Never underestimate the power of a good laugh, especially at the movies. Everyone can think of
at least one comedy that reliably makes them cackle with rapturous glee — a film that can sweeten a sour mood, or temporarily give light to dark times. That’s why the genre is so popular, right?
But even if you’ve already got a list of your favorite comedies, it’s always worth seeking out new options — and there are plenty of great ones here, with a range of subgenres to explore: romantic comedies, cringe comedies, stoner comedies, queer comedies, British comedies, mockumentaries, oldies, and everything in-between. Some movies start out funny, then become sad, then end on a funnier note. Others are
so funny that they inspired sequels, threequels, prequels, and even a few spin-off TV series. In summary, your next favorite comedy is somewhere on this list.
Bridesmaids to The Birdcage, Superbad to , Booksmart to Mean Girls Girl’s Trip, and Harold & Kumar to — below, check out the 35 funniest movies of all time and where to stream them. Romy & Michele Love this list? to save these recs to your own watchlist and follow Create a Likewise account Bustle for more. You'll always know exactly what to watch next. 1 To Wong Foo… (1995)
This film — full title
To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar — isn’t just a cult classic or a forerunner to mainstream queer cinema. It’s also really, really funny. The film stars Wesley Snipes, Patrick Swayze, and John Leguizamo as three drag queens road-tripping to Los Angeles, and also features cameos from RuPaul (obviously) and the eponymous Julie Newmar herself. Rent or buy on Prime Video. 2 Office Space (1999)
If you love workplace comedies, then you need to watch
Office Space — think of it as an older cousin to The Office or Parks & Recreation. Like those TV shows, Office Space brilliantly skewers the mundane — unnecessary meetings with your boss, water cooler chats, and those redundant assignments that offer little (or no) reward… all the things don’t feel very funny when they happen to you. Watch now on Prime Video. 3 What We Do in the Shadows (2014)
This is a movie to sink your teeth into. (Get it? Because it’s a movie about vampires? Anyway…)
What We Do In The Shadows uses the mockumentary format to great effect — it’s a masterclass in comedic timing, awkward pauses, and hilariously gratuitous gore. The film also has the distinction of having spawned a spin-off TV series of the same name, which is just as good (if not better). Rent or buy on Prime Video. 4 The Seven Year Itch (1955)
Billy Wilder (
The Apartment, Some Like It Hot) knows how to write a clever comedy, and The Seven Year Itch is no exception. The story centers on Richard (Tom Ewell), who finds himself home alone in the city while his wife and child vacation for the summer. When a new, stunningly beautiful tenant (Marilyn Monroe) moves in upstairs, Richard starts to feel an itch he can’t quite scratch — and struggles to decide if he should ask the girl upstairs for a hand. Rent or buy now on Prime Video. 5 Bridesmaids (2011)
Something in the universe shifted when
Bridesmaids first came out: Everyone was talking about it, and for good reason. Stars Kristen Wiig (who also co-wrote the script) and Maya Rudolph both deliver a handful of masterful one-liners. But Melissa McCarthy — a steadily working actor at the time, whose fame skyrocketed because of her role in Bridesmaids — is the movie’s real Maid of Honor. Watch now on Peacock. 6 A Very Brady Movie (1995) & A Very Brady Sequel (1996)
The Brady Bunch, right? Well, both A Very Brady Movie and A Very Brady Sequel are parody movies of the hit TV series. The gag with these movies are that the Bradys are still stuck in the ’70s, and incapable of adapting to the fast-changing world of the ‘90s. Honestly, the sequel is slightly better than the first — but really, they’re both worth your time. Watch both now on Paramount+. 7 My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002)
My Big Fat Greek Wedding was released in April 2002, it was a small indie flick with a limited run; by the end of summer, it was a bonafide sleeper hit. Nia Vardalos wrote and starred in the film, which she adapted from her one-woman show about growing up with an overbearing Greek family. Overall, it’s a heartwarming romp that’ll also teach you 50 new ways to use Windex. Watch now on Hulu. 8 Girl’s Trip (2017)
What’s better than a wild trip with your friends to New Orleans? Well, not much!
