HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA: TRANSFORMANIA – Review by Gadi Elkon

Is the fourth and final installment of Hotel Transylvania worth the time?  Here is Gadi Elkon’s view on the film.

Drac and the Pack are in for their wildest adventure yet when the “Monsterification Ray” transforms Drac and his monster pals into humans and turns Johnny into a monster!

The film sadly has a slightly noticeable departure that has nothing to do with the quirky fun story of the final installment in the HT series.  Adam Sandler, for whatever reason, is not playing Drac and has been replaced by talented voice actor Brian Hull (and TEXAN!!).  Granted it is really hard to notice this since Brian knocks out the voice, but nonetheless the intrigue of why the change is out there.  I think this is NOT a reason to skip out on this wacky adventure.

Adam Sandberg as Johnny takes center stage as the now transformed monster version who goes on an epic odyssey to correct the ramifications of Van Helsing’s “Monsterification Ray”.  The back and forth between Drac and Johnny really has some wonderfully touching elements and harps on the innocent kindness that Mavis sees in Johnny.  As our worldly travelers are in search of the magical crystal needed to get the ray-gun working, we are treated to the now transformed gang of Drac’s besties.  The human versions of Murray, Griffin, Frankenstein and Wayne are pure joy on screen.  Their voice talents Keegan-Michael Key, David Spade, Brad Abrell and Steve Buscemi really seem to embrace the premise of the plot.  Spade’s Griffin especially has some of the most fun elements as the now seeable invisible man. The powerful comedic presence in the HT series has always been the hallmark and the fourth film delivers that laugh out loud punch needed.  Jim Gaffigan as the elder Van Helsing has been a real treat and his wacky ways are once again on point.  The ladies in the HT universe don’t have as much leg work in this film and that is sadly missed as Kathryn Hahn as Ericka, Molly Shannon as Wanda and Fran Drescher as Eunice are limited to just a few moments.

The bigger issues with the film may be the lack of full punch from the Mavis character and the lack of involvement of the kids.  If the franchise hadn’t already announced the end of the series we may have been treated to a better farewell to the young monsters, but nonetheless we get a ray-gun gone bad story.  Overall, the film relies on the established quirky characters going through the slapstick antics that get both adults and kids laughing.  In the laugh meter the film does deliver but this final installment does have a lackluster goodbye.  The film is worth the watch but thankfully you can do it from the comfort of your own home and not shell out big $ on popcorn and candy for the kiddos.

HOTEL TRANSYLANIA:  TRANSFORMANIA

Directed by: Derek Drymon, Jennifer Kluska

Written by: Amos Vernon, Nunzio, Randazzo, Genndy Tartakovsky, Todd Durham

Rated: PG

Selig Rating: 3 Stars

Running Time: 1hr 38min

Comedy / Animation

Release: Premiere Exclusively on Amazon Prime Video January 14th

Starring: Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Brian Hull, Jim Gaffigan, Kathryn Hahn

 

The Selig Rating Scale:

5 Stars – Excellent movie, well worth the price.

4 Stars – Good movie

3 Stars – OK movie

2 Stars – No need to rush. Save it for a rainy day.

1 Star – Good that I saw it on the big screen but wish I hadn’t paid for it.

Written By
More from Gadi Elkon
FINDING THE MONEY – Interview with Filmmaker Maren Poitras
Our Gadi Elkon talked with filmmaker Maren Poitras about her eye-opening documentary,...
Read More
0 replies on “HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA: TRANSFORMANIA – Review by Gadi Elkon”