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Hotel Transylvania: Transformania: Film Review

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Drac and the pack are back like you’ve never seen them before in Hotel Transylvania: Transformania. The fourth and final instalment in the popular Sony Animation franchise is a monster fun-sized epic adventure that’s great for the whole family. It takes the story in new exciting directions whilst still retaining the classic witty and silly humour that the franchise is well known for.

We reunite with our favourite monsters for an all-new story that presents Drac (Brian Hull) with his most terrifying task yet. When Van Helsing’s (Jim Gaffigan) mysterious invention, the “Monsterfication Ray’, goes haywire, Drac and his monster pals are all transformed into humans, and Johnny (Andy Samberg) becomes a monster!. In their new mismatched bodies, it becomes a freaky Friday situation but on a Tuesday. Drac now stripped of his powers, and an exuberant Johnny, loving life as a monster, must team up and race across the globe to find a cure before it’s too late and before they drive each other crazy.

With the help of Mavis (Selena Gomez) and the hilariously human Drac Pack, the heat is on to find a way to switch themselves back before their transformations become permanent.

SONY PICTURES ANIMATION

It has been a long time since Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation was released, as the fourth instalment in the beloved franchise was delayed due to the ongoing pandemic. But now releasing as an Amazon Original, Hotel Transylvania returns with Transformania. A noteworthy improvement from its predecessor and truly a heartfelt addition to the franchise. What I loved about the film was that through the comedy and gags it showcases wholesome messages and discussions such as coming of age, valuing differences, ageing, and ultimately looking for the good in everything. Animation is a fantastic way to convey these themes to the target audience as it has larger-than-life lovable and goofy characters.

The humour is absolutely funny. Hotel Transylvania has always been a good source of laughter as it’s filled with gags galore. kids will be cracking up non-stop as jokes for all ages feature, even some for the adults.

The animation is just mesmerising as the franchise maintains its gift for well-crafted, creepy silliness. It maintains the durability and gives Transformania an upgrade as each sequence is visually stunning. The Hotel full of monsters includes different textures such as fur, scales and slime and in contrast to that is the lush green South American Jungle Drac and Johnny find themselves in when they head off on the quest to find the cure to transform back. Along the way, though they encounter pollen, piranha, and mosquitoes, getting to see these two characters work together after the last three films establishing their differences was great and surprisingly good.

SONY PICTURES ANIMATION

Transformania also shakes things up a little with some sufficiently goofy body-swap transformations which allow the story to take a sufficient turn and perspective, especially seeing each character’s reactions and ultimately how they now view their counterparts. I loved the Human Drac design which is essentially a stripped-down Dracula who’s become instantly more vulnerable and in Dad-mode but stills retain the hilariousness of the character. Turning Drac’s Pack into humans was also a funny sub-plot as its an interesting turn of events, with Frank (Brad Abrell), Wayne (Steve Buscemi), Griffin the invisible man (David Spade), Murray (Keegan-Michael Key) and Blobby all transformed into humans and Jell-O truly make for an entertaining fun watch.

SONY PICTURES ANIMATION

The film features gleefully kinetic visuals with action sequences and the storyline showcases that progress can be made when different types of people/monsters work together.

Youtuber turned professional voice-actor Brian Hull who previously voiced Drac in the Hotel Transylvania short “Monster Pets” does such a good job throughout the movie and manages to grow into the role rather well.

For the final chapter of the Hotel Transylvania film series, franchise creator Genndy Tartakovsky returns as one of the screenwriters and executive producers. Selena Gomez will also serve as an executive producer, while reprising her role as Drac’s daughter, Mavis, alongside Andy Samberg, returning as Johnny. The film also features Kathryn Hahn, Jim Gaffigan, Steve Buscemi, Molly Shannon, David Spade, Keegan-Michael Key, Brian Hull, Fran Drescher, Brad Abrell and Asher Blinkoff. Directed by Derek Drymon and Jennifer Kluska.

