There are some movie franchises that deliver something great with every installment, and there are those that lose some steam with each entry. Unfortunately, such is the case with the Hotel Transylvania saga. While I thoroughly enjoyed the first two movies, I can honestly say, at this point in my movie-watching experience, that the third chapter is not all that memorable. And such will probably be the case with the new sequel. Even though it does have some enjoyable moments, this new Hotel Transylvania movie ultimately left me rather flat.
The story of this chapter involves the eventual retirement of Count Dracula (Brian Hull), as owner and proprietor of the Hotel Transylvania. During an anniversary celebration of the hotel, Drac comes to the realization that, once he retires, he will no longer have any say about the future of his establishment after he hands over the reigns to his his daughter Mavis (Selena Gomez) and son-in-law Johnny (Andy Samberg). This thought very much frightens him, and in this particular state of mind, he desperately lies to Johnny, telling him that there is a law where he could not take possession of the hotel as long as he is a “normal” human.
What follows is an occasionally amusing, but mostly hackneyed execution of misadventures involving Johnny’s transformation into a monster and the transformation of the hotel’s lead monsters into humans. What fails this movie the most is the humor. I did enjoy some of the scenarios of the film, but often found myself bored or disinterested in what is happening. Which is a damn shame, given that I have enjoyed these characters and their antics in the previous movies.
I feel like this franchise is definitely showing the strains of the studio attempting to stretch out and milk what they can out of what has been accomplished previously. And since the preceding entry in the franchise is fine, but not that memorable, they can only stretch this concept so far if they don’t have any fresh or exceptional ideas.
The voice cast of the movie is totally fine. They all do their best, but, at the same time, it feels like even they know that this is yet another crash grab for the studio. Perhaps, that is why Adam Sandler decided to sit this one out. I had no major issues with the vocal performance of Brian Hull, who takes over the role of Drac, but I could certainly detect a lack of excitement and passion for the role that Sandler normally brings to the character.
And that zeal and creative zest is what is missing from Hotel Transylvania: Transformania. Unfortunately, this movie comes across as yet another sequel forced by the studio with not much regard for its dedicated fan base and offers so little to earn some new followers.