You’re listening to the A Beautiful Mess podcast, your cozy comfort. This week, we’re discussing one of the best Halloween movies, Hocus Pocus, directed by Kenny Ortega and starring Bette Milder, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy.
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Decor inspiration (really break this down) Anything you would use in your own home? Loved, hated, strong reactions, etc. …
Witches’ cottage – Iconic witches’ cottage
Max’s house – Steeple on top of house, mixture of adult and kid vibe in Max’s room with nautical wallpaper and tie dye, and a beautiful framed picture of the outside of the house
Allison’s house – Historical Colonial house and very classy
Devil house – Elsie’s favorite house in the movie, she loved the cardboard fire and smoke in front yard
Comment below with your favorite house from Hocus Pocus
Other cozy inspiration (fashion, food, drink or anything?)
The mom’s Madonna costume
Everything about the witches – dresses, brooms, hair, makeup, fake teeth, and the way they walk
Hocus Pocus Merch
- Love this cute Sanderson T-shirt
- Hocus Pocus Spell Book
- Witches Broom Door Mat
- I Put A Spell On You Banner
Rate the movie from 0-5 black flame candles:
Emma – 6/5
Elsie – 5/5
Miss an Episode? Get Caught Up!
- Episode #201: Hosting a Party (Deep Dive)
- Episode #200: Let’s Celebrate 200 Episodes!
- Episode #199: Home Updates
Episode 202 Transcript:
Elsie: You’re listening to The Beautiful Mess Podcast, your cozy comfort listen. This week we’re discussing one of the best Halloween movies, Hocus Pocus, directed by Kenny Ortega and starring Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy. This is one of my favorites.
Emma: I know. I was like, is it too basic to do Hocus Pocus? But also should we do it every year? Like that’s like my internal, you know, It’s too basic, but also we have to. Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. And I watched it just by myself one night, enjoying my life, loving it. So. Okay, before we get started about Hocus Pocus though, we’re going to do a personal opener. So, I told Elsie, this is like my thing for the week. On Friday, today is Wednesday as we’re recording. On Friday, Oscar is going to go on his first airplane ride, and I’m very excited about it. He’s only two. I didn’t fly on an airplane until I was like 17. So, very different childhood. And he won’t remember it, so it’s really kind of more for me and Trey, but I’m very excited. I actually think he’s going to do great. We’re flying to Costa Rica. We have a family trip for two weeks, and I’m very, very excited about it. I think he’s going to love the house we’re at. It has a pool. I think he’s going to love going to the beach. He loves a sandbox, so it’s like, here’s a giant sandbox. I think he’s going to love that. I doubt he’ll get in the ocean. He might, like, let it touch his feet. He’s a very cautious guy, so I’m really not. worried about any of that. I think it’s going to be really fun.
Elsie: So it’s his first time to a beach?
Emma: First time to a beach, first time on a plane. Yeah, so first time out of the country, he has his little baby passport where he’s like little baby in this picture. So I’m very excited about it. And I think he’s going to do great on the flights because it’s kind of early in the morning, which is like his best time of day because he’s just had his night of sleep. He really just likes observing, he’s a very observant kid, and he just stares at everything. Like anytime we do something new, like the first time we went to the dentist, he actually did great because I think he’s just like, this is new and I’m taking it all in. So, that’s kind of what I anticipate with the flights, but of course, I will also have his little backpack full of Band-Aids and toys and little things he’s never seen before that I’m going to buy at Dollar Tree the day before. Also, we will have a lot of Paw Patrol on our phone and if all else fails, he can just watch some Paw Patrol, which you don’t usually let him watch very much of that one because it’s not that educational. So it’ll be a good one for him.
Elsie: You sounded like a super snob just then.
Emma: I’m usually like, Sesame Street or Daniel Tiger, what do you want? He’s like Paw Patrol. I’m like, ugh. Okay. So anyway, he’ll get as much Paw Patrol as he wants if things go awry. But I think it’s gonna be good. And on the way home, it’s like the same flights but in the evening. So I kind of think that either he’ll sleep or we will have a little meltdown. And the last flight, like from Houston to Springfield, I’m going to do it just me and Oscar, because Trey has somewhere else he has to be. So I’m a little nervous about that. But I also think it’s very likely he’ll just sleep on me the whole two-hour plane ride. So I’m kind of hoping for that, but if it’s a meltdown, once again, we will be Paw Patrolling ourselves as far as that will take us. But I’m really excited, though. I have a list of, like, goals for my life that’s on my bulletin board at home. I know you’ve seen it. And one of them, because I think you should put work goals and, like, life goals because I just think that’s healthier. And one of my main ones is I want Oscar to have a healthy childhood full of adventure. And I just feel like we’re doing it. We’re doing it. This is like an adventure. He probably won’t remember it, but he will see the photos growing up and it’s gonna be a really fun adventure for me. And I’m just very excited about it. But as every parent knows, a trip with kids is not really a vacation. It’s a trip, but I’m viewing it that way. So I think I’m in the right mindset to have a successful great trip.
