Jonathan H. (bigjohn84) from WILLIAMSTOWN, KY Reviewed on 6/26/2014...
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Alice H. (singlegalkansas) from TOPEKA, KS Reviewed on 11/4/2010...
The humor was dirty fun but the acting was pitiful. Lizzy Caplan was adorable in it but other than that it was not a great movie to me as I anticipated it to be. I love John Cusack but he is too old to be Lizzy Caplan's love interest in my opinion. Also, the jokes werent that cutting edge funny...
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Lewis P. (Turfseer) from NEW YORK, NY Reviewed on 10/26/2010...
Losers' transformation into self-actualized good guys appears undeserved
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Who would have ever thought that the 1980s was as distinctive as the 60s, a decade rife with possibilities for satire? Well, such films as 'The Wedding Singer' proved that the 80s can hold its own against other venerable decades. And now there's 'Hot Tub Time Machine', which also takes its own affectionate look at the era when both Ronald Reagan and Michael Jackson reigned supreme.
The protagonists of 'Hot Tub' are three losers from California who have remained occasional friends since their weekend at the Kodiak Ski Lodge in the winter of 1986: Adam (John Cusack), a hapless insurance salesman who's just been dumped by his girlfriend; Nick (Craig Robinson), who works at a dead-end job at a dog spa and can't get over the fact that his wife has been cheating on him and Lou (Rob Corrdry), a party animal way past his prime who can't hold a job. Also in the mix is Adam's geeky nephew Jacob (Clark Duke), who is also unemployed and spends most of his time playing video games.
The catalyst that brings the three friends back together again is Lou's hospitalization after being poisoned by carbon monoxide (later it's revealed that it actually was a suicide attempt). Concerned for their friend's mental health, Adam and Nick decide to treat Lou to a weekend at the same Ski Lodge they stayed at back in the 80s. With Jacob along for the ride, the three friends are propelled back to the 80s after relaxing in the hot tub on the patio deck of their hotel room.
'Hot Tub' is not without its fun moments. Perhaps the best joke in the entire movie is when the protagonists first become aware that they have traveled back in time. Nick questions a waitress as to "what color Michael Jackson is" and when she replies, "black", he runs out of the ski lodge screaming in terror! Another funny bit is when the trio look in the mirror, they constantly see themselves as they looked back in the 80s.
Two 80s acting icons are also part of the cast: Crispen Glover, famous for his role as George McFly in the 1986 hit 'Back to the Future' and Chevy Chase, mainly known for his role as 'Fletch' in the hit movie from the 80s of the same name. Of the two parts, Glover's is superior. He plays a bell hop who appears in the present with a severed arm. While back in the 80s, there are numerous amusing scenes where the expectation is that his arm will be cut off but he manages to somehow avoid the excision due to a series of lucky coincidences. When his arm is finally lopped off, all is made good in the present after we learn that the ski patrol packed the severed appendage in ice fast enough and rushed him to the hospital, where it was reattached. Chevy Chase has little opportunity to trot out his comic talents in the weaker role of the hot tub repairman who merely acts as an adviser to the time travelers, informing them that they must utilize the energy drink Chernobly to jump start the time machine which will propel them back to the present.
The bulk of the 'Hot Tub' plot involves the trio's decision not to upset the time-space continuum by sticking to the same script of their 80s foray. Adam's path is perhaps the funniest—he eventually must dump his girlfriend and allow himself to be stabbed in the eye by her. He accomplishes this by informing her that she'll eventually become overweight in her middle age. Adam does work out some positive karma by setting the stage for a romance with a journalist covering a Poison concert, which figures later in the film's denouement.
Nick overcomes his insecurities by coming to realize that he's still in love with his wife. He's conflicted at first, feeling guilty while having sex with a groupie but also jealous, eventually phoning his nine year old wife to be, berating her for having the future affair. Eventually he regains his confidence by expertly performing some 80s standards including 'Jessie's Girl' with his teenage band. Less funny is Lou's arc. There's an ugly scene where Lou loses a bet with miscreant with a gun at the ski lodge and almost is forced to perform oral sex on Nick. Eventually, Lou finds his mettle by punching out the leader of the ski patrol (their obsession with Communists would have worked better in a 50s satire but feels out of place here in the era of Perestroika). Jacob also solves the mystery of his parentage when he learns that Lou is actually his father (there's a rather obnoxious scene of 'coitus interruptus' where Jacob disappears after Lou temporarily stops having sex with Adam's sister).
In a nod to 'Back to the Future', the protagonist's lives are transformed as a result of Lou's decision to remain in 1986 and build a new life from there. Adam now is successfully married to the journalist and Nick is a record producer. I was disappointed in the protagonists' transformation. I wanted something more for Adam than simply his marriage to a 'good woman' . And Nick unnecessarily remains jealous of his wife for a short time, even after his new found success. Worst of all is Lou who remains the same obnoxious braggart as he was in the beginning of the film and that Lou's success is equated with material gain. What would have been better if Lou had been transformed into a millionaire, but also a philanthropist.
It's hard to recommend Hot Tub Time Machine. Yes, it's funny in spots but also can be crude. I know this is a comedy but somehow I felt that the protagonists simply didn't do enough to deserve their transformations from losers to self-actualized good guys.
1 of 4 member(s) found this review helpful.
You know what?
La Profesora | Big South | 04/02/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I really wanted to hate this movie. When my friend opted for this on "husband-has-the-kids-tonight" night, I mostly agreed just to use up a free ticket. Yes, it is crude, and it is lewd and it's totally socially unacceptable. Having said that, I laughed 'til my sides hurt. I've not laughed this hard since Blazing Saddles. It is that good. Don't take the kids, don't take the parents, don't take bosses or members of clergy - just go, laugh and feel free to revel in the silliness. A bit of warning - when they say 'Rated R' they're serious...strong language and sex."
