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Genndy Tartakovsky
Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, Adam Samberg
Writing Credits:
Genndy Tartakovsky, Michael McCullers

Count Dracula and company participate in a cruise for sea-loving monsters, unaware that their boat is being commandeered by the monster-hating Van Helsing family.

Box Office:
$80 million.
Opening Weekend
$44,076,225 on 4267 Screens.
Domestic Gross

Rated PG.

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
English Audio Descriptive Service
French Dolby 5.1
French Audio Descriptive Service
Spanish Dolby 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 97 min.
Price: $14.99
Release Date: 10/9/2018

• Audio Commentary with Director Genndy Tartakovsky, Production Designer Scott Wills and Visual Effects Supervisor Michael Ford
• 2 Original Shorts
• 3” Scary-Oke” Sing Alongs
• “Behind the Screams” Featurette
• “Johnny’s Home Movies”
• “Meet the New Characters” Featurette
• “The New Guys” Featurette
• “Drac’s Zing-tastic Read Along”
• “Monster Activities”
• Dance Party
• Lyric Videos
• Previews


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BDT220P Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation [Blu-Ray] (2018)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (June 20, 2023)

After two movies largely located in the title location, we get a change with the third film in the Hotel Transylvania series. With 2018’s Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, the monsters head out of town.

Hotel Transylvania proprietor Count Dracula (voiced by Adam Sandler) and crew start to get stressed out, so his daughter Mavis (Selena Gomez) tries to find a solution. She suggests that they and the rest of the crew take a vacation.

This leads to a “monster cruise”, where the long-lonely Drac finds potential love with human Captain Ericka (Kathryn Hahn). However, she comes with a secret, one that could threaten Drac and family.

I’ll say this for the Hotel series: the movies made consistent box office returns. Actually, though the totals stayed pretty similar in the US, worldwide sales improved with each new movie, so Hotel 3 turned into the biggest international hit of the bunch.

That doesn’t necessarily mean it offers the best of the bunch, though I admit I went into it without major expectations. I thought the first movie seemed okay but a bit disappointing, whereas Hotel Transylvania 2 offered improvements, even if it never quite dazzled.

At least Hotel 2 pointed in the right direction. While I still didn’t expect greatness from Hotel 3, I entered it with higher hopes than I brought to the first sequel.

In theory, the new setting feels like a breath of fresh air. However, as Drac himself notes, a cruise ship just offers a hotel on the water, so don’t anticipate much real difference.

The movie does take some advantage of the ocean locations. It uses these in a moderate manner.

Still, most of Hotel 3 offers a lot of silly monster antics mixed with sporadic plot elements. Here the focus falls on Dracula’s desired love affair and the threat that manifests, but those elements tend to often fall into the background.

Granted, that seems to act as the franchise’s formula. The movie go for general themes that influence the action, but much of the material just exists for laughs and doesn’t connect too closely to the overall narrative.

This entertains on occasion, but three films into the series, the lack of much real substance becomes more of an issue. Yeah, as noted, we do find a general plot, but the movie deviates from it too often for it to matter a whole lot.

This means Hotel 3 lives or dies with its goofy shenanigans. While I wouldn’t say it dies, I do think it fails to find much of real cleverness or interest.

Most sequels exist essentially as product, but that feels more true than ever with Hotel 3. Hotel 2 made more sense as a continuation of the first movie’s themes, but Hotel 3 feels more random.

This leads to a scattered movie that never gets into a groove, and the comedy pieces rarely turn into anything special. A few connect – like Gremlin Air – but most feel predictable and without much inventiveness.

At least Hotel 3 gives us another fine cast. In addition to a slew of returning actors like Sandler and Gomez, we get good new additions such as Hahn and Jim Gaffigan.

At no point for Hotel 3 turn into a poor movie. It just seems lackluster and without much to make it engaging or amusing.

The Disc Grades: Picture A-/ Audio B+/ Bonus B-

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. We got fine visuals here.

Sharpness looked strong. Virtually no softness materialized in this tight presentation.

Jaggies and moiré effects failed to exist, and no edge enhancement appeared. The transfer came completely free from source flaws, so this was a perfectly clean presentation.

