Four guys embark on a wild weekend. Shenanigans and hi-jinks ensue. It’s rude, it’s crude, it’s funny and it’s NOT The Hangover. Instead I’m talking about Hot Tub Time Machine. Yes, its absurd as the title sounds. Does Hot Tub Time Machine sink in it’s own ridiculousness or does it float to the top of its genre?
Starring John Cusack, Clark Duke, Craig Robinson and Rob Corddry, the film revolves around four friends who take a weekend off to go vacation at a ski resort. While at the resort they decide to put to use the hot tub on their balcony. Excessive drinking ensues and the next thing they know they wake up in the morning but something isn’t right. They’ve been transported back to the 1980’s. Now the guys must find a way to get back to present time without re-writing history.
The plot serves more as just a premise. Once our protagonists are transported to the 80’s the plot becomes superfluous and unnecessary. As the film goes on, the plot becomes weaker until it is just barely held together. This is fine though, I didn’t watch this film expecting to be drawn in by a intricate and intriguing plot. This movie is to be watched for the laughs and those deliver in abundance.
Hot Tub Time Machine is undoubtedly going to be compared to The Hangover and while not as funny as that huge 20009 hit, Hot Tub Time Machine does offer an enjoyable and often humorous experience. This is due in large part to the acting.
I got little to no laughs out of John Cusack and Clark Duke, but Robinson and Corddry made up for it in spades.Cusack simply seems too old and beaten up for the role. He’s parodying the roles he used to play in the 80’s as he smoothly coasts through each scene. He comes off as tired and unenthusiastic and just a poor casting choice in my opinion. Clark Duke does show some promise as an actor but he just didn’t fit in here. Perhaps it was his age difference or his sense of humor, but he just seemed awkward in the role.
Robinson and Corddry really carry the film. They share a lot of scenes together and they are comedic gold. The improv is heavy and the two work off each other so well that it is a real treat to watch. The funniest scenes in the film are all thanks to these two.
Aside from Robinson and Corddry we are treated to another gem, Crispin Glover. I was pretty shocked to find myself laughing out loud at Glover but he’s pretty damn funny in the film. He has a minor role but his scenes are some of the funniest. Someone else who had a minor part was Chevy Chase. In his inevitable role (this is a throwback to the 80’s after all), was simply terrible. He relied on one gag for all his scenes and not only did it get old, it simply wasn’t funny the first time. I didn’t buy his schtick and he kind of ruined the scenes he was in.
Steve Pink takes the directing role for this film and though he does an admirable job, some of the scenes feel awkward, as if they weren’t complete or are just missing something. Due to this a number of the gags fall flat and feel like they could of been funny if directed and executed properly. Overall we do get a genuinely enjoyable comedy with a few weak spots.
In the end we get a bunch of awesome 80’s references, some nice pokes at 21st century culture, a complete lack of regard for common decency, a handful of time travel paradoxes and some uncomfortable jokes (the Michael Jackson line anyone?).
Hot Tub Time Machine is almost exactly what you’d expect it to be, a movie that completely ignore its plot and uses it as a premise to have fun and make you laugh. Leave you brain at the door for this one because you won’t need it.
The video looks pretty good here. Facial expressions are very detailed and the picture looks sharp and crisp throughout. The nature also looks great, from the snow to the trees and everything in between, the picture shines.While everything is solid, there is nothing that pushes the limits.
The audio is also very very good as it shows off the impressive soundtrack. Littered with 80′s music, the film sounds great. The scene where Craig Robinson performs a concert is especially good. The dialogue is reproduced pretty well and the few surround moments that are here all come through in booming fashion. Like the video though, it doesn’t push any boundaries, it just offers a well rounded transfer.
The special features are quite lame and for such a fun movie they really could of done more. We get an unrated version which is only a minute or two longer and adds nothing of significance which is pretty upsetting. Aside from that we get some trailers and deleted scenes, all of which are useless.
Hot Tub Time Machine is a solid film. It’s very funny at parts and although it falls short in some areas, it is certainly worth seeing. I’d recommend a purchase since this is a movie you can watch again, especially with friends. The transfer is solid and although the special features are a let down this is still a great overall package.
Hot Tub Time Machine is a movie I can easily watch again. Corddry and Robinson are hilarious and Crispin Glover steals all his scenes.