By Adam Staten
If one were to put a theme on this summer’s box office, it would be “sequels and superhero/action films”. Odds are pretty good that if you’re venturing out to the theater, you’re seeing either one or the other. Honestly, why not? Sequels and superhero films help lessen the uncertainty on our part, helping to ensure we aren’t just throwing our money away on something we won’t enjoy. We have a fairly good idea of what we’re getting into with The Incredibles 2 and Deadpool 2. This past weekend saw the release of what else? A sequel.
Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, the third of the animated films featuring some of most notorious and infamous creepy creatures, brings back the entire gang. This time, Mavis (voiced by Selena Gomez), feels her and father, Dracula (voiced by Adam Sandler) are beginning to drift apart and thinks a vacation could be just the thing to strengthen their relationship. However, little does Mavis know, Dracula is feeling a tad lonely and begins browsing Tinder, which ends with disastrous results.
Taking care of all the arrangements, Mavis books a cruise for the entire gang. They soon set sail hoping for a trip filled with rest, relaxation and spending time with one another. As you can expect, their nice little vacation is anything but the restful, uneventful time. Instead, Dracula falls head over of cape for the ship’s cruise director. But here’s the big twist: she’s the great-granddaughter of Van Helsing, the famous vampire hunter. She’s hoping to carry on his legacy and Dracula, too blinded by love at first bite, can’t see her obvious devious plan. His total obliviousness to what the object of his infatuation is doing puts his and that of his friends and family in jeopardy.
If you’ve seen any of the two previous Hotel Transylvania films, you have a pretty good idea of what to expect with this one. And to be honest, that’s exactly what you get. The film’s terribly lazy writing ruins what is otherwise a somewhat clever and funny premise. The jokes are predictable, juvenile and are basically a PG-version of what you’re likely to see in an average Sandler comedy. Some are mildly amusing, but most are likely to sail over the head of its intended audience.
The film has an absolutely all-star cast, but fails to use utilize their talents. Instead, Sandler and Gomez shine brightest while everyone else is relegated to small, bit parts.
Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation is a big swing and a miss. It’s poorly written, unnecessary and unfunny. 2 out of 5.