You can check out any time you'd like, but you can't never wait, wrong hotel.

Just going to be a quick review today, as I am working on a larger article that should go live on Monday. That one wont be a review, but will be about movies, so I am counting it. Get off my back!
Since I am still playing around with my new 3D monitor for my computer, I find myself watching a lot of movies that I would have previously ignored if presented to me in the standard two dimensions. For the most part I have found the 3D effects to be gimmicky in most movies, pointless in others, and only truly impressive in a select few (Dredd 3D looks awesome in the slo-mo scenes, and surprisingly Jurassic Park pulls a really good looking effect out of an relatively old movie), with that in mind, I sat down with absolutely no expectations to watch "Hotel Transylvania" figuring that, since it isn't a Pixar movie, it probably wouldn't be all that good.

Well color me surprised, not only is the movie good, but it is very good. Possibly even the best animated film released in 2012 (with the possible exception of "Wreck-it Ralph").

In the year 1895, Count Dracula (Adam Sandler) commissions the building of a hotel for monsters, a place where the creepy-crawlies of the world can get together, without worry, to relax, and escape humans, who are as scary to monsters as they are to us, and to keep his young daughter Mavis (Selena Gomez) safe and in his sights at all times. Flash forward to the present, and we are celebrating Mavis' 118th birthday (apparently in vampire years, that is the equivalent of a human 18 year old, which is odd, as I thought vampires aged in dog years which would make Mavis 826 years old. Guess we are going to have to agree to disagree movie), and all the monster staples are there to party: Frankenstein (Kevin James), The Wolf-man (Steve Buscemi), The Invisible Man (David Spade), a (the?) mummy (CeeLo Green). Everything is going great, until a random hiker (Andy Sanburg) manages to wander into the hotel. What's gonna happen?

"Hotel Transylvania" represents a rarity in today's children's movie world, a movie, for kids, that doesn't talk down to them. Make no mistake the screenplay (co-written by SNL legend Robert Smigel, who created the Ambiguously Gay Duo) is for children, but makes sure to treat kids like little adults who just don't swear or need a whole lot of blood in their movies. I found myself laughing out loud on more than one occasion, and really started to enjoy myself when the movie started getting going. As for the direction, this marks the feature film debut of Genndy Tartakosky, who, even if you don't know his name, you know (he created Samurai Jack, Dexter's Lab, Billy and Mandy, Star Wars: The Clone Wars [the good one], and almost everything else Cartoon Network aired in the late 2000's), and he does an fantastic job of it. The music was scored by Mark Mothersbaugh of DEVO fame and really, just a great guy.

A totally unbiased statement and in no way influenced by the fact that he drew all over the painting I made of him that one time in Michigan.

All in all, "Hotel" is a wonderful, heartwarming movie and has a cast list that is simply amazing. The characters are fleshed out (even the ones without flesh ~~rimshot~~) and you really do find yourself caring about Mavis, who is a strong willed and likable female character, which is a nice change of pace from movies like "Frankenweenie" where the female characters exist only to give the male characters someone to pine over. The jokes work 90% of the time, and the obligatory musical numbers are kept to a minimum (still in there, but they aren't in much). For a movie that I thought, going into it, would be a shameless money grab like 99% of CGI movies are nowadays, "Hotel Transylvania" blew me away.

If you have kids, make a point to watch it with them, if you don't have kids, feel free to give it a rent, you will have a spooky good time.

Note: Gene Shalit broke into my office and wrote that last line. He has been dealt with and new screens are now in my windows.

Like a raccoon, that guy...

Like I said, just a quick one for now, as I am working on something pretty cool (hopefully) for next week. Until then, make sure to keep watching the skies and visit my other website at Do it for America.
Rating: A

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