Hot Tub Time Machine

hot-tub-time-machine-th.jpg John Cusack, who will soon be joining us here at Boing Boing as a guestblogger, has a new movie out tomorrow, Friday March 26: Hot Tub Time Machine.

Ebert likes it, and that's about all I need to know. Those of you, both men and women, who are old enough to have enjoyed "electroclash" back when it was called "new wave" and came out on vinyl will likely find much to enjoy. It's sort Hangover meets H.G. Wells meets 80s nostalgia, meets a dude in a bear suit and sex jokes.

Cusack, as Ebert writes in his review, pretty much rules in everything—even goofy escapist fare such as this. As the Village Voice headline aptly explains, "The Delorean's a jacuzzi and the 80s are back." Snip from a Chicago Sun-Times interview:

Q. With a name like "Hot Tub Time Machine," you have a lot to live up to.
Cusack: I sort of thought it was the other way around. If you have a title like "Hot Tub Time Machine," that's a stupid title. Maybe people are going to think the people who made it have lost their mind completely. When they go in and see it, they're going to be so pleasantly surprised ... [Laughs] It's pretty hard for people to say "Hot Tub Time Machine" does not live up to the artistic expectations we had.

Q: Why did you decide to produce this movie?
Cusack: Grace [Loh, his production partner] and I thought this would be ... very smart, post-modern and very dumb. Post-modern in the way that you have a movie within a movie. You have actors who were in these '80s movies going back to movies that, it's almost like Crispin [Glover] and I and Chevy [Chase] kind of being trapped into a version of film youth. We thought that mixture could be a pretty fun ride for a comedy if you get it right.

Boing Boing readers and internet continuity extremists will note that the comedy contains a few elements of historical fudging with regard to when the internet and email were invented, and by whom. And that is why FSM invented comment threads, my children.

Hot Tub Time Machine.



  1. Saw this movie at a free screening a few weeks ago, it was fantastic! The jokes are great, and don’t feel like the same recycled jokes from other 80’s nostalgia movies.

  2. “that’s a stupid title…. When they go in and see it, they’re going to be so pleasantly surprised …”

    No. The title and the marketing are going to turn people completely away from going to see it, period. Life is too short to watch movies that look like they’re going to be galactically stupid. Even if we have an actor’s word that it’s not.

    1. I disagree. I think the title is the single greatest movie title I have ever heard. It sounds like it would be the title of some awesomely funny and witty sci-fi movie…but then I watched the previews and realized that it was this. What a waste.

    2. I’m submitting “Snakes on a Plane” as evidence that you don’t know jack. Also, “Star Wars” is a pretty dumb title when you think about it.

    3. Gotta disagree entirely. Not only are genuinely dumb comedies (like Scary Movie 3, Date Movie, etc) profitable, but smart comedies disguised as dumb comedies (like The Hangover) are massively popular. And a movie with a title like HOT TUB TIME MACHINE that makes people giggle just by saying it has automatic word-of-mouth. That, backed up with a lot of positive reviews, tells me it’ll do well. Oh, and there’s 80s nostalgia working for it, too.

    4. No. The title and the marketing are going to turn people completely away from going to see it, period.

      Right, just like the title/mktg did for that other movie. Oh, what was it called…? I just know there had to have been one, once.

  3. I plan to see it if they will run it at a decent time in my town. Right now its scheduled for 12:01 a.m., which will work for the younger set, but I need my beauty sleep. I like the title. I think it’ll be funny, and I like to be entertained at the movies. The 80’s were when I made most of my best mistakes.

  4. I don’t know why it is, but I think if John Cusack’s name wasn’t tied to this film, that title would be a hell of a lot less appealing.

  5. I’m still really confused as to why the title shown at 1:19 in the trailer has a shadow that doesn’t match the text, check it out.

    1. “Hot Tub” and “Time Machine” are not in the same plane…
      Hot Tub is in the foreground.. which places it’s shadow in the foreground… at least that’s the response the graphic artist would give to cover his ass.

  6. I usually wait to see stuff like this “on vhs” but like The Hangover, I’ll see this when it comes out.

    I suppose I fit the target demo perfectly, but I’m surprised so many people think this would flop.

  7. I’ll be waiting for a spinny-disc release for this movie. If it sucks then I’ll run after John Cusack, screaming “I WANT MY TWO DOLLARS!!”

  8. The title is funny. The movie looks fun. It will make a ton of money. I am shot out of a cannon to see if Friday. In other point of view leaves you a freak on the nether edge of society …

  9. Electroclash ≠ New Wave. And it comes out on vinyl – I haven’t bought a new CD since the early 2000s, and I buy at least one new record a month. Usually more!

    But I get what you mean. I’m just in a nitpicky mood. Apologies!

