Wednesday, 17 October 2012
Hotel Transylvania - Film Review
Okay, so I have to say I wasn’t expecting much from this one. Even though I quite like Adam Sandler, it’s easy to become tired of his shtick, and the thought of him hamming it up as Dracula wasn’t an enticing one. Then again, Sony Pictures animation division has turned out some marvellously quirky gems in the past, such as “Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs” and “Arthur Christmas”, although one mustn’t forget (or forgive) “The Smurfs” and the inevitable upcoming sequel.
The first thing to note is that Sandler is almost unrecognisable as Dracula, giving a standard “I vant to bite you, bwah ha ha haaa” performance that is just what is needed, although he handles the more tender moments with aplomb when needed. The rest of the cast is filled out with the likes of Steve Buscemi, Jon Lovitz and Sandler regularsAndy Samberg (Sandlers recent co star from “That’s My Boy” and the should-have-been-a-hit “Hot Rod”), David Spade and Kevin James. It’s arre to find any serious miscasting in animated featires these days, and Hotel Transylvania is no exception, as it’s all about what’s on screen rather than who you can spot doing a voice.
So what IS on screen? For a start, shitloads of sight gags and references to old monster movies that will delight older fans. The script, by the people who brought you Arthur Christmas (and Borat) is sharp as one of Dracula’s fangs, and I genuinely found myself laughing out load several times, and once had to even wipe away a tear (you’ll know the bit when you see it). It’s one of those gems of animation that has as much for adults as it does for kids, and as such truly merit’s the label of Family Film.
If you want the plot, then Dracula has built his Hotel Transylvania so that monsters (who are a lovely bunch really) can come for a break away from all the nasty humans, and no human has ever set foot there until naïve backpacker Johnny blunders in. It just happens to be Drac’s beloved daughter’s 118th birthday party, and when the two ids hit it off he has to try and persuade everyone that Johnny is not a human (he has to protect the hotel’s human-free rep) but a cousin of Franenstein (well, his arm, anyway). That’s all you really need to know, except for the fact that this is one of the funniest CGI toons I’ve seen, and after the relative disappointment of Madagascar 3 it will stick the smile right back on the faced of you and any kids you can drag along.