Hot Tub Time Machine 2

Released in February huh? Who knew.
"The laws of space and time are about to be violated"

And that is not the only thing. Hello friends and welcome back to the Tagline! Today I'm going to be talking about the not at all anticipated Hot Tub Time Machine 2, the sequel to the surprisingly not shitty Hot Tub Time Machine. For those not familiar, the original focused on a group of 3 friends (and also Clark Duke) who go to a ski resort they once frequented back in their youth, and end up going back in time to the 80s (using a hot tub obviously). The film worked very well because in addition to being quite funny, it was the perfect parody of 80s era romantic comedies, not to mention that they had John Cusack along for the ride, and he appeared in more than a couple of the movies being played off of here. The second film picks up where the first left off. Lou (Rob Corddry)has made himself insanely wealthy by stealing the ideas for a whole bunch of shit that didn't exist in the 80s, while Nick (Craig Robinson) has built a successful music career by stealing other musicians songs. Meanwhile I don't know what Adam (John Cusack) has been doing, because he is notably absent from this movie (although he has a brief cameo at the end). 

The hot tub in question.
So if they went to the past in the first movie, obviously in the second movie they go to the future. After Lou gets shotgunned in the dick, Nick and Jacob (Clark Duke who we now know is Lou's son, and also apparently his butler) take him to the hot tub and attempt to travel back in time to stop his death from happening. They instead end up in the future, in a divergent time line where Lou was alive, but where something happened to cause his death. This is easy to imagine, because Lou is a massive asshole. In the future, they meet Adams son, also Adam (played by Adam Scott, so it's Adam cubed). Needing to find Lou's killer, they drag Adam along and get into all sorts of predictably fucked up shit. I say predictable because the movie pretty much proceeds exactly as you would expect. It is still funny, don't get me wrong, but it is definitely paint by the numbers.

Look at this nerd.
This really makes it different than its predecessor, which was as crude but more intelligent and also had the benefit of being unexpected. HTTM the first was a movie I had zero expectations for, but which ended up being hilarious, as well as being a brilliant parody (Crispin Glover as the bellhop, I mean come on). It took a stupid premise and did something surprising and entertaining with it, and stood on its own merits. In comparison, Hot Tub Time Machine 2 relies heavily on the original not just for its legitimacy, but also for its plot in general. While the movie is definitely simple enough in terms of plot that you could determine what was happening whether you'd seen the first movie or not, most of the jokes that made the movie entertaining, and details that made up the best parts of this movie were callbacks to the first movie. Without that background, most of the best gags of the movie would fall rather flat.

A butler in a top hat no less.
While this was amusing from a Back to the Future 2 kind of perspective, HTTM 2 is just an inferior movie in every way when compared to the first. It's still funny, especially if you've seen the first (and really you SHOULD see the first) but it has little to compare it favorably. This movie knows where its limited strength lies, and it plays to them almost exclusively. The fact that this film relies so heavily on its predecessor doesn't make it a bad movie, but it does make it weaker overall. If you liked the first, than I can honestly recommend it, it isn't the terrible film that reviews painted it as. Unfortunately it also isn't Hot Tub Time Machine.

Now I know that this seemed like a gross and stupid movie, but I promise next week you'll think it seems pretty smart when I review fucking Wolf Cop.

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