You'll want to travel back in time to see it again! ***EARLY
Renfield | Edmonton, Canada | 03/12/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I first heard of this movie back in January of this year. I thought it sounded funny, but one I wouldn't pay to see in the theater. Then I saw the trailer, I thought it looked funny, and I decided "Eh, why not go see it? Should be good". Then my friend got an advance showing ticket and he invited me. I thought, "hey it's a free advance showing, go for it!" So I did. So anyways, that was a week ago today.
Tonight was the screening of the movie. And boy, did I love it or what! This is definitely a movie I would pay to go see again in the theater. From its stellar cast to its substantial amount of crude and gross humor, this is a film that is rude, crude, and unabashedly vulgar- and proud of it. And it's another roller-coaster comedy- the moment you think it'll get boring, it throws even bigger laughs your way. So in that sense, I can definitely say that I am glad I went. It was one hell of a hilarious comedy that kept me laughing.
After a stint that almost gets a person killed, his friends who are also unfortunately living rock bottom lives invite him to go on a road trip up to a snowy alpine town named Kodiak Valley, taking one's nephew. The town is practically desolate, and the hotel room is crappy. However, they find out their suite has a hot tub, and they get pretty trashed. Unknowingly, they knock over an energy drink and spill it on the panel.
The next morning, they wake up, but things aren't what they seem. For one, everyone's wearing fashion that was made big in the eighties. there's only one logical explanation: The hot tub was a time machine that transported them back to 1986!!!! However, since 3 of them are adults, they also discover they traveled to the day they went there for the Winterfest music festival with Poison headlining. So they decide to re-live the night they'll forever remember, while simultaneously trying to get back to 2010, ending up in several sticky situations along the way!
This was a fun movie for sure. It was totally odd yet hilarious. Tons of belly laughs, lots of WTF moments. Cusack sure didn't ruin his career with this one- he is very funny and he proved he can take on a rude and crude comedy very well. Crispin Glover has a small role here, and he really did the deed here too. But, the real star of the show here is someone I usually dislike- Rob Cordry. He stole the show greatly here. He was the real highlight here. He was consistently funny through and had me laughing so hard to the point I couldn't breathe.
However, I recommend that you do NOT let kids see this movie. The jokes, as I mentioned are rude and crude and extremely vulgar which almost push an NC-17 rating here. There's tons of sex jokes as well and couple ugly sex scenes that do nothing but add hilarity to the movie. The ending also takes a direction that most comedies nowadays don't. You expect the cliché comedy ending but you get something here that you are NOT expecting at all, so it gob-smacks you. I wasn't expecting it, and it made the experience even funnier for me.
In short, this was an amazing experience that is not for the squeamish and definitely not for the prudish. And I for sure will see it again when it gets released I will see it again for sure."
Flea | Nashville, TN | 03/29/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is just great. Like one of the previous reviewers said, it's half back to the future and half hangover. However I liked this movie much more than hangover. This movie isn't as raunchy as hangover was and to me it was even funnier. (don't get me wrong, there are plenty of raunchy if that's what you are looking for)
A brief synopsis. Three long time pals decide to take a vacation back to where they had a number of great experiences after one apparently tries to kill himself. Adam (john cusack) also brings his nephew who is obsessed with computer games and has not experienced the real world. Once they arrive, they find that the home of Winterfest 86 has seen better days. After all 4 pile into the hot tub and try to make the best of it they are transported back to winterfest 86. It is decided that they should all try to repeat exactly what happened so they don't screw the future up. However, after Adam fails to break up with his, then, girlfriend the other two pals decide to "right" the wrongs that they passed up while they nephew is frantically trying to get them back to the future. Shenanigans and fun times ensue providing a great movie.
I whole-heartedly suggest seeing this movie. It is not a family film but it is not a hang over."
A butchered DVD - a real shame
A. Camarota | Scottsdale, AZ | 07/11/2010
(1 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD was cut in a thousand places, almost totally deleting the subtle humor that was the mainstay of the movie as originally released. Changes like the elimination of the conversation where the friends decide to go to Kodiak Valley, substitution of a can of energy drink for a iPhone, and a different time travel sequence make this move a chopped up mess. The editors have destroyed both the continuity and integrity of the film. This is a real shame as the original release was actually very funny but the humor has been dumbed down on this DVD. I do not recommend this DVD at all, it is a waste of time. The original in the theater was fun, this DVD is just confusing and banal."
Is this Citizen Kane? No. It is a lot of fun? Yes.
Erik Bateson | California | 07/06/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Hot Tub Time Machine delivers on every level it aspires to. In a year with such alleged comedies as "The Bounty Hunter" and "When in Rome," this is a refreshingly funny film.
The plot is minimal. Three high school buddies (John Cusack, Rob Corddry, and Craig Robinson from "The Office") and John Cusack's nephew Jacob (Clark Duke) revisit the Kodiak Valley Ski Resort where they went in their high school days. After a wild night of drinking in a hot tub (involving the spillage of a can of an illegal Russian energy drink called "Chernobly," the guys wake up in 1986. Besides the predictable jokes about '80s fashion and cassette tapes, there are some nice touches, such as the bell boy of the hotel (in both present and '80s days) being played by Crispin Glover, George MyFly from Back to the Future, an '80s film and a film about time travel, as well. A running gag involving the possibility of him losing his arm is some of the funnier stuff I have seen in some time.
Is the film perfect? No. Chevy Chase is wasted in a brief cameo, and without sounding like too much of a prude, the humor is a little crude for my tastes. Still, in terms of recent comedies, viewers could do a lot worse.