Film: Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
Cast: (Voices) Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, Mel Brooks, Kathryn Hahn, Kevin Spade, Steve Buscemi, David Spade, Jim Gaffigan, Andy Samberg, Asher Blinkoff
Director: Gennady Tartakovsky
Rating: * * *
Set for the most part on board a luxury cruise liner, the third instalment animated franchise titled, Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation is a fun watch. However, certain scenes imperilling some of the characters may be too distressing for little children. All things considered though, director and co-writer (with Michael McCullers) Gennady Tartakovsky’s cartoon uses plot and character to good effect.
A few new characters are added to the original lot from the titular establishment consisting of the widowed Dracula (voiced by Adam Sandler), his only daughter, Mavis (voiced by Selena Gomez), his son-in-law Johnny (Andu Samberg) their little baby, Dennis (Asher Blinkoff) and various other monsters notably Frank (Enstein) (Kevin James), invisible man Griffin (David Spade) Murray, the mummy and werewolf Wayne (Steve Buscemi) his wife and brood including daughter Winnie who has a thing for Dennis.
Mavis manages to persuade her workaholic father to go on a cruise to Atlantis aboard a luxury liner, where he is “zinged” (smitten) by the ship’s captain, Erika (Kathryn Hahn) Van Helsing. The protective and possessive Mavis gets jealous even as Drac also fails to realize that Erika has a secret mission drawn up by her monster-hunting grandfather Abraham Van Helsing (Jim Gaffigan).
As in the first two films of this horror toon franchise, this one also underlines the importance of love and family, tolerance and diversity as Erika vacillate between attempts to kill Dracula and increasing affection for him. Specifically, she has to eradicate her feelings of prejudice.
I thought you could get zinged only once, but here is Dracula getting zinged post an extended widower-hood. As he tells someone, “I haven’t been on a date since my wife died. It is hard being a single dad.”
The film also suggests that two people who have very little in common can still get zinged (fall instantly in love) Before that happens, The luxe liner goes down the Bermuda Triangle to an undersea mountain of ships wreckage where monsters erupt in Indiana Jones style, in due course, a hilarious musical bout ensues between Abraham Van Helsing’s bad music and Johnny’s good music. Unsurprisingly, hard rock is bad while folk music and the “Macarena” are good.