The Best Comedy Movies: Top 5

Laughter, they say, is the universal language that transcends barriers and brings people together. In the world of cinema, comedy movies hold a special place, offering moments of pure joy and unadulterated amusement. As we delve into the realm of humor on the silver screen, it's important to acknowledge that the idea of the "best" comedy movies is as diverse as the sense of humor itself. Opinions vary, preferences differ, and what tickles one person's funny bone might not evoke the same reaction in another. That's the beauty of art—its subjectivity. This countdown of the best comedy movies ever made is, by no means, an objective decree, but rather a celebration of the countless films that have succeeded in making us laugh until our sides ache. As we journey through this subjectively funny landscape, we invite you to reminisce about your personal favorites and discover new cinematic gems, all while keeping in mind that in the world of art, opinions are as varied as the colors on a painter's palette.

Table Of Contents
    Best Comedy Movies

    A Brief History of Comedy Movies

    Since the inception of film as a storytelling medium, its quest to elicit laughter has been as vital as the air we breathe. The Lumiere Brothers, pioneers of this cinematic realm, tickled the audience's funny bone with their first film, "The Sprinkler Sprinkled," in 1895. This piece showcased a garden hose wielder getting duped into a watery encounter with a youthful prankster, launching the era of visual slapstick humor.

    As technology progressed, so did the comedy genre. In the early days of silent film, slapstick reigned supreme, exemplified by the legendary trio: the timeless Charlie Chaplin, the gravity-defying Buster Keaton, and the ever-daring Harold Lloyd. Their uproarious antics communicated across language barriers.

    The advent of sound heralded a transformation. The Marx Brothers, masters of zany humor, used witty dialogue to satirize the establishment, culminating in the biting political satire "Duck Soup." Amidst this change, the slapstick spirit persisted with icons like Laurel & Hardy and the Three Stooges, proving the enduring appeal of physical hilarity.

    The 1930s introduced the screwball comedy, a refreshing escape during the Depression. Frank Capra led this genre, crafting uproarious yet socially conscious films like "It Happened One Night." Ernst Lubitsch added a touch of sophistication, poking fun at the elite with his signature "Lubitsch Touch."

    The 1940s embraced serious themes – politics, materialism, and war. Sturges' "The Lady Eve" and Sullivan's "Travel" combined satire with complexity. The 1950s maintained maturity with courtship romances, only to be stirred by the Martin-Lewis dynamic duo. However, the era's hallmark was sanitized comedy.

    The 1960s tackled change head-on. "Dr. Strangelove" and "The Graduate" mirrored societal shifts, with satire and sexual exploration as their vehicles. In the 1970s and 1980s, satire and parody blossomed, championed by Woody Allen and Mel Brooks. Monty Python and their surreal humor marched across borders.

    The 1990s ushered in larger-than-life characters – Mike Myers, Jim Carrey, and Adam Sandler. They borrowed from silent-era slapstick, amplified for modern sensibilities. Then came the 21st century, an age of audacious abandon. R-rated comedies embraced profanity, sex, and debauchery. This boundary-pushing posed questions: Could comedy sustain itself while drenched in shock value? Was this evolution or devolution?

    As laughter remained the genre's heartbeat, the question remained: How far could the comedy genre push the boundaries of propriety? While society pondered this, the history of comedy's evolution stood as a testament to its resilience, its ability to mirror society, and its capacity to elicit joy in myriad ways.

    The Best Comedy Movies - Top 5

    #1 The Big Lebowski (1998)

    Released in 1998, this cinematic gem holds the coveted position of being the first choice in our list, and for good reason. Let's dive into the history of the movie, its creators, and the captivating story that has amused audiences for decades.

    Crafted by the iconic filmmaking duo, the Coen Brothers (Joel and Ethan Coen), "The Big Lebowski" was brought to life with their signature blend of irreverent humor, unconventional storytelling, and memorable characters. Known for their diverse filmography that spans genres and defies categorization, the Coen Brothers embarked on a unique journey with this film, infusing it with their distinct style that has since become synonymous with cinematic brilliance.

