Hocus Pocus is the feel good story about 3 brides of Satan and their quest to bathe in the blood of every child in Salem and complete their unholy covenant with the Dark Lord, Asmoday The Vile. Together with the fallen angels they shall take their rightful place at the feet of the Morning Star ready to bask in the Lake of Fire at the Last Judgment…this is a children’s movie?
The movie begins in 1693 with the Sanderson sisters, Winifred (Bette Midler), Mary (Kathy Najimy) and Sarah (Sarah Jessica Parker) luring Emily Binx to their hut in the middle of the woods. She is followed by her brother Zachary…What’s that?…Thackery? Well that’s a stupid name. I’m calling him Zachary. Zach watches the sisters brewing a potion that will steal the life force from any child that drinks of it. We find that it takes one drop of the potion in order to steal Emily’s life so why in the hell did they brew so much of it?
Zach’s attempt to stop the witches fails miserably and they turn him into an immortal cat. They are then somehow able to steal Emily’s life force and make themselves about 12 years younger, which is total bullshit because Zachary dumped out the cauldron and the witches never actually gave any of the potion to Emily. Watch it again if you don’t believe me. I’ll wait……..ok, I have to actually finish this so just try to catch up when you’re done.
“Their outlines were human, semi-human, fractionally human, and not human at all — the horde was grotesquely heterogeneous.” – Winifred as she thinks that a sprinkler system is burning rain of death.
The townsfolk arrive and hang the sisters but not before they recite a spell that will resurrect them from the dead if a virgin does…something on Halloween. The spell doesn’t get into specifics and definitely never mentions a black flame candle.
We meet Max (Omri Katz) and his family who have just moved from California to Salem, Massachusetts. I’m guessing the father was some sort of mob enforcer and was placed in Witness Protection until he can testify against the Moretti Family…or he got a new job or something. Moving across the country is a huge transition for any child so in order to make things easier for their 10 year old daughter, Dani (Thora Birch), the parents decide to go to a Halloween party at the Town Hall instead of taking her trick or treating. In fact, the only parents that are at this party are the ones who have children that are trick or treating age. All the other adults are either just handing out candy or hosting an Eyes Wide Shut style orgy. Salem’s just full of a bunch of deadbeats and old perverts.
Max and Dani meet up with Alison(Vinessa Shaw) and they decide to go to the Sanderson Sister’s old house which has been turned into a museum. Once inside Max decides to light the Black Flame Candle which will raise the dead if lit by a virgin. And just like that, the witches appear. In 300 years I guarantee you that lots of teenagers have dared one another to light this candle on Halloween but obviously they weren’t all sexless losers like Max, amiright?
With the help of Zachary Binx, who is still a cat, Max, Allison and Dani are able to escape with the spell book. Winifred then reveals that the spell only works for one night and when the sun comes up they will turn to dust. The only way to stop that is to brew more of the potion and suck the lives out of all the children of Salem before sunrise. That extremely vague spell sure does have a lot of provisions and bylaws attached to it.
Binx reveals that he’s spent the last 300 years guarding the Black Flame Candle so that no one lights it. So, he has basically been training to be a complete failure for the last 300 years. The witches catch up to them and Winifred recites a spell that brings her former lover, Billy Butcherson, back to life so he will go after the children for her. Once again, another immortality spell that requires no potions or ingredients and is like 10 words long. If the potion that they need to brew is so important then why didn’t they memorize it like they’ve memorized every other spell.
The kids decide to go to town hall to enlist the help of their parents. Of course their parents don’t believe them. They would instantly believe them if the talking cat that they have would, oh I don’t know, talk. The Sandersons show up to the party and sing “I Put A Spell On You” with altered lyrics that are actually a spell that will make the parents keep dancing until they die. Spell that grants them eternal life: don’t bother to learn it, spell that makes people dance for a long time: better commit that shit to memory.
“Who knows the end? What has risen may sink, and what has sunk may rise. Loathsomeness waits and dreams in the deep, and decay spreads over the tottering cities of men.” – Mary whilst being afraid of a tv commercial.
Our heroes lure the witches to the high school where they manage to lock them in a walk-in kiln and burn them alive.
The children, believing the witches to be dead because they watched their flesh slough from their bones, go back to Max’s house and even though it’s 3:00 in the morning they aren’t concerned in the slightest that their parents aren’t home. They even know that a spell was placed on their parents. They open the spell book to see if their is any way to reverse the spell on Binx but it sends a shaft of light that the witches see and they fly off to retrieve it.
They steal the book and Dani and fly toward their house where they are able to brew another batch of potion. Now wait a minute, the ingredients for this potion are oil of boil, a dead man’s toes, newt saliva and a dash of pox…did this museum keep these things stocked for authenticity?
“Sanctus Satanas, Sanctus Dominus! Diabolus Sabaoth! Omnes Coram et Tenebrae!” – Sarah as she’s hopping around like a buffoon.
Max, and Allison show up and steal the book again and take off to the cemetery for the climactic final battle with the witches. It’s really just a bunch of broom flying and swatting until the sun comes up and the witches explode. The curse is lifted and Binx can finally be reunited with his sister and they walk away together free to terrorize any foolish mortals now that there is absolutely no one left to stand in their way.
*Author’s Note – Apparently most of these quotes were not from the Hocus Pocus but were in fact from the writing of H.P. Lovecraft. My deepest apologies.