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Review Roundup: Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker & More Return For HOCUS POCUS 2 on Disney+

Review Roundup: Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker & More Return For HOCUS POCUS 2 on Disney+

The new sequel will premiere tomorrow, September 30, on Disney+.

Nearly three decades after the original film premiered, the Sanderson Sisters have returned for Hocus Pocus 2!

It's been 29 years since someone lit the Black Flame Candle and resurrected the 17th-century sisters, and they are looking for revenge. Now it is up to three high-school students to stop the ravenous witches from wreaking a new kind of havoc on Salem before dawn on All Hallow's Eve.

Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy return to their original roles in "Hocus Pocus 2," which also stars Sam Richardson ("The Tomorrow War"), Doug Jones ("The Shape of Water"), Hannah Waddingham ("Ted Lasso"), Whitney Peak ("Gossip Girl"), Belissa Escobedo ("American Horror Stories"), Lilia Buckingham ("Dirt"), Froy Gutierrez ("Teen Wolf"), and Tony Hale ("Veep").

Before the film's debut on Disney+ tomorrow, September 30, check out what critics have been saying about the highly-anticipated sequel below!


Claire Shaffer, New York Times: "While its new sequel, "Hocus Pocus 2," may be a blatant attempt by Disney to continue propping up its streaming platform Disney+ (where the movie has its debut), it manages to capture the same hokey magic of the original while creatively updating its humor."

Peter Travers, ABC News: "Everything from the sets to costumes and makeup is a high-style hoot. Watching the sisters lose a Sanderson lookalike contest to a trio from RuPaul's Drag Race is just one of the hilarious set-pieces, most of them too good to spoil here. But it is great to see Doug Jones again as Billy Butcherson, the hottie Winifred turned into a zombie for giving in to her flirtatious sister Sarah."

Jude Dry, IndieWire: "This year, the fun continues with a totally satisfactory sequel that brings the Sanderson sisters back to life one more time. OK, so the plot is basically the same and the jokes mere updates to the original. Why mess with a good thing when you can simply recreate it?"

Lindsey Bahr, AP News: "Midler, Parker and Najimy are all once again game to ham it up for the audience (and sometimes no one but themselves) with spells, songs and dances. But they are only part of this strangely amusing brew, with well rounded teen characters, and a very strong comedic supporting cast."

Peter Debruge, Variety: "One senses all involved trying to re-create the earlier film's sense of camp. "Hocus Pocus 2" is actually the better made film, even if it amounts to little more than a stealth remake, with strategic decisions about the present-day and old-Salem witch trios being engineered to allow for more sequels, whether or not its star trio return."

Chris Rovzar, Bloomberg: "As much fun as Midler and Parker seem to be having (Najimy is given nothing to do) it can sometimes seem that the intended audience for this film was ... whatever grand wizard at Disney was writing the checks. The movie is not scary, hilarious, suspenseful, or original. It is sometimes charming, but it lacks magic."

Lovia Gyarkye, The Hollywood Reporter: The Sandersons' entrance - a brash sequence of the earth splitting, the moon dimming, lightning crackling and, of course, a song and dance - loosens Hocus Pocus 2 considerably. The film steps into its status as an event. Winnie, Sarah and Mary are back, and this time they want both to live forever and be the most powerful witches in the world."

Robbie Collin, The Telegraph: "Even so, director Anne Fletcher successfully revives the original's spirit of chaotic fun - never more so than in a rousing cover of Blondie's One Way or Another, with Midler wellying out the lyrics while hypnotised Halloween revellers stomp in formation through the streets."

Brian Truitt, USA Today: "While in the first film they were goofy women with a penchant for out-of-nowhere musical showstoppers, the sisters actually felt dangerous, since they were straight up murdering children for youthful makeovers. In the sequel, the Sandersons are mere filler, rather than killer, in their attempt to be all powerful, more inept than ever and, in Mary's case, riding Roombas."


Watch the trailer for the new film here:

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