    The movie takes us into the quirky world of "the Dude," Jeff Lebowski, portrayed masterfully by Jeff Bridges. A laid-back, White Russian-loving slacker, the Dude's life takes an unexpected twist when he's mistaken for a millionaire Lebowski by a pair of thugs who desecrate his rug as a form of coercion. The rug, however, is not just any rug—it's a prized possession that really "ties the room together." Thus, the tale begins.

    As the Dude endeavors to seek compensation for his now-ruined rug from the wealthy Lebowski, hilarity ensues. Along for the ride is his bowling buddy Walter, played by John Goodman, a Vietnam War vet with a penchant for guns and a fiery temper. Together, this unlikely duo navigates a convoluted web of deception, misunderstandings, and absurd encounters that draw them into a world of eccentric characters and bizarre circumstances.

    The Coen Brothers' expert storytelling introduces a cast of unforgettable personas, each contributing to the film's comedic brilliance. From the enigmatic Maude Lebowski (Julianne Moore), an avant-garde artist with an unconventional perspective on life, to the nihilistic trio led by a deadpan Peter Stormare, the characters' interactions with the Dude and Walter create a symphony of humor that crescendos with every scene.

    As the plot unfolds, it becomes clear that there's more at stake than just a rug. From porn industry tycoons to German nihilists with peculiar musical tastes, everyone seems to have their eyes on the Dude. The movie's labyrinthine plot, punctuated by moments of outrageous dialogue and unexpected twists, keeps audiences engaged and laughing throughout.

    "The Big Lebowski" is a testament to the Coen Brothers' unparalleled ability to create a comedic masterpiece that thrives on absurdity, wit, and impeccable timing. Its unique blend of offbeat characters, clever writing, and surreal situations has earned it a dedicated following, elevating it to the ranks of the greatest comedy films of all time. As the Dude would say, it's a movie that truly "abides" in the hearts of its fans, reminding us that sometimes, life's most absurd moments are the ones that make us laugh the hardest.

    #2 The Meaning Of Life (1983)

    Released in 1983, this uproarious creation secures its place as the second choice in our list. From its inception to its uproarious execution, let's uncover the history, creators, and the sidesplitting narrative that have made this film an enduring comedy classic.

    Crafted by the inimitable Monty Python troupe, "The Meaning of Life" showcases the distinctive blend of British wit, surrealism, and satirical humor that the group is renowned for. Comprising Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin, the Monty Python team has left an indelible mark on comedy, and this film stands as a testament to their comedic prowess.

    At its core, "The Meaning of Life" tackles the monumental question that has puzzled humanity for centuries: Why are we here? The film embarks on a riotous exploration of life's stages, commencing with the miracle of birth. Here, a doctor's preoccupation with his equipment takes precedence over the delivery itself, setting the tone for the absurdity that ensues.

    From there, the film unfurls a series of vignettes that dissect various life phases. The audience encounters a Roman Catholic couple who justify their numerous offspring with the anthem "Every Sperm is Sacred." The tale transitions to the lives of Catholic schoolboys subjected to a bizarre church service and an even stranger sex education class—a sequence emblematic of the film's penchant for skewering conventions.

    Wars, both real and imaginary, find their place in the narrative. An officer's birthday disrupts military plans, while a tiger takes an officer's leg in a whimsically chaotic battlefield scene. Middle age is explored with a restaurant order of "philosophy," which is humorously treated as a menu item. Live organ transplants form a surreal and darkly comedic sequence that leads to the autumn years depicted within a restaurant, culminating in a song that leaves nothing to the imagination.

    As life inevitably journeys toward its finality, the film introduces the Grim Reaper, taking us to the ultimate stage of human existence—death. But, true to Monty Python's spirit, the narrative doesn't stop there. The portrayal of heaven as a perpetually festive, Christmas-adorned paradise maintains the film's whimsical and satirical charm until the very end.

    "Monty Python's The Meaning of Life" is a whimsical odyssey that infuses philosophical ponderings with uproarious laughter. The film's unique structure and comedic sketches showcase the troupe's unparalleled ability to blend satire, absurdity, and biting commentary into a singular masterpiece. As the Monty Python team ruminates on the weighty question of life's purpose, they invite audiences to chuckle at the absurdities of existence—a reminder that even life's most perplexing enigmas are not immune to being viewed through the lens of humor.