Hotel 3 opted for a palette with a good mix of tones, as we found a fairly broad range of colors. The tones seemed well-depicted and rich.

Blacks were deep and firm, while shadows appeared clean and concise. Outside of the occasional soft shots, I felt pleased with this appealing presentation.

I also felt the DTS-HD MA 5.1 audio of Hotel 3 satisfied. Given its story, the movie didn’t offer constant action, but it boasted more than enough good sequences to make it engaging.

The track offered plenty of flight and other active material to create a broad, involving setting. It also contributed a lot of localized speech and other components that allowed it to open up the tale.

In addition, audio quality was strong. Speech seemed natural and distinctive, and music offered nice range and vivacity.

Effects came across as accurate and dynamic. They boasted fine punch and appeared concise and full. Although the audio didn’t always dazzle, it soared often enough to earn a “B+“.

As we shift to extras, we find an audio commentary from writer/director Genndy Tartakovsky, production designer Scott Wills and visual effects supervisor Michael Ford. All three sit together for this running, screen-specific look at story/characters, cast and performances, visual and character design, cinematography, animation and music.

We get a decent overview of the film here, though one that leans toward nuts and bolts domains. While I’d like to know more about creative choices, this nonetheless ends up as a reasonably informative chat.

We find two Original Shorts: “Puppy” (4:55) and “Goodnight Mr. Foot” (4:07). The first shows how Dennis acquired his pet dog, while the second lets us see Bigfoot’s visit to the hotel. Both offer amusement, though the quirky “Foot” fares best.

We also find three Scary-oke Sing-Alongs for “Dennis Had a Giant Dog”, “Monsters Like to Party own”, “Oh These Wolf Pups!”. In a similar vein, we get four Monster Lullaby Scary-oke Sing Alongs for “Hush Little Monster”, “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Bat”, “Vlady Had a Little Drac” and “Deck the Halls”. Kids may enjoy these.

Behind the Screams runs seven minutes, 29 seconds and offers notes from Tartakovsky, producer Michelle Murdocca, and actors Andy Samberg, David Spade, Selena Gomez, Keegan-Michael Key, Kathryn Hahn, Jim Gaffigan, Chrissie Teigen, Joe Jonas, Chris Parnell, Aaron LaPlante and Asher Blinkoff.

We get notes about cast and characters. A few minor insights emerge and I like shots of the actors at work, but most of the reel feels like fluff.

Next comes Meet the New Characters a five-minute, 40-second piece that involves Tartakovsky, Ford and senior animation supervisor Alan Hawkins.

We learn about the design of the movie’s fresh roles. It delivers a brief but informative overview.

Johnny’s Home Movies spans five minutes, 19 seconds and shows clips from the first two Hotel movies accompanied by in-character comments from Andy Samberg and Asher Blinkoff. It’s a cute but unnecessary summary.

With Drac’s Zing-tastic Read-Along, we get a two-minute, 31-second clip in which we get a lyrics-on-screen narration of a story about Drac. It includes some original voice talent, so that adds a bit of value.

Four components show up under Monster Activities. “Plan Your Own Spook-tacular Sleepover” (17:22) gives a lot of ideas for kids’ home parties, while “Vampire Make-overs” (3:41) shows people how to use makeup to look like Mavis and Drac.

“How to Draw Dracula” (5:24) brings a tutorial from Tartatovsky, and “Make Your Own Watermelon Jack-o-Lantern” (1:04) seems self-explanatory. “Draw” becomes interesting for all audiences, while the others work better for youngsters.

A Dance Party (2:46) mixes movie shots with various people as they shake a rug to “I See Love”. It’s forgettable.

Five Lyric Videos follow, as they bring a combo of animation, songs and on-screen words. It becomes another forgettable kid-focused extra.

The disc opens with ads for Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Hotel Transylvania: The Series, Destined to Ride and Peter Rabbit. We also get trailers for the first two Hotel movies as well as for a mobile game but no promo for Hotel 3 itself.

Although the second movie in the series showed signs of life, Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation goes back to the mediocrity of the original film. While a watchable affair, the third chapter seems relentlessly meh. The Blu-ray comes with positive picture and audio as well as a decent set of supplements. Expect a forgettable comedic tale here.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
0 3:
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