Overall Hotel Transylvania: Transformania was a fun pleasant spooktacular surprise and perfect for the whole family to enjoy. Featuring great life lessons for the young audience and adult fans of animation alike.

Amazon Studios will release Hotel Transylvania: Transformania this Friday, January 14th globally on Prime Video.

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Animation

LUCK Review | A Magical and Inspiring Adventure!

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From Apple Original Films and Skydance Animation comes their first animated feature which premieres on AppleTV+ this Friday, August 5th. I adored this movie and was truly charmed as the story is something the whole family can get behind and will find it fun but also moving as the film shows how we perceive good luck but also how bad luck can lead to the best things that you never expected would happen in your lifetime.

“Luck” centres around the story of Sam Greenfield, the unluckiest person in the world. When she discovers the never-before-seen Land of Luck, Sam must unite with the magical creatures there to turn her luck around. Eva Noblezada provides the voice for Sam. When she ages out of foster care, Sam discovers the Land of Luck and embarks on a quest that could change her luck forever. And despite her bad luck and clumsiness and everything that goes wrong, Sam never lets anything get in her way.

Apple TV+.

Simon Pegg voices Bob, a mischievous black cat from the Land of Luck. He’s all about number one, he’s a self-preservationist, so it’s all about him which makes him sound very selfish. However underneath he’s just trying to survive and once Sam, invariably enters his world she starts to penetrate that facade he has. The Captain, voiced by Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony winner Whoopi Goldberg, stands guard as the head of security. She sees Bob for what she thinks he is and that’s a black cat, she thinks they’re unlucky. Jane Fonda voices Babe the Dragon, the exuberant CEO of Good Luck and undisputed luckiest ancient being in all the land.

Throughout our world, we’ve become very superstitious and have long ascribed luck to little trinkets. In different cultures, we’ve had lucky pennies, four-leaf covers, horseshoes, dreamcatchers, Maneki Neko, ladybugs, etc. All of these are meant to bring luck and ward off bad luck so getting to see a whole world based on these two factors was incredible, especially in a stylistic world like the Land of Luck. A world that creates the moments in your life where everything goes right or wrong. This amazing colourful world is where all kinds of magical creatures work together to create Luck, the good and bad. Throughout Sam’s journey, she meets Leprechauns such as Gerry voiced by Colin O’Donoghue, bunnies in hazmat suits and a flamboyant unicorn names Jeff voiced by Flula Borg. They all work tirelessly every day to bring you those sweet fortunate moments.

Apple TV+.

But Luck isn’t complete without the bad luck which is made on the other side of this world. A team of goats, roots, and goblins work to make your day a little more frustrating. We’ve all had these moments of stepping in gum, losing your keys, and in my case spilling a hot cup of tea over a MacBook Pro. The world-building showcases a fine balance between good luck and bad luck, however, the tiniest amount of bad luck can shut down the Land of luck’s entire operation, which is totally thrown off by Sam’s arrival. Things are certainly about to get interesting.  Skydance Animation has truly created a world I’d love to visit. Production designer Fred Warter has given the Land of Luck its personality and colour pallet. The use of green for good luck and purple for bad luck is genius and those two colours truly complement each other as the use of colours in this film help amplify each sequence.

Apple TV+.

As the title suggests, Luck sees Sam trying her best to save this newly discovered world after she brings her unfortunate bad luck into this sacred space. Throughout the film, we discover why she’s in search of a lucky penny and ultimately Luck is an original story that’ll touch people’s hearts with its strong messages that give us hope. Luck isn’t so much about the trinkets and charms and what it means to be unlucky which I can say features some funny gags, it’s rather about love and finding your forever family.

Luck also taps into the reality of the foster care system and the emotionally tolling process that is adoption.

