of Hocus Pocus? Is it a Halloween classic or have you moved on from it? Let us know over on Twitter or in the YouTube comments! For now though, grab a vacuum and settle in for today’s episode of So…I’m Watching This Show!