But Drac (voiced by Adam Sandler) is keen on teaching little Dennis the ways of vampires, especially as his fangs haven’t come in, suggesting he might take after his human father.
Even though Drac keeps telling himself, “he’s just a late fanger”, it’s obvious he’s concerned. So while the over-protective Mavis (Selena Gomez) is away with her husband in California to see if it’s a more suitable place to raise a human boy, Drac takes Dennis out of his regular routine to teach him to sing creepy songs, scare joggers and fly.
Hotel Transylvania 2 isn’t nearly as funny as the original, possibly because the majority of the story takes place outside of the monster hotel, and it’s the random monsters that live in and visit the hotel that make the first one so much fun (luckily, Blobby plays a key role in the shenanigans outside the hotel).
But there does seem to be more emphasis on the moral of the story in this sequel. In the first movie, the vampire Mavis falls in love with the human Jonathan, and Drac has to learn to accept them. This film follows the same theme in that Drac has to learn to accept Dennis as a human, if in fact he is one.
“Acceptance” might come across as stronger this time around because the focus is on a child – and a cute one at that – so the children this movie was intended for might connect with it on a more personal level.
There is mention of “mixed couples” when Mavis and Jonathan visit California, where monsters and humans sometimes live together, but Mavis quickly realises that she and Jonathan will never be truly accepted as anything but a “mixed couple” and she will always be viewed as an “other”: a ‘monster’.
At one point, when Mavis is listening to Dennis’s grandparents talk about her son and where he should live, she says: “Can everyone please stop saying ‘normal’?”
When Drac takes Dennis to his old “haunts”, he finds that they’re basically conservation parks and rather than being frightened by monsters, the humans think he’s “awesome” and want to take selfies with him standing next to them.
The world is changing; can Drac change, too? Can all the adults trying to make decisions for Dennis do right by him and come to the ultimate conclusion that where he is most happy (in a hotel for monsters) is where he should be?
It’s an Adam Sandler film – written, produced and “acted” by him – and it’s a children’s film as well, so you can bet it all works out wickedly perfectly in the end.
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