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Hot Tub Time Machine (2010)

March 30, 2010

8/10 Typical Weekends for Aiden R. 

It’s Back to the Future for grown-ups. Awesome.

Hot Tub Time Machine is about four estranged friends – whose lives all pretty much blow – that decide to spend a weekend back at a ski resort where they once had a kickass weekend back 1986 in the hopes to cheer up their potentially suicidal friend. So they get there, it turns out the town has gone to hell, they say, “Screw it anyway!” and get hammered in their hot tub which, to their surprise, doubles as a time machine that sends them back to that kickass weekend back in ’86.

And that right there is why this movie rocks. It’s not breaking new ground, it’s not the smartest comedy out there and it’s not taking itself seriously, but it plays into something we’ve all fantasized about at one time or another – what it’d be like if you had an effing time machine at your disposal and got to re-live a pivotal moment in your life so that you could pull a total Marty McFly on fate’s ass.

As if the title wasn’t enough to convince me I was gonna like this.

The other great thing about this premise is that it completely avoids getting caught up in the total mindfuck that so often goes along with time travel. It’s also nice that I couldn’t find any plot holes in this regard, but at the same time, what the hell’s the point? It’s called Hot Tub Time Machine, the last thing you need to give a rat’s ass about is if it all makes sense. That kinda nitpicky shit drives me up the wall.

With that being said, it doesn’t take long to realize that this is just a great excuse to make fun of the ’80s and watch these guys try to make things right again while in a constant haze of drugs, sex, booze and Poison, and I don’t know about you, but that is fine by me. A lot of the humor is pretty irreverent and random and that might not be up everyone’s alley, but I’m of the mindset that comedy today is seriously lacking in the irreverent randomness department, so this was a pretty welcome surprise. 

And far as the cast is concerned, it’s actually kinda fifty-fifty.

John Cusack is John Cusack and it’s not that he’s a buzzkill or anything, it’s just that he’s kinda the odd man out and his storyline’s too damn dramatic for its own good. Clark Duke is also okay, but he gets overshadowed big time.

But Craig Robinson and Rob Corddry especially are hilarious. Glad to see Robinson making a name for himself ’cause he’s always been funny as hell on The Office, but I was not expecting Corddry. Never found the guy all that funny on The Daily Show, but he runs away with it here and brought this sucker up from a 7 in a big way.

Yet the strangest thing about this movie was that the funniest member of the whole damn bunch is Crispin Glover of all people. Yeah, Crispin Glover, the guy who nearly kicked David Letterman in the head with his enormous platform shoes. He’s only got this bizarre bit role as a disgruntled bellhop and he’s a total effing nut, but he was the one thing I’m still giggling to myself about after leaving the theater and he’s got the best running gag of the whole movie. 

I’m actually pretty surprised at how much I fun I had with this one. The last time I laughed so hard and consistently at a movie was Zombieland last year, and while it’s not quite up to that standard of awesomeness, Hot Tub Time Machine was still a freakin’ riot. Might be a little on the gross side at times and it drags a bit during Cusack’s scenes, but small complaints for a movie that had me cracking up straight on through to the end. I’d be more than happy to see this one again and I’d be even happier to get it on DVD with a thirty to split with friends.

Just one more reason why hot tubs are the bomb.

13 Comments leave one →
  1. March 30, 2010 7:15 am

    Just like Snakes On a Plane, what you see, is what you get. Nice Review!

  2. Ryan permalink
    March 30, 2010 8:53 am

    Who is Mary McFly? Is that Marty McFly’s sister?

  3. March 30, 2010 2:15 pm

    Hmmm… I wasn’t expecting this. I’ve heard that its actually pretty decent. I just wish they gave it a better title.

    • March 30, 2010 3:45 pm

      Definitely worth a laugh, but I don’t think it’s possible human for them to have given this a better title.

  4. mcarteratthemovies permalink
    March 31, 2010 2:26 pm

    Eh, I was amused by this but didn’t love it — and I’m a girl who loves her randy buddy comedies. The thing that nearly killed it for me was Cusack, who spends the whole movie looking like he’s got a stick lodged up his butt. He never loosens up, never appears to be having any fun, and so he totally harshes the mellow.

    Didn’t stop me from rolling when Corddry made that crack about changing something in the past to “prevent Miley Cyrus.” I’m going to try and work that into coversation whenever possible from now on.

  5. Pablo Chiste permalink
    April 7, 2010 11:48 am

    I was pretty disappointed with such a great title. It seemed to me like most of it was improvised. Even though the Hangover also had a lot of gross out humor, the jokes seemed more carefully scripted.

    Here’s my review…

    • April 7, 2010 12:06 pm

      Yeah, I feel like I liked this a lot more than everyone else did, maybe even moreso than The Hangover. It’s that Crispin Glover, man…

  6. April 11, 2010 1:49 pm

    Yea, this film did nothing for me. I laughed about four times. It just seem to go for the crudest and easiest jokes and they were never funny. Easily the worst film I’ve seen this year. I’m not really a fan of the mean spirited, crass comedy to begin with and if I knew that beforehand maybe I wouldn’t have gone at all.

    • Shig permalink
      October 22, 2010 11:02 am

      totally agree. This film was total anus. I was stoned and it didn’t make me laugh – it was almost like the script had been written by a child.

  7. April 24, 2010 6:05 pm

    Finally got to see this! I wasn’t crying of laughing so much, but I still did laugh enough to be satisfied. Check out my review here:

  8. April 27, 2010 7:23 am

    Caught a preview screening last night (not out til 7th May in the UK!!) and my review’s up today. Thought it was pretty cool, not the best, or most insane flick every, but funny nonetheless. Were you high when you went to see this dude? (It’s OK if you were!) :p


  1. The Top Ten of 2010 « Cut The Crap Movie Reviews

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