Hot tubs are awesome. Time machines are even better. Sadly, when you smash the two together in movie form, you get the season’s shoddy answer to The Hangover. Like last year’s frat boy fest, Hot Tub Time Machine features unhappy dudes off on a weekend adventure to recapture lost youth — the good ol’ times, before receding hairlines, Viagra and Twitter.
John Cusack (Adam), Clark Duke (Jacob), Craig Robinson (Nick) and Rob Corrdry (Lou) star as our time-traveling Peter Pans. As usual, Crispin Glover plays the weirdo while Chevy Chase disappoints as the mystical hot tub repair guy. Just 20 minutes in, the schlubs are drunk, naked and soaking in one another’s filth. A few minutes after that, they’re transported back to ’86. Will they repeat the past or change their destinies? No, it doesn’t really matter.
While the dudes navigate the "me" era, the film reveals their characters, except Jacob. His main service is to provide Internet jokes. Cusack’s decent, and a good choice as the responsible straight man, but overall, HTTM is one big missed opportunity. With all those 80s stars in the mix, it could’ve been more than an excuse for predictable Google jokes.
Though the gags are obvious and the laughs are cheap, people will love it. As with The Hangover, they’ll actually pay money to see it. The nostalgia of the Gen X generation alone — how they cling to youth, even though they’re officially middle aged — will be enough to make this a hit.
Hot Tub Time Machine opens nationwide on March 26. Click here for all the information.