Elsie: Yeah, there are definitely different definitions of vacation after you become a parent, and it’s not the same. My advice is kind of like when you’re getting a tattoo. For me, personally, one of the lowest parenting points of my life was in an airport. So, that probably won’t happen. But, if it does, I think that the best, healthiest way to get through it is to just, like, visualize yourself tomorrow at home and realize that, like, this situation, it’s only a matter of time before it’s over.
Emma: It’s only, it’s only so many hours of people staring at me angrily. Yeah. No, that won’t happen.
Elsie: People are mean to parents on planes, they are. People are rude, and I think it’s a sad part of humanity, but it is true.
Emma: Yeah, and I will say too, I think you should try to be as kind as you can to people on planes with kids, especially if you notice that there’s a parent by themselves with one or more kids. Like just, they’re doing their best. Just let it go. But I also, think a lot of people get a lot of anxiety when they fly, and so they can not be themselves and not be their best selves. So if anyone’s rude to me, that’s what I’m gonna say in my head. I’m like, you’re probably anxious, so that’s why you’re being a dick, and I don’t care. So, you know. Because I get anxious when I fly, so it’s okay. You’re not your best version. You would probably be more generous if you weren’t on a plane and feeling… Whatever you’re feeling because who knows you never know what everyone else is going through.
Elsie: Well, I’m excited for you, and I hope that it goes perfectly and you’re like I could do this every time.
Emma: And also we’re not necessarily planning to take Oscar on like long, these aren’t really long plane rides and I’m not really planning to do that. I don’t feel the parenting bravery to like to take my kid to Europe right now. Some people go for it and I’m like that is great. I have way too much anxiety. Like flying on a plane by myself, I get kind of anxious. So me doing it with my son, I’m like, hey man, I’m just gonna be kind to myself and be like, I’m nervous about this and I’m just gonna do my best and I’m not gonna push myself farther than I feel like I could do because I just don’t, I want to set myself up for parenting success as much as I can. And I don’t do that well with travel. So I’m like, okay. You’re just gonna ease into this and it’s gonna be fine. And he can just watch Paw Patrol and that is fine. If his day is Paw Patrol and that’s not my best parenting day ever, that’s fine, we’re just gonna make it. So whatever. Yeah. Anyway, I feel like PAW Patrol should pay us for how much I talk about that show now.
Elsie: You did give a lot of name recognition just then. That’s funny. I hate it too, by the way, though, for the record. Okay, so describe the movie we’re back on Hocus Pocus now describe the movie for those who haven’t watched.
Emma: 300 years have passed since the Sanderson sisters were executed for practicing dark witchcraft, returning to life thanks to a combination of a spell spoken before their demise and the accidental actions of Max, the new kid in town, the sisters have but one night to secure their continuing existence. Yeah, for a Disney movie, like, it is very much a Disney movie, obviously, and I’m sure all our listeners have seen this movie because it’s a classic. But it is kind of edgy, like, when they, like, show their feet after they’re executed by hanging, you’re like, whoa, Disney, whoa!
Elsie: Yeah! I Would say, yeah, I wanted to address like what age is this for before we get into it. A lot of people have messaged me that this year and this is my very strong opinion. This is just an opinion. But, okay, for my kids, I have a five-year-old who loves it and an eight-year-old who still thinks it’s too scary. So I think that it is totally case by case and there’s nothing in it. My opinion, again, is there’s nothing in it that you can’t try at any age, I probably tried for the first time when they were toddlers still, just to see if they would watch it or be interested, and they just weren’t interested, you know, it takes a long time before kids are interested in anything that’s not a cartoon. Yeah. I think that it just depends on your kid. Yeah, for adults, it’s definitely, for sure, a kid’s movie. Like, there’s no world where I could, like, get my husband to watch this with me for fun. I watch it all the time in my kitchen.
Emma: Like one you can have a lot in the background. Once you’ve seen it, like Harry Potter.
Elsie: It’s a very good background movie for, like, if you’re making, you know, cookies or if you’re…
Emma: Decorating, and you’re like in and out of whatever room has your TV or whatever. Yeah.
Elsie: I just would keep it on a repeat. But I definitely do think it’s scary for some kids.
