A Time Travel Classic Is Big On Streaming – GIANT FREAKIN ROBOT

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Hot Tub Time Machine is currently top ten on HBO Max.

By Douglas Helm
| Published

If you’re in the mood for a time-traveling comedy, HBO Max has you covered. The underrated 2010 cult classic Hot Tub Time Machine is on the platform right now and subscribers are loving it. Currently, it’s in HBO Max’s top ten of the week.

Hot Tub Time Machine is a solid comedy with a goofy sci-fi premise and an extremely likable cast. The movie follows a man, his friends, and his nephew who get sent back to 1986 via a malfunctioning hot tub at a ski resort. To ensure the nephew is born, they have to make sure to relive a fateful night without changing anything.

Hot Tub Time Machine puts together a stacked cast of comedic talent, that includes John Cusack, Rob Corddry, Craig Robinson, Clark Duke, Sebastian Stan, Lyndsy Fonseca, Crispin Glover, Chevy Chase, and Lizzy Caplan. Steve Pink, who directed Cusack previously in films like Grosse Pointe Blank and High Fidelity, is in the director’s chair. The script was penned by Josh Heald, Sean Anders, and John Morris.

While Hot Tub Time Machine isn’t a critical darling by any means, plenty of people found the comedy enjoyable. It holds 64% from critics and 56% from audiences on Rotten Tomatoes, but that’s not necessarily a red flag to avoid the film. As with many comedies, your results may vary, but if you like the goofy comedies of the late 2000s, this should be right up your alley.

Hot Tub Time Machine also managed to do fairly well at the box office, raking in $50.2 million domestically and $14.4 million overseas for a total gross of $64.7 million. With a budget of $36 million, this was definitely enough for the studios to greenlight a sequel. Hot Tub Time Machine 2, however, did not fare as well as its predecessor.

Hot Tub Time Machine 2 can definitely be considered a box office bust, as the film only brought in $13 million worldwide against a $14 million budget. The Rotten Tomatoes score shows that it’s pretty hard to recommend, with 14% from critics and 26% from audiences. While Pink returned to direct and much of the cast returned, the missing element of John Cusack’s character may have contributed to the film’s failure.

While it seems unlikely that we’d ever get a Hot Tub Time Machine 3 after a bust like that, the original still holds up well. It’s disappointing that they couldn’t pull it off twice, but sometimes a franchise just isn’t in the cards for every movie out there. If they do decide to ever go for a threequel, they should definitely bring Cusack back for another round.

Although John Cusack did show up as a cameo in the unrated home release of Hot Tub Time Machine 2, it’s definitely not the same as having him as the main character. Cusack has stayed pretty busy since then. His latest project was a film called Pursuit which co-starred Emile Hirsch.

Unfortunately, Pursuit was panned even worse than Hot Tub Time Machine 2, with 11% from critics on Rotten Tomatoes. Hopefully, his next project will fare better. Cusack is set to star next in the comedy thriller My Only Sunshine about a pair of bank robbers planning a heist to help fund their divorce.

Perhaps My Only Sunshine will be more of a winner for Cusack as he returns to a more comedic role. There’s no release date yet for My Only Sunshine, but JK Simmons is set to co-star and Mark Palansky is directing. The screenplay is penned by J.T. Petty and Kate Petty.

The rest of the Hot Tub Time Machine main cast has been staying pretty busy too. Craig Robinson recently starred in his own Peacock TV series Killing It. Rob Corddry has an upcoming movie called The Donor Party set for a 2023 release that co-stars Malin Akerman, Erinn Hayes, Bria Henderson, and more. Clark Duke was most recently in the animated Netflix series Inside Job which also featured the voice talents of Lizzy Caplan, Christian Slater, Tisha Campbell, Andy Daly, Brett Gelman, Chris Diamantopoulos, John DiMaggio, and Bobby Lee.

If you’re in the mood for a fun comedy that doesn’t take itself too seriously, Hot Tub Time Machine is definitely worth the watch. It likely won’t blow your mind but it could be an enjoyable way to end the weekend. You can stream it now on HBO Max or Hulu.


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