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Top 12 Hot Tub Films

Things Heat Up When a Hot Tub is in the Scene


We've looked at the films that have memorable swimming pool scenes. But what about the pool's steamier cousin, the hot tub? A mere glimpse of a hot tub on screen suggests something has or will happen, and it's usually not a scene with grandpa soaking his bunions in the hot water (yikes!). I've polled friends and colleagues for suggestions-- the following is a list of films from a broad range of years with favorite or memorable hot tub scenes.

If you have one you'd like to add to the list, let us know!

1. About Schmidt

about schmidt best hot tub films
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Year: 2002
Director: Alexander Payne (The Descendants
Writers: Louis Begley, Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor
Cast: Jack Nicholson, Kathy Bates, Hope Davis, Dylan McDermott.

Jack Nicholson won a Best Actor Oscar for his portrayal of a widower who tries to reconnect with his adult daughter and discovers himself while traveling in his RV.

Hot Tub Scene: Schmidt (Nicholson) gets a kink in his shoulder while visiting the home of his daughter's future mother-in-law (Bates). She encourages him to relax his tense neck muscles in the hot tub. The heat is starting to help Schmidt's sore neck and help him unwind until Bates joins him in the hot tub -- and disrobes. Appalled, he quickly makes excuses and exits -- terrified and tense again.

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2. Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

austin powers
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Year: 1997
Director: Jay Roach
Writer: Mike Myers
Cast: Mike Myers, Elizabeth Hurley, Will Farrell, Michael York, Seth Green, Robert Wagner and Mimi Rogers.

The first of the Austin Powers trilogy, with Mike Myers as the man of mystery. Swinging '60s secret agent Austin Powers is "unthawed" to help oppose his greatest enemy, Dr. Evil, into the 1990s.

Hot Tub Scene:In a spoof on the James Bond film, You Only Live Twice, Austin (Myers) is soaking in a wood hot tub when he is joined by Alotta (Fabiana Udenio) and forgets his hot tub etiquette.

Alotta: "How dare you break wind before me!"
Austin: "Sorry baby. I didn't know it was your turn!"

3. Boogie Nights

mark wahlberg movie
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Year: 1997
Director and writer: Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Julianne Moore, John C. Reilly, Heather Graham, Burt Reynolds, Luis Guzman, Don Cheadle, William H. Macy and Phillip Seymour Hoffman.

It's 1976, right in the midst of the Golden Age of Porn, a period from the late 1960s to the early-to-mid 1980s. Young Eddie (Wahlberg) works at a San Fernando Valley nightclub, where he is discovered by a porn filmmaker. The film follows Eddie as he enters the world of the Valley's porn industry and the various characters he becomes involved with as his career takes off.

Not surprisingly, this behind-the-scenes dramatization of the San Fernando Valley's porn industry had several pool scenes. But it's a pivotal hot tub scene at the beginning of Eddie's career in which he comes up with his unforgettable screen name, Dirk Diggler.

4. Charlie Wilson's War

charlie wilson
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Year: 2007
Director: Mike Nichols
Writers: Aaron Sorkin and George Crile
Cast: Ton Hanks, Julia Roberts, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams and Ned Beatty.

Hard-drinking Texas playboy congressman (Hanks) tries to get funding for antiaircraft weapons so that Afghani rebels can defeat their Soviet invaders. This was back in the 1980s, before the Mujahideen had flowed into the Taliban and backed Osama bin Laden's war against the U.S.

Hot Tub Scene: Not scene so much as scenes; the playboy congressman entertains a bevy of beauties in a shiny black and gold-tiled hot tub on several occasions, sometimes while watching world events unfold on the playroom TV. It's decadent and very '80s. A far cry from today, at least for those of us who don't live in an elite bubble.

5. Ferris Bueller's Day Off

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Year: 1986
Writer / Director: John Hughes
Cast: Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara, Jeffrey Jones, Jennifer Grey, Charlie Sheen and Ben Stein.

Clever Ferris Bueller (Broderick) decides he needs a break from school, so he invents an excuse, then takes his best friend and girlfriend along with him on his adventurous day off.

Hot Tub Scene: Ferris and his girlfriend, Sloane (Sara), are relaxing and having a conversation in the hot tub while their friend, Cameron, has snorkeling issues in the adjacent swimming pool.

6. The Heartbreak Kid

heartbreak kid
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Year: 2007
Directors: Bobby and Peter Farrelly
Writers: Scot Armstrong, Leslie Dixon, Kevin Barnett and the Farrelly brothers.
Cast: Ben Stiller, Malin Akerman, Michelle Monaghan, Jerry Stiller, Rob Corddry.

At 40, Eddie (Ben Stiller) feels the pressure to get married, and so he takes the plunge with lovely Lila (Akerman) after knowing her for only six weeks. Her true colors are revealed during their Meyurn.

Hot Tub Scene: Eddie's dad (played by Ben's real-life father, Jerry Stiller) is in a Vegas hot tub with a well-endowed woman who "floats" in the hot tub. Kind of a sight gag -- you have to see it.

