Does everything Adam Sandler touch these days turn to crap? Even when he's a voice in a cartoon, as in "Hotel Transylvania," Sandler's one-take, everything-I-say-is-funny attitude spoils the fun.
Sandler provides the voice to Count Dracula, here a worried single dad who has built an exclusive resort hotel that caters to human-fearing monsters and provides a haven for Drac's daughter, Mavis (voiced by Selena Gomez). For her 118th birthday, Mavis wants to spread her bat wings and see the world from which Dracula has shielded her.
As her birthday party gets rolling, a stray human hiker, Jonathan (voiced by Andy Samberg, Sandler's "That's My Boy" co-star), wanders into the hotel, and Dracula works to keep him from scaring the monstrous guests. (Any similarity between this plot and Pixar's "Monsters, Inc." is, no doubt, coincidental.)
Director Genndy Tartakovsky (the creator of "Dexter's Laboratory" and "Samurai Jack") keeps the computer animation lively, with some inventive touches and a constantly moving camera view to highlight the 3-D effects.
The voice casting is uninspired, as Sandler assembles his cadre of buddies (Kevin James voicing Frankenstein, David Spade as the Invisible Man, Steve Buscemi as the Wolfman) for recording sessions that were probably more fun for them than they are for us.
Opens Friday, Sept. 28, at theaters everywhere; rated PG for some rude humor, action and scary images; 91 minutes. For more movie reviews, visit nowsaltlake.com/movies.