    1. @elliot winner (#12) — i’m willing to bet you weren’t a teenager when new wave was new. yes, electroclash very much IS new wave.

      and john cusack is going to be blogging here? i eagerly await his every keystroke…

  10. Boing Boing readers and internet continuity extremists will note that the comedy contains a few elements of historical fudging with regard to when the internet and email were invented, and by whom. And that is why FSM invented comment threads, my children.

    They cut out Al Gore?
    Son, I am disappoint.

  11. the movie title is awesome. yeah it looks stupid but, it’s a comedy. get a sense of humor people

  12. Can’t tell from the preview if I’ll like it or not, but I sure want to.

    If it’s really good, it’ll be good the way 40 year old virgin was good. Dumb characters and dumb setups played insanely smart. Here’s hoping.

  13. Back to the Future went from ’85 to ’55. This movie goes from ’10 to the 80’s. It seems like if you’re going to make a back in time comedy ~3 decades is the target. Maybe in 2035 we’ll get a new one making fun of ipods or twitter or something.

  14. I was a sophomore in high school in 1986. I’ve seen Better Off Dead and One Crazy Summer each more times than I have seen the orig. Star Wars trilogy films combined. I think the movie looks hilarious, but not nearly as hilarious as the “shame on you, Mr. Cusak, shame on you” crowd. You people are fucking hysterical.

  15. I’m just glad that this doesn’t seem to be one of those “current-generation-slamming-the-parents’-generation” sort of things; actually looks like it may get a giggle here and there. About Ebert’s unwavering adulation of Cusack movies: didn’t he slam Serendipity? (which I personally enjoy, if mainly for John Corbett’s turn channelling every known New Age musician as Lars).

  16. I’ll see it, eventually, because it has Clark Duke (and yeah, John Cusack.) Trailer looked dumb. But I won’t be standing in line to see it opening night, like I will for Kick-Ass, April 16th.

  17. Indy films and documentaries are great but sometimes it’s nice to watch a movie that requires nothing but the ability to watch and laugh. Films like “Dumb and Dumber” serve a purpose in that sense. I’m sure “Hot Tub Time Machine” will do well at the box office.

  18. Sorry, that last comment didn’t make any sense. What I meant was…that’s frickin’ awesome news!

  19. Cusack is acting AND producing?
    I’m in!

    I give anything he puts some soul into a chance. And haven’t been disappointed yet.
    My biggest complaint (before seeing the movie) is: why isn’t Joan (Cusack) in it? She’s absolute magic, methinks. Her characters in both Grosse Point Blank and War Inc. were icing on those cakes, IMHO.

    And as for quirky stuff (pjk #27, I’m looking at you) I think John Cusack might count, random interests and doesn’t follow the beaten path? check!

  20. I can’t wait to see this movie. Craig Robinson, Rob Cordry AND Cusak?? I mean, John still owes me an apology for 2012, but I guess I can let that go based on Better Off Dead.

    I also think the title of the movie is perfectly awesome. And the way they break the fourth wall and deliberately state the name of the movie in the movie(as seen in the original trailer)is a truly creative joke. The look on Craig Robinson’s face is priceless.

  21. I wonder…will you have some way of showing that the REAL john cusack is posting comments here (if he does) in case ppl pretend to be him?

    High Fidelity is my favourite movie.

    1. John’s a pretty down-to-earth guy and is likely to want to engage directly, AND we have moderators who kill fake-o impersonators. So, no, we won’t allow pretend-Cusacks to muddy the waters here.

  22. I was thinking “hey, Cusack is starting to show his age”, then I saw Chevy! Tempus fugit like a mo’fo’.

  23. After half a lifetime watching god knows how many movies I have come to a point where I don’t go see a movie anymore because of the title.
    Neither will I go see a movie because the trailer looks cool or whatever. (Or what the main cast, producer or director has to say about it.)
    Trailers are still useful to figure out what to definitely avoid though. Can’t say I’m waiting to see this one, but obviously that’s a matter of taste.

    It’s not just that I start feeling that I’m wasting my time; it’s that I am literally annoyed (amongst other bad feelings) when watching some of the stuff Hollywood cranks out these days.

    It’s a comedy. Comedies are usually dumb. What matters is if they are funny.

    Indeed, two things they usually get right. (Being dumb and unfunny.)

  24. I went to see the movie last night for free, it was worth the price. It started out slow and stupid and got funnier towards the end. The thing that really bothered me is the movie starts and ends in 2010, the youngest character is 20 they travel back aprox 20 years to the year 1086?????? That’s 24 years can Hollywood add or in this case subtract???

  25. I’d suggest actually watching the movie before declaring it to be “garbage” or not a “proper movie”. Just a thought.

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