Why you should avoid Double, Double Toil and Trouble

Double, Double Toil and Trouble tapped into the Olsen Twins’ star power of the early 90s to deliver a truly terrible, made for TV movie. In it, you can see the full range of their “acting ability,” which, simply put, is not expansive.

I blessedly was able to avoid watching Double, Double Toil and Trouble for about 27 years. That streak ended this year, when, desperate for new content to watch, we turned to this “classic.”

We made a mistake. We made a big mistake.

Here are all the reasons why you should avoid Double, Double Toil and Trouble before it is too late.

The Olsen Twins

Anyone growing up in the 90s knows who Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are. They got their start as Michelle on Full House, launched an oddly successful straight to video movie career, multiple lines of merchandise, and have since moved on from acting altogether leaving their younger sister, Elizabeth, to act alone. (If you watch the MCU, you probably will recognize her as the Scarlet Witch.)

Sadly, there is very little reason as to why the Olsen twins dominated the straight to video movie industry of the late 90s and early 2000s. The twins were cute, but their acting was on par with cardboard cutouts. They had the emotional depth of a puddle. And, in most things, they were just plain annoying.

Critics often describe them as “precocious.” I’d describe them as obnoxious. Two sides of the same coin, I guess, in some cases.

Either way, enduring their “acting” for about an hour and half is not what I would describe as pleasant. Nails on a chalk board comes to mind.

The “acting” was like watching boxes move around the screen

OK. To be fair, acting in a made for TV movie rarely shines. They aren’t usually pulling from Hollywood’s A-listers after all.

But those facts don’t make the movie any easier to sit through. But that’s not to say there isn’t a memorable line in there.

When one of the interchangeable twins is captured, the other one robotically states, “They caught her. I don’t want them to hurt her. She’s my sister.” To which the random person, she is lucky wasn’t a serial killer and who is “helping” her, emotionlessly replies, “Now. Now.”

Really? “Now now” is the best thing to say in this situation? The one kid is about to get killed or something and all you can say is now now? What the fuck is wrong with him?

Admittedly, that line is actually funny in its execution. But there are plenty of other lines that are just as stale, non-sensical, or generally inane. By the end, it becomes too much to bear.

Double, Double Toil and Trouble references the occult?

Yeah, I don’t care about that. Unless your child is afraid of a cauldron that contains dish washing soap, you probably really shouldn’t either.

But some disappointed mother did. Apparently, she felt the need to write a product review after purchasing the DVD (which you can find on Amazon and other online stores for some reason) about her disappointment in the movie. Turns out, the references to witches and witchcraft was too much for her delicate sensibilities.

What possessed this person to purchase a movie called Double, Double Toil and Trouble is beyond me because it literally references the witches in Macbeth. Not to mention, the twins are wearing witch costumes on the cover art of the DVD.

How the hell was she upset that a movie about witches contains witches? She must be a new kind of stupid.

The plot was weak, even for a made for TV movie

Double, Double Toil and Trouble starts off with the movie’s pointless subplot. The twin’s parents are poor and going to lose their house on the Monday following Halloween.

So they drive to some unknown part of town to go beg their rich Aunt for a loan. This is where the twins meet the main antagonist, Agatha, who is really a witch who imprisoned her twin sister in a mirror.

The Olsen twins figure out their great aunt is a witch and sneak away from their parents while trick or treating to save their other aunt trapped in the mirror. Along the way, they meet a random hobo, who likely would have sold the kids for a hot meal, and a little person, who they met as a creepy ass clown at a party earlier in the day.

Yeah. I’ll stop right there.

The subplot about the mortgage is completely irrelevant to the “plot” and easily could be written out without affecting the story. As could the parents, and the random helpers these girls had. The whole story lacks any semblance of interest, twists, or any reason for anyone over the age of 5 to watch it.

Of course, the stale dialogue and cardboard cutouts they called actors and actresses really didn’t help draw me into the plot either.


If you are looking for something new or different to watch as a family for Halloween, keep looking. Double, Double Toil and Trouble makes no effort to keep the interest of a parent trapped under their squirming child. But if you are a glutton for torture, then go for it. You can stream it on Hulu or rent it through other providers like Amazon Prime Video.

Also, check out some of these other terrible, family-friendly, and Halloween-inspired movies that no one in their right mind would want to sit through.

Like quizzes?

If you like to take quizzes, possibly while watching crappy Halloween movies, check out this Hocus Pocus quiz. You’ll need to really know the movie well to get them all right.

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Nathan

Nathan is not a published author, professional movie critic, or avid fan of most children shows. He is a caring father (when he's not banging his head against the wall), a movie connoisseur of sorts literally able to have full conversations in movie and TV quotes, and dedicated to helping other parents avoid starting a show with their small children that they will soon regret. In his free time, he does nothing. He has two small children. Free time does not exist.

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