Girl’s Trip stars Regina Hall, Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Tiffany Haddish (in her breakout role) as college friends who slowly lost touch post-graduation. They plan a group trip to reconnect, but events quickly spiral out of control — take, for example, that infamous zip line scene. Watch now on Hulu. 9 Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)
On the ultimate day of hooky-play, Ferris Bueller (a young Matthew Broderick) convinces his parents, as well as most of his suburban Chicago hometown, that he’s too sick to attend school. The only people not falling for it are his sister and the school principal, both of whom loathe him. But despite their best efforts, Ferris actually gets away with it — and seeing him come out on top is arguably funnier than any of the film’s gags.
Watch now on Netflix and Paramount+, 10 Mean Girls (2004)
Does this one really require an explanation? This Tina Fey-scripted masterpiece about cliquey high schoolers and petty drama launched a thousand catchphrases, which then spawned several memes, which then solidified
Mean Girls as an instant classic. Plus, Rachel McAdams, Amanda Seyfried, and Daniel Franzese all nail their roles. Lizzy Caplan, too. And Lindsay Lohan. Honestly, they’re all so fetch. Watch now on Netflix. 11 Meet the Parents (2000) & Meet the Fockers (2004)
Chances are you don’t want a father-in-law like Robert De Niro’s character in
Meet the Parents — a retired CIA agent posing as a florist, who won’t rest until he finds dirt on his daughter’s beau. In both Meet the Parents and its sequel, Meet the Fockers, Greg (Ben Stiller) struggles to win over his partner’s parents — and De Niro’s character in particular — to great comedic effect. Watch both now on Peacock. 12 A Night at the Opera (1935)
If you’re listing comedy legends, there’s no way you can leave out the Marx Brothers, some of the 20th century’s most influential comedians. Among their greatest hits is
A Night at the Opera, a film that features the duo’s classic, slapstick shenanigans — this time, set in a grand, Italian opera house. It’s the ultimate blend of high brow, low brow, and Groucho’s brows. Rent or buy on Prime Video. 13 Friday (1995)
A stoner comedy with elements of action and suspense,
Friday was an instant hit — so much so that it sparked both a wave of sequels and an enduring cult following. The film, which features an all-star cast of ’90s icons — including Ice Cube, Chris Tucker, Bernie Mac, and Regina King — follows two stoners who smoke weed they’re not supposed to, and are forced to pay back what they smoked, or risk death (seriously). Watch now on HBO Max. 14 Superbad (2007)
The early aughts saw a drought in critically-acclaimed buddy comedies, but
Superbad broke that dry spell. And 15 years after its premiere, the results are in: Superbad still holds up. The now-classic movie centers on two unpopular high school seniors — played byMichael Cera and Jonah Hill — who vow to have a wild night before graduation. Naturally, pretty much everything that can go wrong does go wrong. Watch now on Hulu + Live TV. 15 Booksmart (2019) Booksmart follows a plot almost identical to Superbad’s (which is kind of eerie, considering that Beanie Feldstein, one of the film’s leads, is Jonah Hill’s sister). This flick, however, manages to be much more inclusive and culturally sensitive without cutting back on laughs; s ome would even argue that it’s better than its predecessor. In any event, Booksmart lives up to its name — it’s a sharp friendship comedy that’s as clever as it is ridiculous. Watch now on Hulu. 16 The Party (1968)
Peter Sellers was one of the mid-20th century’s most acclaimed comedians, and though movies like
The Party have since fallen into obscurity, it’s worth seeking them out. In The Party, Sellers stars as a bumbling actor who’s put on Hollywood’s blacklist after he accidentally blows up a set. That blacklist, however, isn’t what it seems: Rather than a list of the unemployable, it’s a guest list for a prominent dinner party — a party where Seller’s character again (inadvertently) causes immense mayhem. Rent or buy on Prime Video. 17 Saved! (2004)
Mandy Moore as Hilary Faye. This 2004 flick is about a sweet, über-Christian teenager (Jena Malone) whose senior year at her faith-obsessed school is turned upside down when her boyfriend tells her he’s gay, and then she accidentally gets pregnant. But really, this is Moore’s movie. Her character — judgmental, manipulative, and vindictive — is everything an Evangelical Christian shouldn’t be. Watch now on Prime Video. 18 Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)