The film is truly an amazing story, one that works for Skydance Animation’s first feature but also Apple Tv’s first original feature film. Everything from character design to the environment is outstanding. The Land of Luck is so universal and relatable, Luck is totally random. You can’t control it, you can’t create it. The world mirrors our own but it has good luck at the top and bad luck at the bottom. They’re both opposite sides of the coin. The film was also made over Zoom and many of the actors did the voicework in their homes.

Ultimately this movie made me feel inspired, to never give up on myself, never give up on my dreams and just keep going as life can be hard sometimes but luckily it will turn around.

Apple TV+.

Are you ready to step into the Land of Luck? Thanks to Toikido for sending out the awesome merchandise for us to review!. My family absolutely adored the film and the toys. Our favourite character is Bob the cat voiced by Simon Pegg so we were excited to receive the deluxe interactive talking plush. Tia aged eight says “It’s so soft and cuddly”. Bob is delightfully curious and mischievous and is so self-obsessed that he comes with over twenty-five phrases. Press Bob’s left hind paw to hear Pegg’s vocals and phrases which include “Top of the morning to ya”, and “You flushed my penny down the toilet”.

Links to purchase these magical products are below!

You can also bring the world of Luck to life with the deluxe figures of Bob the black cat, Jeff the Unicorn, Lucky Pig, and Sam. It’s awesome to have my favourite characters as fun action figures as you’ll be able to play out scenes from the beautifully animated film.

The magical and adventurous animated film is helmed by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Peggy Holmes (“The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning”), from an original screenplay written by Kiel Murray (“Raya and the Last Dragon,” “Cars 3,” “Cars”), Jon Aibel and Glenn Berger (“Kung Fu Panda 2,” “Trolls”). John Lasseter, David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and David Eisenmann are producing for Skydance Animation.

“Luck” joins an expanding lineup of the Apple Original Films and Skydance Animation partnership, alongside upcoming titles such as the highly anticipated feature “Spellbound,” and the animated series “The Search for WondLa,” with several more feature films and television series to be announced. “Luck” follows the recent Apple/Skydance NAACP nomination for Outstanding Animated Short-Form and Annie Awards nomination for Best Music for “Blush,” written and directed by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Joe Mateo (“Prep & Landing,” “Big Hero 6”), and composed by Hollywood Music in Media Award winner Joy Ngiaw (“Red,” “Fish Head”), now streaming on Apple TV+.

Luck” will be available in select cinemas and available on Apple TV+ this Friday, August 5th. 

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Animation

Battle of the Super Sons | Warner Bros. Entertainment

Ahhhh, to be young… and charged with saving the world from impending doom! That’s the burden that 11-year-old Jonathan Kent and reluctant young sidekick Damian Wayne face. On his birthday, Jonathan Kent learns his dad is Superman and that he has latent superpowers of his own! He also meets the legendary Dark Knight and current Boy Wonder, Damian. But when the two boys are forced to team up to protect their loved ones from a hostile alien force, will they become the Super Sons they’re destined to be?

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Genre:

Animation, Action

Release Date:

December 18, 2022

Director:

Rick Morales, Matt Peters

Cast:

Jack Dylan, Jack Griffo, Laura Baley

Plot Summary:

Ahhhh, to be young… and charged with saving the world from impending doom! That’s the burden that 11-year-old Jonathan Kent and reluctant young sidekick Damian Wayne face. On his birthday, Jonathan Kent learns his dad is Superman and that he has latent superpowers of his own! He also meets the legendary Dark Knight and current Boy Wonder, Damian. But when the two boys are forced to team up to protect their loved ones from a hostile alien force, will they become the Super Sons they’re destined to be?

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Animation

Strange World | Teaser Trailer | Walt Disney Animation Studios

The legendary Clades are a family of explorers whose differences threatened to topple their latest and most crucial mission.

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Genre:

Animation, Action, Adventure

Release Date:

November 23, 2022

Director:

Don Hall

 Cast:

Jake Gyllenhaal, Alan Tudyk

Plot Summary:

The legendary Clades are a family of explorers whose differences threatened to topple their latest and most crucial mission.

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