Hotel Transylvania (2012)

Movie

hotel transylvaniaAfter waking up this morning I discovered something unusual for me, I didn’t know what to write today! Simply no ideas what so ever and I was pretty much against reviewing Amour because I don’t need the sadness at the moment. This unexciting story ends with the fact that I had totally blanked out on the memory of me watching Hotel Transylvania last week and if I hadn’t written it down in my soon to be replaced notebook, I would have missed the chance to be a little critical following the extremely great movies I have been seeing lately. Not that I love being critical, it’s just, a different kind of thing to write and to create a view.. ah, who cares, I love being critical!

Just like Brave, I had not seen the trailer of Hotel Transylvania and that I’m guessing helped the animation a lot – there were couple of surprises along the way but not as amazing as those in Brave. Indeed, Brave was the best animation I saw last year because it was the only one I saw, therefore I’m most likely comparing all the rest to its story building and quality. Regarding that, Hotel Transylvania fell behind in many departments and never really used its full potential of all those amazing monsters.

The story follows count Dracula (Adam Sandler) and his daughter Mavis (Selena Gomez), so yes, it’s another parental guidance story, where he is set out to protect her from all evil that are the humans! The premises is great, the plot revolving around an overprotective father in a monster hotel that he built is reminding me of so many animations all at once. That being said, that does not make it better because instead of loving it for the reminders, I’m expecting a lot from it. So the kind of familiarity in its story is not doing any favors for Hotel Transylvania and the overweight mummy Murray voiced by the soulful Cee Lo Green is not enough to save it.

After Dracula tricks his daughter into thinking that humans are all monsters, Jonathan (Andy Samberg) ends up in a hotel full of monsters! Shock of having a human in the hotel is also a great start but then it kind of stays there and slowly develops towards a predictable end game. The plot never really plays with the fact that monsters are afraid of the human, not the other way around, whichΒ  is a shame to be honest. What made it rather disappointing was the fact that the main point still remained the parent-child relationship but unlike Brave, which avoided the romance stuff, Hotel Transylvania wanted to focus on two relationships. That made it a bit messy and I would have totally liked it more if the Dracula’s daughter and the human had more screen time than Jonathan and Dracula. Seriously, it was mostly Dracula who hang out with the kid instead of the daughter and well, that is just weird and awkward on so many levels.

The greatest compliment for Hotel Transylvania is that it did have a great promise, the fact that it wasn’t able to focus entirely on a certain story was its downfall. With so many aspects and a lot to process, the animation had a lot going on and it certainly needed some simplicity for my taste. To be honest though, I’m assuming this is the best Adam Sandler has been for years, so something good came out of it after all. But, is it only me, or is having Andy Samberg and Selena Gomez hooking up via their voices weird or not? Usually I’m not bothered with the choice of actors behind the characters but knowing Gomez was Mavis kind of bothers me a bit.

All in all, the animation was mediocre and as I said, potential was much more awesome than the story ever allowed it to be Plus, it would be a good idea to continue with couple of the characters, for instance the Mummy and Frankenstein (Kevin James) because when ever those two were on screen, I felt as if they stole the show. Who ever drew those two is amazing, because despite being huge and most likely scary to many kids, they looked lovable and most importantly, memorable.

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  • Reply
    Ben H
    January 18, 2013 at 12:07 PM

    This is probably the most effort Sandler has put into an acting role for 10 years! His Dracula was goofy and stereotypical but I did enjoy him.

    Other than some fun visuals and jokes, you’re right. The story was lacking and I always hate it when a film ends with a dance/song sequence! It’s probably the worst animation I saw of 2012, like a 6/10 in my book.

    • Reply
      mettelray
      January 18, 2013 at 12:11 PM

      He had some moments yes, but I think the singing, well, the Dracula as a rapper was fun but overall, Shrek did the dancing scene in the end and that was/is the only time I enjoyed myself.
      I’m still hoping to see Wreck-It Ralph, pretty sure it will be better than HT.

  • Reply
    CMrok93
    January 18, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    Not an amazing movie, but still pretty good none the less. There is always something happening with the visuals and I think that’s what I appreciated the most here. Good review Ray.

    • Reply
      mettelray
      January 18, 2013 at 2:31 PM

      It’s hard to go totally wrong with animations though, it’s like.. it’s not like, a kid in us always likes animations, no matter what.

  • Reply
    Tim The Film Guy
    January 25, 2013 at 10:49 PM

    I still haven’t seen this but am getting around to it, good review πŸ˜€

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