When someone asks me, “What are your favorite comedy movies?”, I always respond with “How much time do you have?”. You see, I love movies that make me laugh, whether they’re romantic comedy movies, musical comedies or screwball comedies. There’s nothing I’d rather do on a rainy day than pop some popcorn and watch a film with cut-ups like Bill Murray, Ben Stiller or John Cleese.
In my mind, the best comedy movies aren’t always the top comedy movies. While I liked There’s Something About Mary, I don’t really think it stands up to some of the movies listed below. Of course, it’s all a matter of opinion.
Recommended Comedy Movies – Funny Flicks & Films
I’ve put together this list of recommended comedy movies in response to the question, “What are your favorite comedy movies?”. You may or may not agree, but I urge you to see them all before making a final judgment. Hopefully, these funny flicks & films will provide at least a few chuckles.
- Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) – When someone asks, “What are your favorite comedy movies?”, this is usually the first film that crosses my mind. The lads from Monty Python (Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin) take the old legends of King Arthur and turn them upside down.
There’s the killer rabbit, the Black Knight, the Knights Who Say Ni, and, of course, those damned French. The movie is an outrageous off-the-wall journey from the very beginning (even the opening credits aren’t spared). The jokes and oddities come at such a rapid pace that you’ll need several viewings just to take it all in. A true comic masterpiece.
Ferris often breaks the fourth wall and speaks directly to the audience, but it doesn’t seem at all out of place in this inventive comedy. As he and his friends ditch school, they are relentlessly pursued by the Dean of Students, Mr. Edward Rooney (Jeffrey Jones in his finest role). Every movie in the last 20 years about a “cool kid” outwitting the authority figure was partially inspired by this comedy gem.
- Wayne’s World (1992) – Mike Myers and Dana Carvey took their metalhead characters Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar from Saturday Night Live and successfully transplanted them to the big screen. The two loveable losers host a weekly cable access show from the basement of Wayne‘s house (where he lives with his parents)
Things get a bit out of hand when a sleazy agent played by Rob Lowe offers to give them a big-time television contract. The boys must choose between staying true to themselves or cashing in on their newfound fame. Tia Carrera co-stars and is smoking hot as Wayne’s love interest.
- The Cable Guy (1996) – Ben Stiller directs and Jim Carrey stars in this dark comedy with a strong message about the American reliance on television and pop culture. Matthew Broderick plays Steven Kovacs, an average guy who makes the mistake of showing kindness towards cable repairman Ernie “Chip” Douglas (Carrey). When Douglas begins obsessing over his new “friend,” things get increasingly bizarre with hilarious results. Jack Black and Leslie Mann also star in supporting roles.
- Dr. Strangelove (1964) – This black comedy stars Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, Slim Pickens, Keenan Wynn and Sterling Hayden. With master director Stanley Kubrick behind the camera, the film pokes fun at the Cold War and the very real possibility of mutually assured destruction. Sellers really steals the show, playing a British officer, the President of the United States and a wheelchair-bound ex-Nazi scientist named Dr. Strangelove.
- Meet The Parents (2000) – When a male nurse (Ben Stiller) goes to meet his girlfriend’s parents (Robert DeNiro and Blythe Danner), all hell breaks loose. The movie allows both Stiller and DeNiro to shine, and their rivalry builds to a hilarious crescendo. A sequel, Meet the Fockers, was made in 2004.
- Groundhog Day (1993) – Bill Murray plays Phil Connors, a television weatherman with an out-of-control ego. Sent to report on the annual Groundhog Day celebration in Punxsutawney, he finds himself reliving the same day over and over. Andie MacDowell plays the woman who captures his heart. If you’re a fan of Bill Murray, you’ve probably already seen Groundhog Day at least five or ten times. It’s just than good.
- Airplane! (1980) – This movie was made by the same guys who brought us the hilarious Naked Gun movies. Crazy gags abound throughout this comedy, including an inflatable co-pilot, a white woman who can “speak” jive, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar playing himself but pretending to be a pilot named Roger Murdock. One of the all-time great zany comedies (just be sure to avoid the sequel).
- Clerks (1994) – While I don’t really think this one has held up well over the years, it remains on my list of top comedies. Dante, a slacker in his twenties, is called in to work at the convenience store on his day off, and he’s kept company throughout most of the film by his best friend, Randal (who‘s supposed to be working at the video store next door).
Director Kevin Smith crafted a truly original comedy, dealing with issues such as fear and uncertainty about the future. The dialogue crackles with energy, and this was the first time I’d heard movie characters riff on subjects such as Return of the Jedi. If you’re a movie geek who loves comedies, this is a must-see.
- A Fish Called Wanda (1988) – The second movie on my list starring John Cleese and Michael Palin, A Fish Called Wanda also includes Jamie Lee Curtis and Kevin Kline in the cast. Kline won an Oscar for his performance as clueless hitman Otto, and the recognition was certainly deserved.
Cleese plays a frustrated lawyer whose life is turned upside down when he meets the seductive Wanda (Curtis). Of course, things hardly go as planned, and he soon finds himself tangled up in a jewel heist with the comically murderous Otto hot on his trail. Palin is especially good as an animal lover with a speech impediment.