Hotel Transylvania movie review: Overprotective bloodsucker

This ghoulish getaway for monsters is the perfect movie to kick off the Halloween season. Adam Sandler voices Drac, a single-dad vampire who will do anything to protect his daughter from monstrous humans, but learns a surprising lesson along the way.

Hotel Transylvania

3 out of 5 stars: Perfect for Halloween-lovers of all ages

Welcome to the Hotel Transylvania, a resort built by Dracula (Adam Sandler) for ghouls and goblins of all sorts to get away from pesky humans. This weekend is special, however, when friendly mummies, werewolves and the Frankenstein family gather to celebrate Drac’s daughter Mavis’ (Selena Gomez) 118th birthday. A big party is planned, and an uninvited guest shows up.

After backpacking through Europe and staying in hostels, a stinky American human named Jonathan (Andy Samberg), arrives and wants to get in on the fun. But Drac has had some bad experiences with humans and does his best to shuffle the 21-year-old traveler out of the party.

Hotel Transylvania monsters

Mavis, however, has different plans. When she meets this curious, ginger-haired young man, her heart races as the two “zing” for each other, causing Drac to panic. He’s determined to keep his little girl from falling for a human.

The filmmakers create lots of fun visuals and kooky characters like the shrunken heads that hang on the hotel room doors and the werewolf family that has an abundance of flea-riddled pups.

CeeLo Green voices Murray the Mummy, Kevin James plays Frank (as in Frankenstein) and Steve Buscemi growls the dialogue as the overburdened werewolf-dad Wayne. Selena Gomez’s sweet yet rebellious tone works perfectly for Mavis, the adorable fanged vamp.

Hotel Transylvania Castle

Never too scary, the vampires drink synthetic blood and are more worried about the humans attacking them than vice versa. At its heart, this is a father-daughter love story, where an overprotective dad realizes he must let his daughter spread her bat wings and fly.

Bottom line: In glorious 3D, this is a fun family flick that mines comedy and heart out of the traditional monster-mash of characters. Despite removing his child-sized 3D glasses halfway through the movie because they were bothering him, my six-year-old companion thoroughly enjoyed Hotel Transylvania.

Photo credit: Sony