Hot Tub Time Machine 2 – 1 out of 5
I actually really enjoy the first Hot Tub Time Machine and, even though I felt one plunge into the comedic/time travelling waters was enough, a sequel was mysteriously produced. I found myself watching the trailer and not being fully sold on it but saying, "Yeah, sure, I’ll give it a shot." Sadly, the only reaction I had after watching the film was an insane desire to create my own hot tub that travels through time…for no other reason than to convince my past self to not watch Hot Tub Time Machine 2.
|Prepare yourself for a bunch of party montages...that each go way too long.|
|That don't look that strange...they could easily pass for a band that would play|
an outdoor festival full of dirty hippies.
In the first film, Rob Corddry was riding the line of being annoying and being funny and he rode it quite well because he was balanced out by the other players. This time, however, without Adam to be the balancing agent that prevents Lou from taking over the script and story, we are left with a dose of Lou that isn't diluted and the end result is a non-stop barrage of dick jokes and segments where the guys do insult lines that begin with "You look like a…" and then fill in the blanks. It wear thins quickly and makes the film über-repetitive. Sure, they even do a self-referencing joke about how this formula is wearing thin and they are doing it too much but, by then, the joke itself is already a beaten beyond belief dead horse. Things only get more recycled and done ad nauseam when you see the script loves comparing its story to other, more popular, films. This isn’t a bad thing if kept under control but every 5 minutes the film feels like it needs to remind you that you are wasting your time with a shitty comedy and are missing out on more iconic, and better produced, films.
|He looks hypnotized--Wait! Hypnotism. That's how this film was made and released.|
|Seriously, you need to be watching Silicon Valley. Stop everything, even reading this|
review, and go and binge on the show and get caught up. I'll wait...
However, as unfunny as the film is, it didn’t start that way. When the movie began, it did throw out some great self-referencing material and seemed like it could have been another silly jaunt through time…but, as the film progresses, the film starts to repeat itself too often, relies too much on pointless party montages and, too many times, forgets its story about finding Lou’s killer and goes off on tangents that make it feel like the film was actually a short film and pointless filler was added to get it to a running feature length.
|Yay! Another party montage with alcohol and drugs...|
As far as performances go, no one is really giving off a bad one. Lou may be annoying but that’s not because Rob Corddry is bad at playing him, it’s because the character is, deep down, an unlikable asshole (which, in a sense, means Corddry is actually giving off a great performance because he really, really makes Lou out to be a terrible character that is impossible to enjoy…unless, you are a guy like Lou. If that’s the case, you probably love him). The problem is that the comedy is so bottom-of-the-barrel that, even if there was an epic performance hidden within this films gruff exterior, it wouldn’t do much to save it. Showing a little constraint with Lou’s scene might have been the first thing to go for to help save the film and, ultimately, helped the overall presentation but the way scenes go way, WAAAYYY too long shows that there was no interest in keeping the character of Lou under control.
|He's like one of those children you have to keep on a leash.|
The only thing this film does effectively is make the first one stronger by comparison and act as a reminder of how important John Cusack was to that film (of course, if you watch the unrated cut of the film you find out PLOT POINT DELETED FOR THE SAKE OF SPOILERS). Hot Tub Time Machine 2 had the potential to be a completely unnecessary but potentially mildly amusing sequel to a mildly amusing silly film. Hell, the film actually starts quite well as it delivers some decent meta gags that pokes fun at itself and its pointless nature of existence but soon, not long after the dick shot, it all goes downhill. Ultimately, the final product feels so haphazardly slapped together with never ending repetitive jokes and unlikable characters that it feels like its sole reason for existing was just to provide work to the cast and crew.