Before Sean Penn was a two-time Oscar-winning actor, he won audiences over as Jeff Spicoli, a pot-loving, wave-catching, less-than-brilliant SoCal high school student. Though
Fast Times at Ridgemont High is largely an ensemble film, and many cast members (including Jennifer Jason Leigh) gave memorable performances, Penn’s character is legendary, and arguably why Fast Times still endures. Watch now on Peacock. 19 Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
It’s a real testament to comedy troupe Monty Python that they’re still popular in 2022, more than half a century since their debut. Arguably their most well-known project is
Monty Python and the Holy Grail, a spoof of England’s legendary Knights of the Round Table. While any Monty Python project will likely leave you in stitches (like Life of Brian or T he Meaning of Life), it’s their Holy Grail that runneth over with brilliance. Watch now on Netflix. 20 Smiley Face (2007)
Stoner comedies are rarely told from a woman's perspective — an imbalance that
Smiley Face aims to correct . Anna Faris stars as a precocious but lazy post-grad who spends her days in front of the TV, eating her roommate’s food. The film follows her for one of those weed-fueled days, lampooning how anxiety-provoking everyday situations — like walking into a crowded bus — can feel while under the influence. Smiley Face will likely put a smile on your face, too. Watch now on Prime Video. 21 Airplane! (1980)
This is one of those beloved comedies that’s become a mainstay on “Best Of” lists, and usually places somewhere in the Top 10. A parody of disaster films,
Airplane! sees an entire airline crew come down with food poisoning, leaving the plane’s safety in the hands of a passenger, who may or may not know what he’s doing. Chaos ensues. Rent or buy on Prime Video. 23 Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001)
Renée Zellweger’s Bridget Jones has really aged like a fine wine — she’s an imperfect, inarticulate, and somewhat messy wino, but with an absolute heart of gold. (It’s also ironic that the film and Zellweger’s character are still so beloved, considering that
) literally no one wanted her to star in the movie. Watch now on Netflix. 24 Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (2004)
There are a few best-friend stoner comedies on this list, but
Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle manages to make a tried-and-true Hollywood formula feel fresh. In a major departure from the genre’s standard fare, the two eponymous protagonists (John Cho and Kal Penn) aren’t depicted as unambitious or overwhelmingly lazy — they’re both intelligent and (somewhat) accomplished. Never fear, though: their wild adventure in search of tiny hamburgers leads to some pretty outlandish events. Watch now on Netflix. 25 Groundhog Day (1993)
Imagine having to relive a bad day. Now imagine having to relive that bad day for the rest of your life — that’s the conceit of
Groundhog Day. The film centers on Phil (Bill Murray), a perpetually unamused TV weatherman who travels to Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania for its annual Groundhog Day festivities. After he goes to bed that night, Phil wakes up the following morning to experience the same Groundhog Day again. And again. And again. Murray’s deadpan delivery makes his character’s plight that much more amusing. Watch now on Hulu. 26 Zoolander (2001)
One of Ben Stiller’s most iconic characters is Derek Zoolander, the himbo male model who doesn’t know what’s going on most of the time, yet somehow manages to foil an assassination attempt. A satire of the fashion industry with plenty of celebrity cameos (David Bowie, Tom Ford, Paris Hilton, and Tommy Hilfiger, just to name a few),
Zoolander is a deceptively clever takedown of that world and all its attendant nonsense. Watch now on Paramount+. 27 A Fish Called Wanda (1988) A Fish Called Wanda was released to immediate acclaim in 1988, and became the rare action-comedy to earn Oscar recognition. The movie stars John Cleese, Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Palin, and Kevin Kline as four con artists planning an elaborate jewelry heist. If Ocean's Eleven and Monty Python had a baby, it would be A Fish Called Wanda. Rent or buy on Prime Video. 28 Ghostbusters (1984)
If you’re looking for a horror-comedy, who you gonna call?
