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Review Roundup: Drac's Pack is Back in HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 2

Written by Adam Sandler and Robert Smigel and directed by Genndy Tartakovsky, Drac's pack is back for all-new monster comedy adventure in Sony Pictures Animation's HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 2.

Everything seems to be changing for the better at Hotel Transylvania, Dracula's rigid monster-only hotel policy has finally relaxed, opening up its doors to human guests. But behind closed coffins, Drac is worried that his adorable half-human, half-vampire grandson, Dennis, isn't showing signs of being a vampire. So while Mavis is busy visiting her human in-laws with Johnny - and in for a major cultural shock of her own - "Vampa" Drac enlists her friends Frank, Murray, Wayne, and Griffin to put Dennis through a "monster-in-training" boot camp. But little do they know that Drac's grumpy and ver old school dad Vlad is about to pay a family visit to the hotel. And when Vlad finds out that his great-grandson is not a pure blood - and humans are now welcome at Hotel Transylvania - things are going to get batty!

HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 2 stars Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Steve Buscemi, and David Spade.

Let's see what the critics had to say!

Glenn Kenny, The New York Times: Similarly, an animated children's movie might seem an unusual vehicle for airing grievances about helicopter-parenting culture. On the other hand, at this particular juncture in Western civilization no one cares about what's appropriate or, for that matter, coherent. The movie is also disinclined to consider the cognitive dissonance arising from the replacement of the lullaby lyrics "Twinkle, twinkle, little star" with "Suffer, suffer, scream in pain." Still, some jokes actually work (a GPS-voice gag induced unforced laughter), and the whole thing is amiable and colorful and surprisingly low on body-function gags. It may not kill you to take your kids.

Ben Kendrick, Screen Rant: Hotel Transylvania 2 is not going to win-over viewers who were underwhelmed by Hotel Transylvania. Tartakovsky's latest visit with Dracula and Mavis affords slight improvements over its predecessor, especially in terms of comedic restraint; yet, there still isn't much substance for older viewers. Instead, Hotel Transylvania 2 offers cute but brainless escapism for young moviegoers - as well as parents looking to distract their children for a few hours. It's a harmless CG kids film, one that will have no trouble entertaining its target audience; though, in a genre full of films that can pull double-duty as quality movies (not just quality kids movies), Hotel Transylvania 2's weak story is at odds with the imagination put into designs for the film's monstrous inhabitants.

Nick Schager, Variety: Dracula and his monster-hotel cohorts are still struggling to accept others' differences in "Hotel Transylvania 2," a doggedly frantic sequel that hews to the franchise's rapid-fire comedic formula. In this incessantly busy story, the famed Count has consented to his daughter's marriage to a human, but finds himself faced with a new tolerance challenge when his grandson Dennis is slow to develop fangs. What ensues is an avalanche of zany hijinks dominated by groan-worthy wisecracks targeted at young and old audiences alike, and Adam Sandler and his castmates' overcooked scary accents. Unlikely to win over anyone who wanted to torch its predecessor, this more-of-the-same sequel should nonetheless prove a welcome pre-holiday diversion for the first film's pint-sized fans, and at least equal the impressive $148 million haul of Sony's earlier surprise hit.

Kyle Smith, New York Post: Even at 89 minutes, "Hotel Transylvania 2" is so full of digressions and filler and random zaniness that it seems to go on as long as Sandler's career has been in decline. The movie is a sort of kindergarten "SNL" sketch extended by having Dracula break dance or by introducing Johnny's boring parents (Megan Mullally, Nick Offerman) to stand around feeling awkward and get Drac's blood coughed on them.

Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News: "Hotel" lacks the standards set by Pixar and other great animation companies, and its in-joke bar is far below "Monsters, Inc." and "Monsters Vs. Aliens," to name two other animated creature features. This movie is, however, more accessible to young kids than "ParaNorman" and Tim Burton's stop-motion work.

Sandie Angulo Chen, The Washington Post: If you enjoy Sandler's brand of obvious humor and don't mind noticeable Sony product placements, this inoffensive sequel is, like its predecessor, just enough for a Halloween treat.

Jordan Hoffman, The Guardian: There are a few amusing gags about "mixed marriages" in Hotel Transylvania 2, but the script by Sandler and Robert Smigel (the genius behind Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog) is surprisingly tame, with lots of selfie jokes that won't be funny in a few years. Actually, they aren't funny now. Every beat is predictable and even the most dazzled kids might wonder why father and daughter won't just talk about their obvious feelings. Compared to the nuanced story of Inside Out, it's absolutely infuriating.

Devan Coggan, Entertainment Weekly: Genndy Tartakovsky returns as director, and the creator of Samurai Jack and Dexter's Laboratory has somehow managed to kick up the energy even more for the sequel, with plenty of skateboard montages and madcap scooter races through the Transylvanian forest. Many of the wisecracks are low-hanging fruit (like jokes about the rampant gentrification of the Transylvanian countryside), but most of them still land, thanks to a game voice cast including Mel Brooks, Steve Buscemi, Keegan-Michael Key, David Spade, and Kevin James. Less effective are the cloying family moments, and the sheer number of emotional heart-to-hearts rob the flick of its fangs.

Michael Rechtshaffen, Hollywood Reporter: Some notable upgrades have been made for Hotel Transylvania 2, the sequel to the 2012 Adam Sandler animated vehicle that took a sizable bite out of the box office but proved to be less accommodating where the cobweb-bare script was concerned. This time around, greater attention has been paid to story and character development (while scaling back on all the sight gags) and the substantial results give the ample voice cast and returning director Genndy Tartakovskymore to sink their teeth into, with pleasing results. While it won't ever be mistaken for premium Pixar, the Sony Pictures Animation effort should have no problem scaring up a monster debut - the first Hotel Transylvania set a September opening weekend record - especially considering it'll have the family market all to itself.

Max Nicholson, IGN: While Hotel Transylvania 2 is a visual marvel, it doesn't come anywhere close to the originality of the first movie. The story is weaker, the laughs are infrequent, and you can feel the movie's desperate attempts to seem hip. Despite its comedian-studded cast, the real star of Hotel 2 is Tartakovsky's animation, which is top-notch. It almost makes you wish Sony had moved forward with Tartakovsky's pet project, Popeye, rather than a sequel to a movie that didn't really need following up.

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