Another month, another animated movie directed strictly for infants and young adolescence. Although, in this case, it may not be that simple. Genndy Tarkovsky, who is the mastermind behind the entire “Transylvania Trilogy”, is somewhat of a genius and an icon in the industry of televised animation; he’s behind some of the most successful children shows on television. He transitioned to crafting a feature-length film with a buttery-smooth ease that we very rarely discover in today’s age of media. For his third, and perhaps final, entry in this animated series, Tarkovsky sticks with emphasizing on the strongest elements previously established and then some. The final result is a thoroughly entertaining ninety-seven minutes for all age demographics.
Though the film is not anything revolutionary and is, in hindsight, not entirely worth the full price admission, there is still a hidden beauty behind all the vampire fart gags and over-the-top slapstick. Sandler’s energy is as aberrant as ever and pairs nicely with the lively animation that creates fair amounts of eye-candy. There’s a certain sense of creativity, with the visuals and vocal performances, woven into the animation that was too sporadic to be effective in the previous entry. This time around, it is not only controlled for maximum benefit but also used effectively for gags that seem heartfelt regarding the circumstances. Those circumstances regard topics that may feel a tad bit too heavy for a kids film. We follow the Transylvania crew on a luxury cruise vacation due to Mavis’ (Selena Gomez) concern for her father’s lonely and isolated ways. This creates an easily relatable sense of emotion for our lead protagonists that I found myself grossly involved in for a great amount of the runtime. These very sensitive topics are thankfully portrayed with taste and provide healthy solutions for its impressionable audience. Not to mention being subtle enough for the early youth to pick up on the morals but not the grand scheme.
Sandler, Sanberg, and Gomez shine in the limelight, while the rest of the inventive and intriguing crew are still left as side-missions. We view the events of our side characters as less of a way of progressing the narrative and in more of an attempt to create filler so the runtime can be feature length. Our very brief look into the lives of these sides-characters involves a running gag between the werewolf couple, Wanda and Wayne (Molly Shannon and Steve Buscemi). This gag becomes exceptionally humorous as we follow their adventures of re-discovering the pleasantries of life without their children constantly on hand. I secretly wish that Tarkovsky and McCullers had put more effort into giving these endlessly interesting creatures and ghouls more purpose in the overall story.
There really isn’t all too much to say about HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 3; it’s a fun and refreshing addition to an endless list of animated movies geared specifically towards children. There is a fair amount of irreverent jokes that lay in hidden under blankets in the script but can lead to some hearty chuckles in the cinema. If you’re a fan of this franchise, then this is definitely one that you need to soon as soon as possible because it will be a religious experience. Although, if you are just looking for a good time at the movies, this may be one you are better off checking out on discount night.
Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation is currently in a nationwide release across Canada!