Halloween Movie Reviews: Frankenweenie and Hotel Transylvania

Frankenweenie Poster

Even though Halloween is over, there is still some family fun and spookiness to be had. Two of this season’s hottest movies are full of creepy, ghoulish fun. Last Saturday I finally decided to go and see Frankenweenie and Hotel Transylvania. Part of being a fashionisto or a fashionista is being up to date with everything current in pop culture. These are my thoughts on both of these movies.

Frankenweenie- Directed by the famously creepy director, Tim Burton, this film is really a cinematic look back on traditional Tim Burton.  A new twist on the original Frankenstein story, it follows the dark yet lovable character of Victor Frankenstein who ends up loosing his beloved dog Sparky. After being struck by inspiration from his creepy yet brilliant science teacher, Victor builds a machine that brings Sparky back to life. The conflict comes in when kids at school discover Victor’s accomplishment and want to steal his scientific process for their own science fair projects. This film is a stroke of pure genius. I have always been a really big Tim Burton fan. I think the way he can draw you in and evoke feelings for something on the grotesque side, is truly an art. It’s also amazing that through the use of subtly and the antithesis of, Tim Burton controls the emotions of the audience throughout the whole movie.

My favorite part about Frankenweenie was the fact that it was in black and white. Most people of my generation would be less than thrilled to see a black and white film, but the mixture of this monochromatic color scheme relates perfectly to the 1950’s monster movie genre this film was obviously shooting for. One of the more smaller yet notable details in this movie was an engraving on a gravestone in a pet cemetery. It was that of a dead cat, which said “Goodbye Kitty”; making a witty reference to the lovable Japanese pop culture icon “Hello Kitty”. I can honestly say, this film kept up with some of Burton’s other classics like Edward Scissorhands, and Nightmare Before Christmas. Although, I must warn anyone who is thinking about to watching Frankenweenie, the subject matter of a child loosing their dog and the prospect of bringing something back from the dead is rather dark, and Tim Burton does not shy away from the gruesome details. But overall, I ADORED this movie and it should be seen and collected by the true fans of Tim Burton.

Hotel Transylvania Jacket

Hotel Transylvania- When I first saw the previews for this film, I was slightly worried for it’s financial future. But since I am a HUGE fan of Halloween and old Hollywood monsters, I decided to go see it. Since the commercials really didn’t reveal anything about the plot, I expected a chaotic comedy. You know, slapstick humor. Turns out, Hotel Transylvania was so much more than that. The film starts off with visions of Dracula raising his daughter and building a safe haven for monsters. These monsters are shunned by society. Dracula’s daughter, Mavis’ 118th birthday comes around and she wants to leave the safe haven, which is affectionately referred to as the “Hotel” because Mavis has never seen the outside world. The story is a quintessential “empty nest” syndrome film.

The father is worried about the daughter and ends up lying to her in attempt to protect her from the humans. However, there is a twist. A surprise guest shows up at this hotel for monsters and it’s a human. Now, the thing Dracula fears most is walking around his castle and with good reason. Copious amounts of problems ensue because of the human presence in the castle. Following suit with traditional kids’ movies, there is an overarching theme or lesson to be learned, this time for parents. It is: Parents you should let your children experience some things on their own. This all-star cast includes Kevin James, the Sandler family (including Adam, his wife and his daughter), Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez and Fran Drescher who really helps to bring the movie’s classic monster characters to life in this family fun, wacky and touching adventure that is soon to become a household classic…at least in my house.