Hotel Transylvania: Transformania

With or without Adam Sandler, this franchise conclusion still isn’t for the adults.

It makes sense that “Hotel Transylvania: Transformania” gets pushed to Amazon Prime, instead of a movie theater, because it’s too noisy and generic for an adult to accompany their kids to. Using the terms “animated sequel,” “Sing 2” has been given an edge that BOTH adults and kids can relate to, especially since it added a U2 inspiration. “Hotel Transylvania: Transformania,” which is the final entry in this popular Sony Picture Animation franchise, is more for kids than adults.

Adam Sandler and Kevin James didn’t reprise their voice roles as Dracula and Frankenstein, and so YouTuber Brian Hull (who is a year older than me) is now Dracula, while voice actor Brad Abrell makes Frank sound like a direct-to-video character. I don’t think it would make much of a difference if Sandler and James reprised their roles, considering that the human Drac has to deal with mosquitoes, piranhas, and sweat, while the human Frank becomes narcissistic and constantly takes selfies.

I’m getting ahead of myself, because Drac’s human son-in-law Johnny (voiced once more by Andy Samberg) uses Van Helsing’s (voiced by Jim Gaffigan) ray, which turns humans into monsters, and monsters into humans. The reason he does that is because Dracula is planning to retire and pass on the hotel to his daughter Mavis (voiced by Selena Gomez) and Johnny, but the old vampire still thinks Johnny would taint the place, and lies about a contract saying that a human inheriting the hotel would be illegal. That’s when Johnny gets the monstrous idea, and that’s when Drac and his monster friends become humans.

Frank is the narcissist, as I just mentioned, Murray the Mummy (voiced by Keegan-Michael Key) is now an old man (ancient to be exact), Wayne the Werewolf (voiced by Steve Buscemi) loses most of his fur, Griffin the Invisible Man (voiced by David Spade) wasn’t kidding when he said he had red hair in the original film, and the gelatinous Blobby is just a green bowl of jello.

Their only hope is to travel to South America to find the crystal that could change everyone back to normal. Drac and Johnny have the spend the “father-son-in-law” bonding, while Mavis and Drac’s wife Ericka (voiced by Kathryn Hahn) are both left untouched by the ray.

“Hotel Transylvania: Transformania” only works when Gomez adds a nice touch to Mavis, who has blossomed into a smart young woman, and she’s still cute as a bat with blue eyes. And the end credits, now directed by Jennifer Kluska and Derek Drymon, are more delightful than the other credits. But aside from those things, I’m glad this franchise is over. I liked the first movie for its timing and voice work, I didn’t care for the second one for its generic animation and lame last minute subplot, and I skipped the third one, because I would take my chances elsewhere. And this last outing isn’t that bad; it’s just unnecessary.

It’s taken three more movies for Drac to realize Johnny is now family, after he learned to appreciate him in the first movie? I have a similar reaction with Squidward still being annoyed by SpongeBob in Nickelodeon’s longest running series (and I’ve missed most of the new ones), and Scrat still trying to bury his acorn, when he could just eat it and move on with his life in the “Ice Age” franchise. It’s just too exhausting for me to comprehend.

Rating: 2 out of 4.

Streaming on Amazon Prime This Friday

Categories: Adventure, Animation, comedy, Family, Sequel

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