    #3 Duck Soup (1933)

    This film's historical significance, its eccentric creators, and its uproarious storyline have earned it a spot in the pantheon of cinematic greatness.

    Released in 1933, "Duck Soup" was brought to life by the zany minds of the Marx Brothers, renowned for their unparalleled ability to blend slapstick, satire, and razor-sharp wit into cinematic gold. The combination of Groucho, Chico, Harpo, and Zeppo Marx created a comedic quartet that defied convention and gave birth to a brand of humor that remains unparalleled to this day.

    Set against the backdrop of the fictional country Freedonia, the film navigates a financial crisis on the brink of revolution. To secure a bailout from the affluent Mrs. Teasdale, the government appoints the unconventional Rufus T. Firefly (Groucho Marx) as its president. However, rather than embracing the gravitas and decorum associated with his position, Firefly delights in dismantling traditional norms and revels in chaos.

    Firefly's antics soon catch the attention of the neighboring country of Sylvania, which has its own agenda of overthrowing Freedonia. Enter Pinky (Harpo Marx) and Chicolini (Chico Marx), two spies dispatched to gather intelligence on Firefly. As the narrative unfolds, absurdity ensues, and the stage is set for an all-out comedic war between the two countries.

    "Duck Soup" stands as a masterclass in lampooning political absurdity and the follies of power. The film's rapid-fire puns, visual gags, and surreal humor create an atmosphere of comedic anarchy that is uniquely Marx Brothers. Groucho's signature quips and double entendres punctuate the satire, while Harpo and Chico contribute their own brand of chaos and linguistic acrobatics.

    Amidst the comedic mayhem, "Duck Soup" also holds a mirror to the tumultuous political landscape of its time, making it both a hysterical farce and a biting social commentary. The film's climactic war sequence, a cacophony of surreal visuals and slapstick, serves as a satirical critique of the absurdity of conflict and the whims of those in power.

    "Duck Soup" continues to resonate with audiences as a testament to the enduring power of irreverent comedy. Its legacy as a Marx Brothers masterpiece endures, and its influence can be seen in subsequent generations of comedians and filmmakers who have drawn inspiration from its distinctive style.

    In a world where political turmoil and societal absurdities still abound, "Duck Soup" serves as a reminder that laughter can be both a release and a weapon against the irrationalities of the human condition. As we revisit the hijinks of Freedonia and revel in its uproarious satire, we're reminded that the Marx Brothers' brand of humor remains as relevant and uproarious as ever.

    #4 Airplane (1980)

    As the fourth choice in our list, this film's history, creators, and uproarious storyline have etched it into the annals of cinematic greatness.

    Taking flight in 1980, "Airplane!" was directed by Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, and Jerry Zucker, collectively known as the comedic trio "ZAZ." Their unique blend of outrageous satire, visual gags, and rapid-fire humor transformed the mundane setting of an airplane into a backdrop for non-stop hilarity.

    The film introduces us to Ted Striker, a traumatized ex-fighter pilot portrayed by Robert Hays. Still haunted by his past failures, Striker's neurotic fear of flying drives much of the film's comedic momentum. Determined to win back his old flame and flight attendant, Elaine Dickinson (played by Julie Hagerty), Striker unwittingly boards a domestic flight from Los Angeles to Chicago, setting the stage for a series of uproarious misadventures.

    As fate would have it, the flight is hit by a severe case of in-flight food poisoning, leaving both passengers and crew incapacitated. The resulting chaos thrusts Striker into the unlikely position of having to confront his fears and take control of the aircraft to ensure everyone's safety. With the help of a gruff air-traffic controller (Leslie Nielsen) and his former commander (Robert Stack), Striker embarks on a series of zany attempts to keep the plane airborne and ultimately make a successful landing.

    "Airplane!" revels in its relentless barrage of visual and verbal humor, poking fun at disaster movie tropes, airline clichés, and even the characters' own eccentricities. The film's rapid-fire gags and deadpan delivery create an atmosphere of comedic mayhem that leaves no room for the audience to catch their breath.

