Hot Tub Time Machine
• Actors: John Cusack, Rob Corddry, Craig Robinson, Clark Duke, Chevy Chase • Directors: Steve Pink • Number of discs: 1 • Rated: Unrated • Run Time: 99 minutes
Get ready to kick some serious past with the wildly inappropriate unrated version of Hot Tub Time Machine. The outrageous laughs bubble up when four friends share a crazy night of drinking in a ski resort hot tub, only to wake up with serious hangovers in 1986 – back when girls wore leg warmers, guys watched Red Dawn and Michael Jackson was black! Now, nice-guy Adam (John Cusack), party animal Lou (Rob Corddry), married man Nick (Craig Robinson) and mega-nerd Jacob (Clark Duke) must relive a wild night of sex, drugs and rock-n-roll and try to change their future – forever!
Hot Tub Time Machine hits the bull's-eye: it's a rude, crude comedy with enough smarts and emotional sweetness to make it completely entertaining. Seeking to bring some youthful optimism back to their failed, miserable lives, three middle-aged guys--Adam (John Cusack), Nick (Craig Robinson), and Lou (Rob Corddry)--go to a mountain resort where they spent some of their wildest days (reluctantly dragging along Adam's nephew, Jacob, played by newcomer Clark Duke). A drunken accident in the titular hot tub sends them swirling back to 1986, where each of them decides to risk changing the future (and possibly erasing Jacob from existence) by doing things just a little differently. A plot summary doesn't capture the movie's rambunctious, daffy spirit as much as… well, the ridiculous title: this is a movie called Hot Tub Time Machine! Any expectation you may have will be met and surpassed. John Cusack delivers another underplayed yet marvelously funny performance, his best since High Fidelity; Clark Duke, from the TV show Greek, proves a promising young comic talent. But the movie really belongs to Robinson and Corddry, who've been floating around the edges of tons of comedies--some have been good, some have been bad, but they've both been consistently funny even in crappy movies. Hot Tub Time Machine gives them center stage and lets them reveal the comic chaos they can deliver. It helps, but is not necessary, to have lived through the '80s to find Hot Tub Time Machine exquisitely silly. --Bret Fetzer