Emma: The witches are trying to kill children to help them be young and live longer. So those are, those are pretty dark things.
Elsie: And they look scary. Like, Bette Midler’s character particularly is kind of unhinged.
Emma: Yeah, they give her weird makeup. Her mouth especially, looks crazy because she has like the weird Queen of Hearts lipstick. You know how they would do it like that. She kind of looks like the Queen of Hearts now that I’m thinking about it. Maybe they kind of modeled it like Halloween Queen of Hearts or something. Anyway.
Elsie: She’s gorgeous.
Emma: Yeah. She’s a queen.
Elsie: Okay, so do you have any memories from when you first watched this movie? So I think this movie came out while we were kids in the 1990s. I don’t…
Emma: Yeah, I think it says in the trivia. 93.
Elsie: Perfect. I don’t have a memory of watching it as a child. I think I had an awareness of it, and you know, sometimes, like, you know of a movie and you can’t remember if you watched it or not, but, like, a movie like Hocus Pocus, you, like, kind of get it. You know what it’s gonna be, so it’s hard to know if you watched it as a child or if you just saw a commercial or something. Yeah, I definitely watched it for the first time in my 30s I think that you know, like if you are like a millennial woman on Instagram You are very aware of hocus pocus people just like talk about it so much. It’s a part of yeah, like the starter pack of being a millennial is watching hocus pocus every fall. So, I definitely started watching it in my 30s every year, and then since the invention of Disney Plus, it’s like on all the time, more than a lot. So I love it. I like to just like keep it going.
Emma: Yeah, same. I don’t remember watching it as a kid, and I really don’t think I did. Like, I don’t really have any memories of it at all as a kid either. You know how sometimes you didn’t see a movie, like, a big one would have been like Space Jam, which I did see as a kid. But it was in like a lot of, I’m sure it was in like McDonald’s commercials or like, you know what I mean? Like, it was kind of just like in culture. So even if you didn’t see it, you probably knew what Space Jam was. I don’t feel like this one was quite as big when we were kids. So it wasn’t like in McDonald’s commercials or whatever. So I don’t really remember it. I don’t have any memories of it as a kid. So there is no, like, nostalgia from childhood for it for me. But I feel like whoever I watched it with was in my 30s, probably early 30s. I feel like they had some childhood nostalgia with it. And so that, like, made it kind of fun. Because I feel like some people, have a similar story about Harry Potter, where they didn’t really read it as kids, or they didn’t watch the movies coming out. But now, once they get into it, especially if you talk with someone who has those childhood nostalgia, it kind of, like, adds a level. And then you just get into it, and then all of a sudden it becomes nostalgic for you because you watch it for two or three years in a row. And that’s enough time for nostalgia for me.
Elsie: That’s true, and, as a parent, I always say it’s your second childhood. I have experienced so many more kids’ movies and kids’ memories with my kids that now they’re my memories and they’re, like, my special things, too. As a mom, that’s, like, what it is.
Emma: That’s part of the joy, yeah, getting to redo childhood. I like, too, when you’re a kid, you kind of get, like, on a cycle because, you like repetition, kids like repetition. Their brains are developing, and as a parent, you’re a little more like pushing them to have different favorites. So in that way, you get to experience more than you probably did as a kid because you wanted the repetition because your brain was developing. I don’t know if this is making sense, but I just think like, that if it were up to Oscar, he would watch the same thing. Always, but we try to push him a little, you know what I mean? Or like let him try different foods, you know, just like you’re trying to give your kid repetition in a good way, but also routine, I think would be a better way to say it. But then also like to push them to try things. So anyway, let’s talk about decor.
Elsie: Okay, yeah, I love the decor in this movie. I feel like we’ve done a couple of rewatches recently where it was like the coziness wasn’t really coming from the houses in this movie. It is very visual. There’s a lot of houses in it, which you know, we love the the movie houses, one of our themes that we kind of stick on and yeah I was like rating each of them and I don’t think there’s for me any houses in this movie that are not a 10 out of 10. I love them all so much.
Emma: Yeah, and I feel like some of the movies we watch you can’t tell if it’s a real house or a set that they’ve built or Like a combination, you know, and this one it very much feels like sets for the most part. There are some real locations, exteriors especially and I kind of dig it. I feel like it works for like the kid and Disney vibe that it is and I like the costumes that they do which are not super realistic But they’re very vibey and fun. Like it just feels like the perfect amount of campy to me So it’s like I like that it kind of feels like sets and you get to enjoy them in that way Like a theater performance or, you know, whatever. So probably my favorite though is The Witch’s Cottage, even though usually I lean towards movie houses that I want to live in or like decorate my house like, and I don’t necessarily have anything about The Witch’s Cottage that I want to live in or decorate my house like, but it’s just so perfect. It’s like if you were like, close your eyes and picture a witch’s house. That’s what I’m picturing the Hocus Pocus cottage. So yeah, and the purple smoke that they have coming out of the cabin when they’re casting their spell to get kids. I don’t know. It’s just so Disney and fun. I love it.
