Reviews, Sony Pictures Animation, Studios

[REVIEW] ‘Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation’

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I bet in 2012 when the first Hotel Transylvania was released nobody could have predicted it would be the start of a franchise debuting its 3rd movie in 2018. The production of the original film was rocky to say the least. They went through 6 directors before finally landing on Genndy Tartakovsky to helm the film as his first feature to direct. Genndy reimagined the story as a hyper-amplified type of manic animation. He said ” I don’t want animation to mimic reality. I want to push reality.”

Now with these sequels he has enjoyed full control over the projects ,and while I have some issues with what he did in Hotel Transylvania 2, it was successful at the box office and most fans seemed to enjoy it. Now we get Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation and it just might be the strongest of the franchise to date. It’s not a film that will be discussed come Oscar season but it is still enjoyable. It’s funny, has a sweet message and the animation really sparkles.

The plot of Hotel Transylvania 3 is pretty simple. Dracula (Adam Sandler) is feeling lonely and wishes he could have a date. The problem is monsters are only known to “zing” or fall in love with one person in their lives. Drac has already loved Mavis’ Mother so a new love is impossible. Mavis see’s her Dad is unhappy and decides to take the whole group from the hotel on a special monsters cruise she see’s advertised.

While on the cruise all kinds of shenanigans happen but the main message of the franchise remains strong- love those who are different and don’t be afraid of those differences. It’s our differences that make us special and make the world great.  This is a very timely and sweet message to share.

Hotel Transylvania 3 is also pretty funny. I particularly loved a big gag with music towards the end that totally paid off but there were also lots of little jokes that worked. However, it isn’t very different from the humor in the rest of the franchise so if you didn’t laugh at them you aren’t likely to laugh at this.

That said, I preferred this over Hotel Transylvania 2 because I felt that film didn’t use its ensemble cast very well. Characters like Eunice (Fran Drescher) hardly got any lines at all in the 2nd film and luckily here for the 3rd she gets much more to do, as do all the characters.

I also thought much of the animation was striking. It had that hybrid 2D/3D feel, which I love. I especially loved a long scene where they go scuba diving and any time you saw the ship sparkling in the distance.

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation is not a film that reinvents the wheel but it is enjoyable, funny and will be a nice break from this blistering heat most of us are having.The entire family will have a good time and the kiddos will learn an important lesson. It’s definitely worth a watch.


What do you think of the Hotel Transylvania franchise? Let us know in the comments section if you get to see this film and what you think

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About Rachel Wagner

Rachel is a rottentomatoes approved film critic and podcaster. She loves all things animation and does a monthly podcast on classic Disney films and on obscure animation at Rachel's Reviews. She also is the founder and lead host of The Hallmarkies Podcast. She grew up with mainstream classics like The Little Mermaid and The Simpsons but also loves indie and anime fare like Song of the Sea and Your Name. Most important to her is discussing all kinds of film and TV shows with her friends and all of you. Follow Rachel on twitter at @rachel_reviews and on her blog