'Hotel Transylvania 3...': A spirited middlebrow entertainer (IANS Review, Rating: ***)
Film: "Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation"; Director: Genndy Tartakovsky; Voice Cast: Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, Andy Samberg, Kevin James, David Spade, Steve Buscemi, Fran Drescher, Keegan-Michael Key, Molly Shannon, Fran Drescher, Kathryn Hahn, Jim Gaffigan, Mel Brooks; Rating: *** (3 star)
Despite its flimsy premise about true love and "we are all the same", "Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation" is a shade better than its previous edition.
The narrative of this film takes place a few months after the previous edition. It treats us to an exciting, fun-filled monster vacation on board a cruise liner heading to the mysterious Bermuda Triangle and the City of Atlantis.
This surprise destination getaway is planned by Mavis, Dracula's daughter so that her father would have a break from his routine and bond with Dennis, his grandson, and Jonathan, his son-in-law.
While on the cruise, Dracula (Drac) "zings" (his terminology for falling in love) for Ericka, the human captain of the ship who unbeknownst to him happens to be the great-granddaughter of Professor Abraham Van Helsing a Monster-hunter.
What keeps the film moving at a rapid pace are the good humour jokes and gags on familiar monster lore. The script takes advantage of the current social conversations such as discrimination and prejudice to tell a story in which monsters are better than humans beings and even have the same dilemmas as any person.
But the problem is that the previous editions and other animated films have already dealt with the same subject and thus there seems to be a load of repetitive stuff. But what really stands out here is the physical humour and some sympathetic situations that have to do with Drac's personal life after being widowed for over a century.
The film is action-packed right from the onset. It shows us how in 1897, Drac outwitted Helsing while travelling in a train to Budapest with his monster friends, disguised as humans. And later, monsters' journey on the rickety plane and their conflict with the now aged Professor in the city of Atlantis, is deliberately thrilling.
The animation like usual, is of fine quality and to add credence to the visuals, Director Genndy Tartakovsky has stuck to his ace cast who match the visuals with their stellar voices. Among the new lot, it is Kathryn Hahn as Ericka Van Helsing, Jim Gaffigan as Professor Abraham Van Helsing and Asher Blinkoff as Dennis who mesmerise you with their charming tones.
Overall, "Hotel Transylvania: Summer Vacation" is a spirited, middlebrow entertainer that would appeal to the kids and all those who have an appetite for the vampire tales.