Certainly, by all accounts, the best film ever made about a hot tub time machine, this is a dumb, dirty, disastrously-made comic gem that finds a sloppy balance between the romantic 80s-fueled absurdities of Savage Steve Holland and the bro-mantic repertoire of the current age.
The person to thank for this isn’t the film’s (sort of) leading man, John Cusack, its director, Steve Pink, but rather Rob Corddry, who’s performance here as Lou reminds us why improvisation can be a lethal weapon for smart comedians. Even when they’re playing dumb.
HTTM tells the story of four guys with problems who take a weekend ski trip, only to enter a hot tub that’s actually also…a time travel portal. Chevy Chase‘s maintenance man may or may not be the “wise old man who knows more than everyone else.” Thankfully, Chase isn’t the movie for too long. His one reliable joke is calling Clark Duke a “young lady.” It gets old fast.
Adam’s (Cusack) been dumped, Lou’s (Corddry) suicidal, Nick’s (Craig Robinson) whipped by his demanding wife Jacob’s (Duke) sheltered by Second Life.
While its not as well-constructed, well-written or well-acted as 2009’s The Hangover and I Love You, Man, when this film hits it hits big. Most of these BIG hits take place when Corddry or Crispin Glover (who plays a slef-conscious one-armed bagman and steals every scene he’s in) are on screen. Robinson and Duke have their moments as well while Cusack is essentially mocking the kind of character he played straight two decades earlier.
Pink’s direction is uninspired. He mostly says “action” and lets his performers perform.
Low brow jokes include faux-homosexual blowjobs, incest, fork-stabbing, etc.
One would have liked to see a little more direct Cusack rom-com references, but those belong in a far smarter movie. And, at the end of the day, perhaps it’s for the better that Hot Tub Time Machine never tries to be overly smart or sentimental or anything much of anything.
The title of the film is Hot Tub Tim Machine after all.
7 out of 10
Did you see this film? How much did you laugh?