Elsie: Yeah. I love it too. Okay. The next one I had down is Max’s house, which is, it’s like a white house with this little, like, I’m sure there’s like an architectural term, but it looks kind of like there’s a little lighthouse piece coming out of the roof. So it’s like a little small room that you can climb up into with a ladder at the very top of the house and look out, and it is a coastal house. So yeah, I’ve seen that. That’s definitely a real house in Salem, I think, because, people take pictures in front of it. Yeah. Oh my god, I would take a picture in front of that house so hard if I was there.
Emma: Yeah, trade with another tourist who’s doing the same thing. Like, yes. Yeah, and the ladder to go up, I believe, is in Max’s room because they kind of show it at one point. And I also just love Max’s room because it has a mix of like, this kind of like classic looking nautical wallpaper with sailboats. It looks like something an adult chose. But then he also has like this tie-dye, like he has a tie-dye shirt on when we first meet him and he also has like a tie-dye tapestry behind his drum set in his room. I just feel like it’s that mix of like when you’re a kid and it’s like some things look like your parents help you put your room together and then some things is like, I bought this a Hot Topic and hung it up and I’m excited about it, you know, and it’s like this mix of things.
Elsie: My kids definitely have that in their bedrooms. Like the stuff that you can tell I bought versus the stuff that you can tell is from Chuck E. Cheese.
Emma: Yeah. Exactly, and it just feels very real in a way and I just really like that. I also like that they make him like, he has the drum set and he seems like a whole person to me. They really made his character like a real teenage boy or preteen boy. I’m not sure how old he’s supposed to be in this movie.
Elsie: I think he’s supposed to be an early high schooler, so a teenager.
Emma: It’s like 13, 14, something like that. He probably says it in the movie, but I can’t remember. When she’s like asking him, Max, take me trick or treating. I feel like he says, I’m too old, but she’s like, you have to take me. Anyway, but yeah, the house is very cute. We don’t see a ton of other areas. I feel like there’s one like candle looking chandelier like a candelabra type chandelier, but they’re just like moving in, I do love this might be in the trivia But there’s a picture of the outside of the house Inside the house and you can tell they’ve just moved in so there’s no way they commissioned it. So in my mind, it’s like And I know it’s fiction, but in my mind, when they bought the house, the last owners left this and it stays with the house. It’s like a piece that stays. I’m like, I love that idea. Should I get a painting of my house, that’s classic looking, and then it stays with the house? I don’t know. I just love it. That detail is really like cool. Whatever set designer came up with that. I’m like, love it.
Elsie: It’s very cool. I would like, love to have a classic painting of my home, in my home. It’s like, it’s very cool. Okay, the next one I have is Allison’s house. So her house is like a very classic, historic home, colonial.
Emma: It looks kind of like Father of the Bride a little bit. Even though that’s Southern California.
Elsie: It looks like The Father of the Bride House, and her parents are having an adult Halloween party, so it’s like very fancy, it’s very decorated, it’s very fancy, it’s definitely the most, like, classy interior that you’ll see in the movie. And I love it, yeah. People always say that they think my house could look a little bit like that, which I love because it’s like, it’s a great compliment. And, yeah, I wish that they would have shown more of it because I feel like you mostly just see the entryway and maybe one room.
Emma: Yeah, I think they go up the stairs for a minute, so you kind of see like the banisters, or maybe she comes down the stairs.
I’m trying to remember. But yeah, you don’t see very much of the house, but what you do see does feel like it’s decorated fancy for like a period piece-type Halloween party, but it also feels like a fancier house, like upper middle class with old wood, like very New England, I don’t know, vibes.
Elsie: Her dress is kind of like, I don’t know, like a fancy dress you’d wear in Little Women to like one of the balls or something, so.
Emma: Yeah, it looks like Pride and Prejudice to me, something like that.
Elsie: Yeah, okay, so I have a couple more. Obviously, I love the graveyard. I think it’s perfect and like movie graveyards are, I think, objectively better than real graveyards. they’re just more detailed and more rich and real graveyards, they look like new.
