by Michelle McGlynn
Adam Sandler’s latest film sees him project his overused, infantile and asinine humour on to animated monsters. The resulting film does not even reach mediocrity. It is a mere step above his most recent, deplorable releases.
In Hotel Transylvania we learn that the monsters of the world are more scared of us than we humans are of them. Dracula (Adam Sandler) seems to have played a large part in how the other monsters feel about mankind as he tells of the evils of the human world. Dracula’s fear of the humans is understandable as his wife was killed by an angry mob. Following this tragedy, Dracula swore he would always keep their young daughter safe. The Count builds a hotel which functions as a safe haven for all monster-kind. All is well until his daughter, Mavis (Selena Gomez), begins to rebel against his strict and overprotective ways. Mavis is about to become an adult at the young age of 118 and all of the monster world arrives at the hotel to celebrate the occasion. Unfortunately, an unwelcome guest also arrives for the party. Jonathan (Andy Samberg) is a young human boy who stumbles into the hotel completely unaware that it is a haven for monsters. Inevitably, Jonathan and Mavis meet and there is an instant spark between the two. Dracula must try to quell this budding romance while also keeping Jonathan’s human identity a secret from the other guests. Will he succeed or will Jonathan succeed in convincing the Count that humans are not all monster murderers?
Hotel Transylvania is pretty light on plot and originality. The film functions as a Twilight rehash but told from the opposite perspective. The quality of this film also reaches about the same standards as the Twilight films. Further to the recycled storyline, Sandler rolls out the same jokes he has for over a decade. The humour is very much focused on bodily functions and other similarly puerile things. This may placate the younger members of the audience but for anyone with a modicum of intelligence there is but a handful of chuckles to break the hour and a half.
Sandler rounds up his gaggle of usual suspects on this one. Andy Samberg, it would appear, did not learn his lesson after the dismal That’s My Boy. Samberg returns to sully the reputation he has built for himself in the comedy world to play an exaggerated bonehead type but who actually serves to teach those around him about love.
Selena Gomez has perfected the whining tone of an unhappy teenage girl. Mavis adds some brightness to the cast but Gomez herself is easily interchangeable with Miley Cyrus or any number of the teen celebrities du jour.
Steve Buscemi, Kevin James, CeeLo Green and Jon Lovitz round out the rest of the monster clan as Wolfman, Frankenstein, the mummy and Quasimodo respectively. David Spade, who for some reason appears to be indispensable in Sandler’s eyes, plays the Invisible Man. As always however, Spade would be infinitely more enjoyable as the Silent Man.
For anyone over the age of six, I would say not to waste your time or money seeing this film. It is as tired as it is moronic. If you are looking for a fun film to bring the children to in the lead-up to Halloween then I would suggest Paranorman as a preferable alternative. For the third time this year Sandler underwhelms and fails to reach the dizzying heights of mediocrity.