Jacqueline Monahan's Movie Reviews

Hotel Transylvania – 3D | Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Steve Buscemi, Andy Samberg, David Spade | Review

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  4_Chicks_Small Jacqueline Monahan

Jacqueline  Monahan

Las Vegas Round The Clock
Jacqueline Monahan is an educator for the GEAR UP program at UNLV.
She is also an entertainment reporter for Lasvegasroundtheclock.com
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Hotel Transylvania – 3D | Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Steve Buscemi, Andy Samberg, David Spade | Review

Humans aren’t allowed at this hotel, but audiences full of the warm-blooded creatures should feel right at home.  All of the classic monsters are represented. Dracula (Adam Sandler, voice) Frankenstein’s monster (Kevin James) his bride Eunice (Fran Drescher) the Werewolf (Steve Buscemi) Mummy (CeeLo Greene)and the Invisible Man (David Spade) plus quite a few original creations, all fling themselves at the viewer in vivid 3D.

Dracula is a widower and single dad, devoted to his daughter Mavis (Selena Gomez) to the point of extreme over-protection.  He builds the titular hotel as a fortress for monsters against the treacherous human race.

At 118 years of age, Mavis is ready to strike out on her own and dreams of Hawaii, the place where her parents honeymooned.  Her big birthday bash brings a lost visitor (a human!) in the form of Jonathan (Andy Samberg) a back-packing, globe trotting teen whose heritage Drac desperately tries to hide from the assembled monsters.  As quick as you can say love interest, Mavis and Jonathan coalesce into a couple, surrounded by the travails brought on by mistaken identity, misunderstood mishaps and well-meaning Drac going blood sucking crazy about the whole human/monster mix-up.

Full of sight gags and puns (talking shrunken heads hang from guestroom doorknobs and announce Do Not Disturb and Clean This Room when they’re not offering down-home advice) the story is ultimately about love and acceptance, with bats, body parts, skulls and gelatinous masses thrown in for good measure.

Director Genndy Tartakovsky (TV’s Power Puff Girls, Dexter’s Laboratory) crams his debut feature full of quips and comic action snips that it’s sometimes hard to absorb.  What does get through is clever and charming, mildly gross and attention-wise, an effective kiddie grabber.

Sandler has the largest chunk of total dialogue, carrying the film alternately on his bat wings and the tails of his tux.  Samberg and Gomez keep the pace brisk.  James tones down his King of Queens shtick enough to make Frank a sweet, understated creature, and Spade injects his trademark snark from behind a pair of eyeglasses – the only manifestation of the Invisible Man.

Expect some toilet humor and predictability; you can also expect a pleasant visit to this hotel.

Just try not to scare the guests with your popcorn and your scary, dark glasses.