Now, I fervently believe that bodily fluids are to d**kflicks what designer clothes and shoes are to chickflicks. But Rob Corddry, the onetime Daily Show correspondent, believes , "bodily fluids are to d**kflicks what bodily fluids are to chickflicks. "It's all about saliva, isn't it?" asks the co-star of Hot Tub Time Machine, a melding of The Hangover and Back to the Future.
Co-starring with John Cusack and Craig Robinson, Corddry fountains so many body fluids in the grossout comedy that it virtually guarantees him the status of this year's Zach Galifianakis, that motormouth movie boor who makes you laugh uncontrollably. (For those keeping tabs, Galifianakis of Hangover fame was last year's Vince Vaughan.)
In Hot Tub (great title!), a trio of sadsack forty-four year olds and Cusack's 23-year-old nephew (Clark Duke) are zapped back to 1986, the era of mullets, mohawks and big, big shoulderpads. Are the 1980s inherently funny? Or is it that that 1980s, like the 1950s, enjoyed relative prosperity, enabling citizens to indulge in extreme fashion and extreme novelty? Corddry, speaking by phone from the closet of his New York hotel room (don't ask), demurs. "I have to believe all decades are intrinsically funny: The inherent silliness of the '90s is beginning to be, with all the flannels and hip-hop fashion. They're beginning to look funny to us now."
As Lou, the Hot Tub character who begins with a suicide attempt and end with a personal renaissance, Corddry, the bullet-headed guy with the barely-there hair, steals the show from Cusack and Robinson in the most flagrant piece of movie shoplifting since Michael Keaton slipped Night Shift from under the feet of Henry Winkler.
There is a long history of this kind of manic scene-stealing. As Keaton eclipsed Winkler, that master underplayer, so Vaughan did Owen Wilson in Wedding Crashers, Christopher Mintz-Plasse to Jonah Hill and Michael Cera in Superbad and Galifianakis to Bradley Cooper and Ed Helms in The Hangover.
Can you think of other examples of the cinematic garnish overwhelming the entree? And why does it make us laugh so hard?