7. Hot Tub Time Machine

hot tub time machine
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Year: 2010
Director: Steve Pink
Writers: Josh Heald, Sean Anders and John Morris Cast: John Cusack, Chevy Chase, Rob Corddry, Clark Duke, Criag Robinson, Crispin Glover and Jessica Pare.

In a nutshell, four guys take a male-bonding vacation to a local ski resort they used to visit in their younger days.

Hot Tub Scene: With a title like Hot Tub Time Machine...gee -- which one? Let's just go for the first one, in which the four buddies are bonding in a hot tub at a ski resort, a guy in a bear costume (or is it a real bear?) joins them, things start spinning around, fireworks, geysers and other cheesey special effects occur, and a film is born. The guys are transported back in time to 1986 (the '80s, yet again). And Rob Corddry is in yet another hot tub film (See The Heartbreak Kid).

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8. Lion King 1-1/2

lion king
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Year: 2004
Studio: Disney
Cast: Don't forget, it's animated. But voice-overs were provided by Matthew Broderick (I'm seeing a connection here), Jeremy Irons, James Earl Jones, Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Moira Kelly, Nathan Lane, Rowan Atkinson, Robert Guillaume, Madge Sinclair, Whoopi Goldberg and Cheech Marin.

This was the third Lion King film and the prequel / parallel. Like the sequel, it was a direct-to-video production. In this film, we learn how Timon and Pumbaa met each other, and see what the characters did during the events of the first film.

Hot Tub Scene:Simba, Timon and Pumbaa are relaxing in a kind of natural pool / hot tub. To say more would spoil it, so watch it yourself!

9. Middle Age Crazy

middle age crazy hot tub films
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Year: 1980
Director: John Trent
Writers: Carl Kleinschmitt and Jerry Lee Lewis (yes, that Jerry Lee Lewis)
Cast: Bruce Dern, Ann-Margaret

If you can find a copy of this film, which apparently is only available on VHS, it's supposed to be a humorously revealing look (for the 1980s) at middle-age crises. Bruce Dern is the crazy middle-aged man questioning his existence as he turns 40 -- which, by today's standards, is the new 30. Made in 1980 (which really means the late 1970s), it is undeniably dated, but apparently still quite entertaining, and will resonate with those hitting middle-age -- 55 or so by 21st century standards.

Hot Tub Scene: Hot tubs were at their height of hipness -- look at the cover of the video. Fully clothed, middle-aged crazy love in a hot tub.

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10. Tequila Sunrise

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Year: 1988
Director and writer: Robert Towne (Chinatown
Cast: Mel Gibson (when he was young and presumably less hot-headed), Michelle Pfeiffer, Kurt Russell, Raul Julia.

This is one of those stylish -- dare I say "classy" -- films from the 1980s that had star power, beautiful locales (coastal Southern California) nice threads, cool pads, drugs and dealers, detectives, adventure, mystery and a soundtrack that included tunes by Crowded House and Duran Duran. An '80s dream.

Hot Tub Scene: Michelle has shed her shoulder pads and is enjoying an intimate evening with Mel -- she looks alluring in nothing but a pair of thick gold hoop earrings. As '80s dates go, the couple inevitably ends up in the hot tub. The camera angle is low, steam rises, and without warning, the twosome burst from the center of the tub in slow motion passion like a breaching orca in the Bering Sea. Why? To startle us? Because it hadn't been done before (or possibly since)? It's memorable, that's for sure.

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11. The Player

the player
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Year: 1992
Director: Robert Altman
Writer: Michael Tolkin
Cast:Tim Robbins, Greta Scacchi, Whoopi Goldberg, Peter Gallagher, Fred Ward, Cynthia Stevenson, Vincent D'Onofrio and Dean Stockwell.

Tim Robbins is a studio executive who receives threatening postcards after rejecting a script. Mystery, mistaken identities and blackmail unfold against a backdrop of Hollywood's sleazy side. In typical Altman fashion, an all-star cast means several subplots.

Hot Tub Scene: In one scene, he visits a Palm Springs area resort with his girlfriend (Cynthia Stevens), and they sit in the hot tub as they discuss business -- this character is all business all the time. At least with this particular girlfriend. 'Nuf said.

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12. Whip It!

whip it with ellen page
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Year: 2010
Director:Drew Barrymore
Writer: Shauna Cross
Cast: Ellen Page, Marcia Gay Harden, Kristin Wiig, Juliette Lewis, Daniel Stern, Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore.

A funny and endearing film about a small-town Texas teen (Page, from Juno) who breaks away from a domineering beauty pageant-obsessed mother (Harden) and joins a roller derby team in Austin. Page is smart and sensitive as Bliss, who really discovers her true self when she rides the rink.

Hot Tub Scenes: Fallon is semi-sleazy roller derby announcer "Hot Tub" Johnnie Rocket, who attempts to lure the derby dames into his steaming tub o' fun. Nothing lurid -- just laughable.

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