Emma: They look new and they also are more… They’re not as fun, and I think that’s on purpose, they are a place you go to visit a dead relative. And so, I don’t know if they should be wacky and silly, you know, but in movies, they can kind of take more license because it’s not actually anyone’s relative, I assume. So, yeah. So it tends to be more vibes.
Elsie: So my favorite part of the movie is that they go trick or treating, so you kind of get to see a whole neighborhood of houses, one after another, and the kids in costumes. So cute. And my personal favorite home in the movie is the devil’s house! Let’s talk about the devil’s house for a minute. The inside, not so much. The outside is where it’s at. So, when you watch the movie next time, notice when they get to the devil’s house it is a devil-themed yard and what he has is a ton of what looks like cardboard cutouts of flames, red flames everywhere, and a lot of fake smoke. Pitchforks and it like brings me so much odd joy when I see them. One of the things I love about Halloween is that you can make something that like some people think is seriously scary into like a funny.
Emma: Oh, yeah. It’s very irreverent.
Elsie: Yes, that makes me happy.
Emma: Yes. I think, too, it’s an opportunity for us to explore our fears, you know? So, if you’re afraid of hell, or you’re afraid of death, or you’re, you know, I think we’re all kind of afraid of death because it means life will be over. And yeah, I think that’s part of it, too, is we can kind of face these things that are, that are scary, but we can do it in a bit of humor. So anything else about the Halloween scenes? Oh, one of my favorite parts from them trick or treating is there’s this one moment, I think it’s right as they start trick or treating, where a rainbow-looking skeleton just pops up. Kind of like the way they start the scene, where they transition. You know, and it’s just funny because I’m, I have a bunch of skeletons. I’ve never painted one rainbow. It has like face paint on or skull paint. I guess it wouldn’t be face paint. I don’t know. And it’s just very funny. And I just love all the little kid’s outfits too, like all the costumes I really feel like this might have been for budget reasons or it might have been on purpose. I don’t know. But some of them very much look like Halloween costumes that you just bought at Walmart or bought wherever, you know, Target, whatever, Kmart. I don’t know. And so it just feels more real. It feels like actual kids trick or treating. It doesn’t feel too perfect. It does feel like a movie where it’s like, wow, this neighborhood really goes for it. But I’ve seen neighborhoods like that, so it doesn’t totally seem unrealistic to me. So anyway, it’s great, that’s probably some of my favorite scenes in the movie are when they’re trick or treating because it just is the vibes of the season.
Elsie: I think that if you watched it a hundred times, you could probably find a hundred different little details that you had never noticed before. Which is a great thing for a movie that is on the re-watch list.
Emma: It’s true. I’m trying to think of any other cozy inspiration that we like. The cat? Oh, I love the talking cat.
Elsie: The talking cat is funny. No, I was going to say there’s like the City Hall Halloween party with the adults, and the mom has an amazing Madonna costume. And I love that they show the parents drunk. I think that like, I don’t know, there are certain things from Like older movies that they just, like, don’t do or show anymore. Like, the tone of new kids’ movies and the tone of kids’ movies from the 80s and 90s is very different. If you have, like, watched a lot of them, like, for example, in Home Alone, you know, the famous scene where he, like, borderline curses out the little child. That kind of thing is in like every old movie, and almost never in a newer one. Anyway, I liked that they showed the parents drunk because if they were at an adult party, that’s how it would be! And it was like Halloween, and it, like, kind of, like, I don’t know, it had a vibe to me. I liked it. I liked that they showed them coming out in the morning when it was almost daylight, like, coming out of the party all, sweaty and gross. I thought it was cute.
Emma: Because they’ve been under the spell of dancing till you die. So there’s that, too. Yeah, I think when they, like, get there and he’s like, Hey, Dad and the dad’s clearly, like, having a nice time, maybe a little buzzed. I guess it’s a little hard to tell, but to me, he seemed like he’s playing it, I’m a little buzzed. He’s like, Hey, Max. How are you doing? And then he’s like, Something’s wrong. He’s like, Oh, no. Where’s your sister? Like, it’s like one of those, like, I’m like, I understand that parenting moment. We were like, I’m just hanging out. I’m off duty parenting, and then all of a sudden you hear something and you’re like, wait a second, do I need to be like back on, you know, like that kind of panic moment?
Elsie: If my kids have like a tiny little, I’m like, are you okay? Yeah.
Emma: Should I take some water in there? Yeah. You’re like calm down. Yeah. Off-duty parent switches on to on-duty. I’m like, I know that feeling and that’s really cute. I feel like the actor did a nice, it’s just a nice little moment to me.
