CATEGORIES Reviews
If you could transport yourself anywhere in a time machine, what time and place would you choose? We're guessing you'd avoid the "Where's the Beef" '80s. But in a new movie opening Friday, a group of middle-aged slackers are sent back to their misspent youth as they're soaked by a time machine with a mind of its own.

... a 'Hot Tub Time Machine.'

John Cusack is above the title as lovelorn Adam; Craig Robinson and Rob Corddry co-star as his best friends. 'HTTM's' story begins with the buddies heading out to a dumpy, but unexpectedly mystical, ski lodge.

In his long career, Cusack has delivered, in films both sophisticated and sophomoric (check out Roger Ebert's full 'Hot Tub' review -- linked below -- in which he claims there's not one stinker among the over four dozen Cusack films he's seen). It is rare when a movie's title gets you laughing (us, anyway). Hopes are high for 'Hot Tub.'

Among those who've caught early screenings, praise is bubbling over for the actors, especially ex-'Daily Show' correspondent Corddry. Let's look deeper into the 'Hot Tub' critical reaction. If you could transport yourself anywhere in a time machine, what time and place would you choose? We're guessing you'd avoid the "Where's the Beef" '80s. But in a new movie opening Friday, a group of middle-aged slackers are sent back to their misspent youth as they're soaked by a time machine with a mind of its own.

... a 'Hot Tub Time Machine.'

John Cusack is above the title as lovelorn Adam; Craig Robinson and Rob Corddry co-star as his best friends. 'HTTM's' story begins with the buddies heading out to a dumpy, but unexpectedly mystical, ski lodge.

In his long career, Cusack has delivered, in films both sophisticated and sophomoric (check out Roger Ebert's full 'Hot Tub' review -- linked below -- in which he claims there's not one stinker among the over four dozen Cusack films he's seen). It is rare when a movie's title gets you laughing (us, anyway). Hopes are high for 'Hot Tub.'

Among those who've caught early screenings, praise is bubbling over for the actors, especially ex-'Daily Show' correspondent Corddry. Let's look deeper into the 'Hot Tub' critical reaction:

Roger Ebert: "[H]ow good can a movie named 'Hot Tub Time Machine' possibly be? Yes? That's not what I thought. I saw the stand-up display in a movie lobby and perked up. With a title like that, the filmmakers aren't lacking in confidence. There was also the item of John Cusack in the lead. As a general rule, he isn't found in bad films. [ ... ] I wasn't disappointed."

The Hollywood Reporter
: "The film stars John Cusack and was written and directed by Steve Pink, who as co-writer and co-producer of 'High Fidelity' and 'Grosse Pointe Blank' was intimately involved in two of Cusack's better movies. But instead of going for the sophisticated wit of those two films, Cusack (acting as producer here as well) and Pink aim young and down-market."

'Hot Tub Time Machine' trailer

'Hot Tub Time Machine' showtimes and tickets

Associated Press: "Well, 'Hot Tub Time Machine' pretty much is as dumb as it sounds, its goofy but potentially clever concept landing closer to the moronic monotony of 'Dude, Where's My Car?' than the inspired idiocy of 'Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure.'"

Time Out New York: "A genre icon second only to Her Ringwaldness, John Cusack's presence in this extended memory-lane riff provides an affectionate edge to a plot that's pure '80s cinema illogic. After his middle-aged sad sack and some loser buddies (Corddry, Robinson) spill an energy drink in a ski-lodge hot tub, they wake up in 1986. Hair will be poufy, fashions will be neon and geometric, and safety dances will be danced. In an ideal world, theaters would hand out Bartles & Jaymes and show this on a battered Betamax tape."

The Arizona Republic
: "[Rob] Corddry brings real ugliness to [his] role, which is not always a comfortable fit among the sex jokes. He's an alcoholic, depressed and angry. Of course, Corddry, a veteran of 'The Daily Show,' among others, also is really funny. That helps a lot."