Hotel Transylvania

25 Oct

After the death of his wife, Dracula (voiced by Adam Sandler) creates a lavish hotel to protect his daughter Mavis (voiced by Selena Gomez) and other monsters from the pitchfork wielding humans and their hatred. Fast forward a century to Mavis’s 118th birthday, a human by the name of Jonathan (voiced by Andy Samberg) stumbles upon the hotel. All hell breaks loose in Dracula’s head as he tries to protect his hotel’s image while being a protective control freak of a father.

With a bucket full of monsters, the writers (Todd Durham, Dan Hageman & Kevin Hageman) could have gone horribly wrong or created a string of brilliance. Instead they wrapped the story around Dracula and his daughter while throwing in a string of cliché plots and a bit of a love story. The rest of the cast takes a backseat only stepping into the limelight for short funny moments that only peaks in the climax. Also, the whole monster-scared-of-humans concept was reminiscent of Monsters Inc. sans the cute factor.

Dracula and Mavis

The animation is wonderfully detailed and well put together for each character. The film lacks sweeping jaw dropping scenic material since most of the film plays out inside the castle; Sony Pictures has clearly taken a huge stride in the right direction with their animation. The action was fast paced and entertaining while emotions never got overwhelming to spoil the fun. Screenplay by Peter Baynham and Robert Smigel didn’t exceed expectations but was amusing enough to keep us in our seats. The kids in the theatre, on the other hand, were having a laughter riot. The background score was unremarkable while the songs were well placed apart from the one at the end, which was completely unnecessary.

Quasimodo with Jonathan and Dracula

Adam Sandler as the voice for Dracula without his usual over the top antics was just right. Selena Gomez as *seen it before* Mavis didn’t stand out while Andy Samberg as goofy Jonathan lacked variety but stilled managed to be funny. Kevin James as Frankenstein didn’t have much to do and felt wasted. Steve Buscemi as stressed werewolf Wayne was brilliant as you’ve come to expect from him. David Spade as Invisible Man Griffin, Ceelo Green as mummy Murray, Jon Lovitz as Quasimodo, Luenell as Shrunken Heads and Fran Drescher as Eunice had their moments but they were few, and far between. A lot of talent there but not really utilised properly.

The Monsters…

With a house full of monsters, the potential to create magic was there. Unfortunately the director Genndy Tartakovsky decided to play it safe with a humdrum story that we’ve already seen before (Brave comes to mind). Irrespective of all that, this film targets kids and they were clearly enjoying it. With a long weekend ahead, Hotel Transylvania is the perfect film to satisfy the appetite of the little ones. Meanwhile for the adults, it’s a so-so affair that leaves you with a smile but fails to mesmerize you.

6/10

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