Elsie: It’s nice. It has aged very well. I can’t think of anything in the movie, we usually say if there’s something in the movie that was like, Really bad, no? And I can’t think of anything.
Emma: No, I mean, you have to know about the death and they’re trying to kill kids. You know, there’s some things like that for little kids. Yeah. You should know that. There’s also a point where they burn them in the pottery room, like, in the kiln. Yeah. That’s awesome. Great idea. But, like, you know, also, like, you know, if you’re showing it to your little kid, you might want to know that that’s part of the movie.
Elsie: I think I’m gonna get at least, like, one hate mail about how, like, this movie is not okay for kids, but it is on Disney Plus, and it is a kid’s movie. So, I just think everyone, like, you know, form your own choices.
Emma: I don’t know why you would send the hate mail to us. What am I going to do? You should send it to Disney. I don’t know. Apparently in 1993.
Elsie: Because I’m endorsing that my five-year-old likes it or whatever, but I’m not, I don’t know, whatever.
Emma: That’s because Goldie’s hardcore.
Elsie: She loves it. I can tell she likes the idea that she’s not scared.
Emma: Yeah, she’s like, I’m tough. Yeah. This is part of my brand. You’re like, okay. That’s great, Goldie. We support you. Yes. Yes. Yeah.
Elsie: I don’t know. I will say I don’t really think hardly any horror movies are scary, like, for me. Like, I don’t know. Some people are really, really sensitive to them, but I don’t even know why we’re having this conversation because this is a kid’s movie, so.
Emma: This is not a horror movie. No. No.
Elsie: It’s not. No. Okay, so should we do some trivia? Is there anything else before we jump into that?
Emma: No, I mean, the only thing I would point out is how iconic the witch’s outfits are because so many people wear them as costumes. Like, they’re iconic.
Elsie: They’re dresses, they’re costumes, they’re brooms. One of them has a vacuum that she switches to.
Emma: Yeah, they lose their brooms, so they have to find new ones.
Elsie: The hair, the makeup, the fake teeth, all of it.
Emma: The walk that they do, that’s like all three together, you know, it’s a really, like, vibe. I really feel like these three actresses, they like, really went for it in a way that I just love. I also think that Sarah Jessica Parker is a really different role for her than most other movies I’ve seen her in. She’s usually playing more of a like, sophisticated, independent woman who’s like, you know, doing something like she’s in a rom-com or she’s in Sex and the City or whatever. And this one, she’s very, you know, witchy and she’s meant to be kind of the dumb blonde of the group or something.
Elsie: She’s like, very spaced out and she’s also very like, flirtatious.
Emma: Yeah, yeah. So it’s just funny. It’s a very weird character and she just makes it really fun and really commits and they all do. And it’s very fun and vibey and campy.
Elsie: I love them. I love the songs. I will also defend Hocus Pocus 2. Is it as good as Hocus Pocus 1? No. It’s never gonna be. No, it was never gonna be. They are also making Hocus Pocus 3, so little shout-out for KJP. Every single time that they start filming in Salem, he like somehow gets drone shots of it and stuff and posts it and it’s all beautiful, you know, his way. Yeah, that’s how I found out about that.
Emma: He’s their marketing department.
Elsie: He kind of is, and he’s doing a great job. So, yeah, I can’t wait. It’ll probably come out next Halloween, but I will rewatch the first one the most. It’s kind of like Home Alone for me. I will always love the first one the most, but I think that the other ones, like, I’ll even just, like, speak ahead for Hocus Pocus 3, even though it’s not out yet. I know it’s gonna be good, and I know I’m gonna stand behind it.
Emma: I really liked the second Hocus Pocus. Yeah. I don’t know if I would say I like it more. Because I don’t really feel the need to pick a favorite. But I really liked it, and I was very happy to have another version, like another piece of this franchise. So, I don’t know. I don’t know if anyone else felt that way. Maybe I’m the only one in the world. But I was like, I thought it was just as good, just different. Like, it’s a different story, and they’re doing a different thing. But, yeah, I loved it. I thought it was great.
Elsie: Well, and I think after that much time passing, it’s pretty rare for all the actors to be willing and able to participate again. So it’s like really cool. It’s very special.
Emma: Maybe I had my expectations in the right place. Maybe, because it isn’t really a piece of childhood nostalgia for me, so there wasn’t anything that they could mess up. But yeah, so I loved Hocus Pocus 2. I think it’s great. I’m looking forward to a third one But I don’t really expect it to be better I don’t really feel I just so you know, I’m interested to have more of the franchise. Why not? I love witches It’s fun.
