Movie review: Hotel Transylvania
From: National Features
September 19, 20126:00PM
Dracula (Adam Sandler) and Johnnystein (Andy Samberg) in Hotel Transylvania. Picture: Supplied National Features
THERE’S a wow factor to this fresh and vibrant animated comedy that just does not let up.
It all starts with a madcap premise that turns a traditional gothic horror staple on its head: the notorious vampire Count Dracula (voiced by Adam Sandler) now runs a luxury resort for ghouls, ghosts and gremlins.
That’s right. Drac is now the popular face of five-blah accommodation. While he still has to observe all the annoying rules that affect his species – avoiding direct sunlight, garlic and so on – the Count is very much his own man these days.
After all, he has a teenage daughter to care for. And you know what 118-year-old girls are like. Young Mavis (Selena Gomez) is a bit of rebel. She wants to see the outside world. Life among the coolest and most colourful of the undead inside the Hotel Transylvania just doesn’t cut it any more.
Nevertheless, business is booming as the film begins, with the likes of Frankenstein, The Invisible Man and a who’s who of spookery all checking in for the holidays. (The opening sequence which chronicles the arrivals of this bizarre bunch stands as some of the best creative cartooning of 2012.)
Just as everyone has settled in, a crisis looms. Against his better judgment, Dracula is forced to permit the establishment to play host to its first human guest, an all-too-typical American backpacker named Jonathan (Andy Samberg).
He is only 21, but the age difference is not about to put off an all-too interested Mavis.
Bursting with great ideas, mild scares and plenty of laughs, Hotel Transylvania is A-class family entertainment that, somewhat surprisingly, gives the new Madagascar a serious run for its money.
I would not go as far as to declare it should be the first choice for very small children, but anyone over six will have a ball.
– Hotel Transylvania [PG]
– Three and a half stars
– Director: Genndy Tartakovsky (feature debut)
– Starring: the voices of Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Steve Buscemi