Otherwise, known as the post where I mention pretty much every movie or TV show I should be ashamed to admit having watched.
It’s been a long, long time since I sat down and watched Hocus Pocus all the way through. Some of it . . . well, it’s a little cringe-worthy, honestly, but, mostly, it’s fun cringe-worthy, and a lot of parts are pretty genuinely amusing.
Here are a few notes, cause, well, that’s my thing:
1.) Being an NCIS fan, it is downright hysterical to watch little McGee as Thackery Binx. Sadly, we’re not actually listening to Sean Murray’s voice—both human Thackery and cat Thackery are actually voiced by Jason Marsden (who’s done a lot of voice work in his career, including a character in almost every animated version of Batman show there is, and also Haku in Spirited Away. Oh, and for work in front of the camera: he’s J.T.’s friend in Step by Step! Ha! And . . . how is it that I remember nothing that I learned in high school, but I still remember Step by Step? My brain is screwed.)
2.) Thora Birch, all of 11 years old in this movie, pretty much steals every scene that she’s in. I kind of miss Thora Birch. And I sort of want to watch Now and Then again. (Yes, yes, I know. I liked that AND Step by Step. Cinema philistine. I have no real excuse for Step by Step, other than being young and kind of without taste before the age of 12. I still like Now and Then. I’m a sucker for childhood friendship and bitter adulthood stories. Sue me.)
3.) According to imdb, Leonardo DiCaprio was originally offered the role of oh-so-angsty-in-his-tye-dye Max, but he turned it down for his Oscar nominated role in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? How different Hocus Pocus could have been. I’m sure the decision haunts Leo till this day.
4.) Apparently, in California, we hate Halloween. Just thought I’d throw that out there. Skeptical bastards.
5.) I came to a realization while watching Sarah Sanderson (Sarah Jessica Parker) in Hocus Pocus: it’s just as if Brittany from Glee suddenly became an evil witch. I mean, I think that’s the kind of witch Brittany would be. Maybe a little less jumping up and down and singing “Amok” over and over again, since B’s sort of low-energy. (Although, in Sarah’s defense, ‘amok’ is a pretty fun word.) But otherwise? Sarah Sanderson is so Brittany.
6.) Watching this movie does break my number one rule: Never Again Will I Watch A Film Where An Animal’s Mouth Is Made To Talk. Cause, if you’re going to have talking animals outside of a cartoon, you do it Homeward Bound style, with simple voiceovers and nothing else, dammit.
I’ll make an exception for Hocus Pocus. Just this once, though.
And if anyone tries to get me to watch Cats and Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore, I’ll scratch their fucking eyes out. I don’t care how many cool people—including, appropriately enough, Bette Middler—are in it. DEATH FIRST!
7.) Dude, this guy:
is also this guy:
and also this guy:
Movies are awesome.
8.) All right, so here is my utter lameness: I recognized Garry Marshall, who plays the guy dressed up as the Devil, but I couldn’t quite place him, although I was relatively sure that he usually played a schmuck. So I looked it up, and it turns out he’s the boss in Soap Dish, that one owner dude (or whatever his actual title is) in A League of Their Own, and the cop in Jumping Jack Flash, you know, the one who’s in danger of having his nuts kicked so hard that they lodge in his fuckin’ nostrils. So, at least I was right on the schmuck thing.
However, as I didn’t know the guy’s real name, I had no idea he was a director at all, and that he had films to his name such as, oh, Pretty Woman, Overboard, The Princess Diaries, etc. I mean, this guy practically bleeds chick flicks. And I also had no idea that the woman playing his wife, Penny Marshall, is actually his sister in real life, who directed most of the movies I recognized her brother from: A League of Their Own, Jumping Jack Flash, etc. Also: Big. (Blasphemy alert: never seen Big.)
And, on one hand, I feel utterly lame for never having known any of that. Bad, bad movie freak!
On the other . . . anyone else vaguely wigged by the brother and sister playing husband and wife? I don’t mind so much in the reverse, oddly, but bro and sis playing a married couple, even without the touching . . . not sure I could do that.
9.) I gotta say, the two bully kids in Hocus Pocus? I really think I could have taken them. In middle school. In fact, I’m pretty sure 11 year old Thora Birch could have taken them. Max, you pussy.
Also, ha! “Ice” is actually Larry from BTVS. I knew I recognized that guy from something.
10.) Finally, if you know that the witches can’t get you if you’re surrounded by salt, and you know that they’ll turn to dust as soon as the sun rises (which isn’t all that far off), why doesn’t every character get in the grave encircled by salt and just hang there until morning? I mean, I get that it’d be cramped and all, but really? You only need to squish together for about ten minutes. I think you can do it. I really do.
I guess that wouldn’t be a terribly dramatic resolution. But I think it’d be pretty fucking funny.