Elsie: Yeah. So, send us messages about what your favorite movie house is from Hocus Pocus, and every time you see the devil house, think of me. That’s how I want to be remembered.
Emma: You can be the devil in the scene and I’ll be the wife who’s like, the party’s over. Get out of my house. Like, she’s got the curlers in her hair. She’s not even wearing a costume. No, she’s clearly been in bed and she’s like, what’s this racket? Get out. You know, it’s still Halloween. Like, kids are out trick or treating. Yeah. I loved it very much. Yeah, it’s a good, yeah. All right, let’s do some trivia. All right, I’ll read the first one. The actor who played Billy wore a mouth rig, which is a latex pocket attached to dentures that blocked off his throat to make the moths come out. I know it sounds like It’s very cool. Kind of a stunt, really. So there was a small hole in the very back of the pocket so that he could cough some air into it. That doesn’t sound like breathing. It sounds like coughing some air into it. An animal wrangler would place several moths in the pocket with tweezers and then the stitches would be glued shut and they would try to get the shot as fast as possible. The whole, that whole thing sounds like drowning but not in water and I’m like, oh, that actor.
Elsie: This is like, my whole heart is like movies before special effects and how they achieved certain things. I love this, I love it. And I think it’s so cool that they used real moths and that they, you know, created this whole little system inside his mouth and he did that over and over for the movie. I think it’s very cool, and I’m sure now probably they would like CGI those little moths in there.
Emma: I would hope. That would be safer. But, yeah, that’s a commitment for sure.
Elsie: It’s magical. Okay, the film was released in July 1993 to take advantage of children being off from school during the summer. Okay, crazy like, that doesn’t make sense to me at all that you would release this movie in the summer when it is a full-on Halloween movie. Like, I think September 1st is the absolute soonest day.
Emma: It is, yeah. But there also, read the next part.
Elsie: Avoiding competition with The Nightmare Before Christmas, Disney’s other Halloween movie, which was released that year, which I will say is way more famous, or was in the 90s, way more famous than this movie, so that sucks to be them. That was like a scheduling error for sure.
Emma: Well, I think, too, it’s one of those moments where, what if you were like, Uh oh, we have two Halloween hits. We feel like these are both hits, but we can’t really put them out at the same time, because if we did, one’s going to get overshadowed. I’m like, what else would you do but release one in the summer? But it is wild to think about this movie coming out in July, because I’m like, I love Halloween, but I’m like, who wants to watch a Halloween movie in July? I’m like, I don’t know. Maybe if I had a down week. But it’s just wild.
Elsie: Okay, because it wouldn’t still be in the theaters at Halloween, so never in one million years would I think that that would create success for it, and it kind of makes sense why it got overshadowed by the other movie.
Emma: Yeah, and I’m sure there’s more to the story than what we have in front of us, but I do wonder if Their strategy was like, we’re not going to make the money in the theaters. We’re going to make the money on TV, like the syndication or the reruns or whatever the right term is. I don’t know. I’m not a movie executive.
Elsie: Well, that’s been true for sure.
Emma: Yeah. So wonder if they were like, here’s our strategy. We’ve got to get it out before Nightmare Before Christmas and then hopefully people like it enough that they’ll just rewatch it on their TVs come Halloween and they’ll go to the movie theater for Nightmare Before Christmas and we can just kind of double dip on the money as best we can. I don’t know.
Elsie: I will say, I love Nightmare Before Christmas. It’s one of my favorite children’s Halloween movies and we probably will never do an episode for it. So, I love it so much.
Emma: It’s high vibes, but it’s a little slow.
Elsie: It’s slow, but the songs are incredible. And that’s kind of like what it’s all about. So, I love them.
Emma: Yeah, and I mean the animation. It’s like actual clay, isn’t it? Anyway, we’re not doing that movie right now, so I’m gonna stop before I’m like, let’s talk about that for 15 minutes. Okay, moving on. Yeah. Okay, next trivia. The story for Hocus Pocus came about after writer David Kirschner invented a bedtime story for his kids. He later wrote the story up and submitted it to The Muppet Magazine where it gained recognition. Love it so much. Love it so much. Couldn’t love it more.
Elsie: That’s adorable. A sequel book released in 2018 revealed Jay and Ernie’s Fates. Mm-hmm. So first of all, like, was there a book in the first place? I’m confused. It was a story, then they did a book.
Emma: Well, it says that he wrote it up. Okay. So maybe, I don’t really know. Yeah, that’s a good question.
Elsie: They were eventually rescued and one boy went on to become the principal of the local high school. Hmm. The other became a park ranger so that he could search and rescue ops with the goal of helping lost entrapped people. I think that’s really sweet.