Ghostbusters! This classic centers on a group of Columbia University professors who band together to form a paranormal exterminator business (called “Ghostbusters”) to eliminate malevolent spirits around the city. Since its premiere, this movie has become a global phenomenon, inspiring multiple sequels and a women-led reboot. Watch now on Hulu. 29 Bend It Like Beckham (2002)
My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Bend It Like Beckham — which also happens to be about an immigrant family and their Westernized daughter — was given a limited release in the United States, before word-of-mouth propelled it to global recognition. The film follows a precocious soccer (or football, because, you know, England) player who dreams of going pro. The only problem? Her culturally-conservative (and one-liner-filled) Indian family think there’s no place for a woman on the field. Watch now on HBO Max. 30 Romy & Michele’s High School Reunion (1997)
The people love Romy and Michele —
that’s just facts. This heartwarming, cleverly stupid film about two best friends (Mira Sorvino and Lisa Kudrow) who try to fake post-grad success at their 10-year high school reunion is replete with one-liners, questionable fashion choices, businesswoman lunch specials, and an eleventh-hour interpretive dance number. All silly jokes aside, Romy & Michele is, at its core, a movie about female friendship. Watch now on Paramount+. 31 Team America: World Police (2004) South Park’s Trey Parker and Matt Stone know how to make an irreverent comedy, and their skills are very much on display in Team America: World Police. Using puppets instead of actors, this political comedy pokes fun at movies and TV shows like Saving Private Ryan or Thunderbirds. In true Parker-Stone fashion, some (or most, really) of the jokes are written for shock value. It may not be the most politically correct movie, but it’s sure funny as hell. Watch now on Showtime. 32 Superstar (1999)
SNL, Molly Shannon earned acclaim for her Mary Katherine Gallagher character, an awkward Catholic school girl. In Superstar, she gets the silver screen treatment. Mary Katherine enters her school talent show in the hopes of winning a cameo in a Hollywood movie. Given Shannon’s talent for physical comedy, it’s hardly a surprise that the results are hilarious. Watch now on Starz. 33 The Birdcage (1996)
Robin Williams and Nathan Lane are the heart and soul of
The Birdcage. Armand and Albert are the owner and headliner (respectively) of a popular South Beach drag club, but they decide to pose as a straight married couple when they meet their son’s future in-laws — one of whom is a conservative Republican senator — for the first time. William and Lane’s flamboyant, ridiculous performances make the movie shine — with lots of glitter and sequins, of course.
Watch now on
Pluto TV, Roku, or Tubi. 34 The Odd Couple (1968)
Jack Lemmon delivers another iconic performance in
The Odd Couple. Felix (Lemmon), a neurotic, clean-freak New Yorker who was recently separated from his wife, moves in with his easygoing, somewhat sloppy divorced friend Oscar (Walter Matthau). It doesn’t take long for the pair to realize they’re entirely incompatible as roommates — uproariously so. Watch now on Pluto TV. 35 Pineapple Express (2008)
Pineapple Express is yet another comedy about stoners trying not to get killed. But it also features Judd Apatow’s distinctive humor, and is filled with quick jokes, absurd situations, and loads of testosterone-fueled immaturity and physical comedy. And also lots and lots of weed. Watch now on Pluto TV.
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