13 Movies To Watch If You Love 'Hocus Pocus'
It's become endlessly clear in the 23 years since Hocus Pocus was released that it's one of the most beloved and enduring Halloween movies of all time. This is because it is perfect. Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy, and Sarah Jessica Parker play some of the most iconic witches in film history. A young Thora Birch could not be more adorable and scene-stealing. Then there is the elegant fusion of spooky ancient history and contemporary fun. Max and Allison get a great, super-'90s teen love story with super-'90s hair. And it's all tied together by Binx, the best and most lovable talking cat this side of Sabrina the Teenage Witch. The best part of the year is when you can flip on the Disney Channel and know that the wild grins of the Sanderson Sisters are likely to be looking back at you.
And while Hocus Pocus will no doubt live on for as long as Binx's spirit was trapped in that cat, if you've watched it so much you know all the lines (psst: yabbos), you'll probably want to know what other great quirky Halloween movies are out there. I've got you covered. Below are 13 movies to watch if you love Hocus Pocus and want more witchcraft, magic, sparky heroines, or serious adult actors who have let their hair down and are just having a grand time. (Just don't tell the lovely Sanderson Sisters.)
1. Under Wraps
Like Hocus Pocus, this is a Disney classic with a haunted adventure — and also a friendly, bumbling mummy zombie named Harold. Hijinks abound.
Ah, they heyday of the Olsen twins. This movie has the same fun, childlike spirit of Hocus Pocus and, lest you forget, also stars Cloris Leachman as the twins' evil aunt. It's a campy, family-friendly blast from the past.
3. The Witches
This move is like Hocus Pocus' edgy, creative older sister who's really glamorous but also pretty scary. Anjelica Huston is ~goals~ forever, and The Witches is surprisingly terrifying and super committed to its off-the-wall tone.
If your favorite part of Hocus Pocus is the love story between Max and Allison, Practical Magic is the movie for you. Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman are delightful as witches in this Halloween rom-com.
Mara Wilson is known for having been the sweet, smart, and magical lead in Matilda, but she also starred in the lesser-known A Simple Wish , with Kathleen Turner as her fairy godmother and Martin Short as "any Martin Short character." It's a zany and unexpected magical fantasy.
The Sanderson Sisters of Hocus Pocus are one of the most cool and fun spooky families out there, but they're in a close competition with the charmingly morbid Addams family.
Sister witches forever. The Sanderson Sisters ruled Salem, but the Mowry sisters as twin witches Artemis and Apolla DuBaer are icons for a new and magical generation of cool young girls.
Hocus Pocus is chock full of spunky female leads from young to old, and Beetlejuice 's paranormally curious Lydia — played by a sparkling Winona Ryder — would get along great with them.
Another mark in the "great female leads" category. (Most of these movie are, actually.) Casper has the same adventurous and spooky but ultimately warm-hearted tone as Hocus Pocus, and stars a post-Addams Family Christina Ricci.
10. The Worst Witch
This movie stars a young Fairuza Balk as a blossoming witch struggling to succeed at a witch academy. It also has Tim Curry. What more recommendation do you need?
This one may seem odd, but it's actually remarkably similar — if more adult. Lead Hocus Pocus witch Bette Midler stars in a trio of loyal women once again, only this time their enemy is the trio of ex-husbands that wronged them, and they're getting even. Midler's Hocus Pocus sister Sarah Jessica Parker even shows up in a small role. Sanderson sisters forever.
12. Teen Witch
All the awesome witchcraft you love, with that delightful '80s teen movie charm — and hair.
Obviously. This Disney classic is as beloved as Hocus Pocus and spawned several sequels so that fans could learn more about the Halloweentown universe. My personal favorite is Halloweentown High, but the original is a Hocus Pocus-level gem.
All of these movies capture some part of the unique Hocus Pocus charm, and will keep you in a delightfully witchy and adventurous mood.
Images: Disney Channel (3); Warner Bros. (4); Buena Vista Pictures; Universal Pictures (2); Paramount Pictures (2); Central Independent Television; MGM