Emma: Yeah, it’s like they gave them a little arc, too, because they’re the bullies. And you’re like, oh no, they’re not gonna do so great in life because they’re just these mean guys who pick on little kids and steal tennis shoes. But look what they did! They went on to learn a lesson, I suppose, or something.
Elsie: People can change.
Emma: Yeah, you do feel bad that they get stuck in the witch’s house. You assume someone finds them, but yeah, it’s kind of mean that they leave them. It’s like, hey man, I know he stole your shoes, but you shouldn’t just leave someone abandoned in a witch’s house. That’s not cool. Okay, did you know, Elsie, that Hocus Pocus was the first Disney film to use the word virgin? All the things in this movie, to me, that’s like the least edgy.
Elsie: I thought it was a very cute part of the movie. And they do say the word virgin so many times. So, good for them. It’s like if you’re going to use a word that’s never been used before, use it like forty times instead of two.
Emma: And they do use it like the correct way It’s not that they dive into sex all that much in this movie It is a kid’s movie, but yeah And I also feel like Max doesn’t really act super embarrassed that he’s a virgin like he very much was like, yeah And a virgin lit the candle if anything he’s like, I’m sorry. I lit the candle. He’s not like I’m sorry for being a virgin I think that’s also good, sometimes 90s movies just do weird things with sex, and so I feel like they treat it like it’s good, like it’s like this normal thing and you kind of learn the real definition of it and it’s not like a big deal for a kid to be a virgin, it’s normal and good, you know. I’m like, that’s good, that seems normal. Yeah. Seems the right move here. This has to do with your devil’s house.
Elsie: Ooh hoo hoo! Gary and Penny Marshall play a disgruntled husband and wife in the movie. Oh, so they’re the devil house husband and wife. But they’re really brother and sister. I love that.
Emma: I know. It’s hilarious. And I’m like, yeah, that’s really funny and fun. It would probably be really fun to work with your sibling, too, on a set. Even if you’re playing husband and wife. Which is weird, but it’s like they’re, like, having, like, a funny little fight. So it’s just funny. And, yeah, they do seem to have great chemistry. So I’m like, oh, that makes sense that they, like, really know each other.
Elsie: I love it. I love that devil house. Okay, so rating the movie from 0 to 5, black flame candles.
Emma: Oh, 5 or 6.
Elsie: Yeah, I mean, 5 for sure. To infinity and beyond.
Emma: Wrong movie, but yes.
Elsie: It’s amazing. Okay, if you haven’t ever watched Hocus Pocus, it’s on Disney Plus I’m sure everyone in the world has that.
Emma: It’s probably on YouTube, too.
Elsie: It’s probably wherever else. Just watch it. Just open your heart. And if you’re like a super snob like my husband, then, you know.
Emma: You’re probably not listening to this podcast.
Elsie: Then just watch it with a kid. Yeah, watch it with a kid. No, it is fun because it’s magical.
Emma: All right, so now we’re going to have a joke or a fact or maybe a meditation with Nova.
Elsie: All right, we’re back with Nova. Nova, what do you have prepared for us this week?
Nova: I have a meditation.
Elsie: What kind of meditation?
Nova: A spooky meditation since it’s getting close to Halloween.
Elsie: Perfect, okay.
Nova: So close your eyes and pretend you’re trick or treating on Halloween. And then pretend you come to a spooky house. Like a spooky castle. Then you walk in, and you find nobody who’s alive is in there. But you find a friendly, very cute ghost, who will be your tour guide. You go through and see a pumpkin. He says hello, and how are you doing? Then, you go through and see a witch. She makes some food for you. Because you know how witches make potions.
Elsie: Should we eat the food?
Nova: Yes, because she made it good. Okay. You ate it, and it was so delicious. Then, you go and see some bats. They say, how is the food? And you say, it’s good. Then, one of them swoops you up, and then you fly into the air at the moon. And then, come back to your house. And, when you go, you remember. You put another pumpkin just like it. You put a bat up. That represents a bat. You put a moon up. Represents a moon. And you put a decoration of a witch. Now your house just looks like it’s the spooky castle. Right there, so you’ll always remember that. And maybe, if you go trick or treating again in that lane, you can visit them again!
Elsie: Thanks, Nova. She is doing a lot more meditation now.
Emma: I love them. Whenever I’m listening, I wait till I can close my eyes and do her meditations and I love them.
Elsie: Okay. We hope you enjoyed this episode. We love doing comfort rewatches. It’s our favorite type of episode to do. We will be back next week with our Autumn Bucket List episode.