Let’s Get Reel: Hot Tub Time Machine 2

I went to see the premeire of Hot Tub Time Machine 2, that is how excited I was to see this movie. I really shouldn’t have been. This movie has flashes of utter brilliance and flashes of utter crap in between long stretches of mediocrity.

So the basic gist of this movie is three friends who’ve used the titular device to basically invent all the wonders of the modern world in the 80s have to go to the future to prevent an assailant from going back to the past to “shoot and kill Lou in the ****” Problem: Lou is the single most repugnant, horrible human being I’ve ever seen portrayed on film. Ever, and I’ve seen Hitler portrayed. He is genetically engineered to be the worst person imaginable and you spend most of the film questioning why his friends even wanna save him. Hell even his friends question why they wanna help him because he’s so horrible. The movie tries to half-*** some sort of moral message to show he learned a lesson but immediately undermines it for what is honestly a pretty entertaining ending sequence. In fact this movie only works when the trio is palling around, the plot and anything plot-related is either bad or boring, but the repartee between Lou (Rob Corddry) Nick (Craig Robinson) and Jacob (Clark Duke) is actually entertaining. Had the movie just been the three of them travelling through time and giving each other **** I would have been happy. Alas we had to have a plot. It’s quite the shame.

When those three are just talking it’s magic. When they engage in typical comedy cliches like “The drug trip” I am either bored or cringing. It’s such an uneven film. The heartfelt stuff doesn’t work, the usualy comedy stuff is dull and trite, but the writing is actually tight sometimes. Specifically when it comes to making references to other films. Now normally I’m not into “references as jokes” but the film plays into that and oddly enough the references both make sense and are funny.

It’s just such a shame it still relies so heavily on the usual plotlines. In a post-21 Jumpstreet world the same old routine just doesn’t cut it anymore. Everyone needs to step up their game. I’d expect the kind of bare bones “Uh Oh! I’m late for my wedding” “I dance silly” “I’m a jerk” plots Hot Tub Time Machine 2 uses in an Adam Sandler movie, but that’s because his movies have been terrible for well over a decade and I don’t expect better from them. But this was just boring.

Overall Hot Tub Time Machine 2 has flashes of brilliance in character interaction but suffers from a tedious plot that often veers into awful comedy. If you really liked the first one I’d say wait untill it’s on Netflix this summer.

Final Verdict: Banished to the Netflix Queue