    As Striker navigates a barrage of ludicrous scenarios—including a malfunctioning autopilot and a literal pile-up of comedic elements—the film's genius lies in its ability to consistently deliver laughs from start to finish. From puns and sight gags to absurd one-liners, "Airplane!" crafts a comedic symphony that pays homage to classic cinema while crafting a comedic masterpiece all its own.

    "Airplane!" soars as a timeless comedy that has retained its uproarious charm for decades. Its unique blend of slapstick, wordplay, and absurdity has earned it a hallowed place in the comedy pantheon, and its legacy endures as a film that proves laughter truly knows no bounds—even at 30,000 feet.

    #5 Dr. Strangelove (1964)

    As the curtain rises on our list of the top 5 best comedy movies ever made, "Dr. Strangelove" takes its place as a darkly hilarious masterpiece that satirizes the gravest of matters with an irreverent touch. Released in 1964, this film's history, creators, and razor-sharp storyline have etched it into the annals of cinematic brilliance.

    Directed by the iconic Stanley Kubrick, "Dr. Strangelove" presents a scathing yet uproarious critique of the Cold War era's nuclear anxiety and political absurdities. Kubrick, renowned for his masterful cinematic vision, crafted a film that delves deep into the fears of the time while delivering a biting commentary wrapped in comedic brilliance.

    The film's narrative revolves around an impending nuclear catastrophe triggered by a series of absurd miscommunications and misguided decisions. As the world teeters on the brink of destruction, the characters' actions range from ludicrous to utterly nonsensical, creating a rollercoaster of humor and tension.

    Set against the backdrop of an escalating crisis between the United States and the Soviet Union, the plot centers on a deranged U.S. Air Force general who orders a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union without proper authorization. Chaos ensues as government officials and military personnel scramble to avert the impending disaster.

    The film introduces an unforgettable cast of characters, each with their own quirks and motivations. Notably, the eponymous Dr. Strangelove, portrayed by Peter Sellers in one of his iconic roles, is a wheelchair-bound former Nazi scientist turned presidential adviser. His eccentricity and deadpan delivery add layers of dark humor to the narrative.

    Kubrick's masterful direction and the script's incisive wit blend seamlessly, resulting in a film that dances along the thin line between absurdity and reality. The stark black-and-white cinematography serves as a stark canvas for the film's satire, creating a visual contrast that amplifies the inherent absurdity of the situation.

    "Dr. Strangelove" remains a timeless masterpiece that transcends its era. Its ability to extract humor from the most dire of circumstances showcases the power of satire in illuminating the absurdity of human folly. Kubrick's meticulous attention to detail, combined with the performances of the ensemble cast, creates a film that not only entertains but also provokes thought on the volatile nature of international politics.

    In a world where global tensions and geopolitical posturing still persist, "Dr. Strangelove" stands as a poignant reminder that laughter can serve as a weapon against the looming specter of nuclear annihilation. Through its razor-sharp wit and indelible performances, this film secures its place as a comedic classic that challenges us to find humor even in the darkest corners of human history.

    Honorable Mentions

    As stated at the outset of this article, the world of comedy is subjective, with humor being a uniquely personal experience. Having delved into our top 5 best comedy movies ever made, we now turn our attention to a selection of honorable mentions—films that have undeniably left an indelible mark on the comedic landscape. Let's explore some of these notable cinematic gems.

    The General (1926)

    A silent comedy masterpiece directed by and starring the legendary Buster Keaton, "The General" is a testament to physical comedy and Keaton's unmatched ability to orchestrate hilarity through ingenious stunts and pratfalls.

    The Great Dictator (1940)

    In a departure from his silent film persona, Charlie Chaplin takes on a dual role as a comedic dictator and a Jewish barber in this satirical masterpiece. "The Great Dictator" not only showcases Chaplin's comedic brilliance but also delivers a poignant message against tyranny.

    Some Like It Hot (1959)

    Directed by Billy Wilder, this classic screwball comedy features Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, and Jack Lemmon in a hilarious tale of mistaken identities, cross-dressing, and romantic entanglements.

    Young Frankenstein (1974)

    Mel Brooks strikes comedic gold again with this homage to classic monster movies. "Young Frankenstein" brilliantly blends horror and humor, resulting in a film that's both a parody and a loving tribute.

    Being John Malkovich (1999)

    A surreal and inventive comedy that takes audiences on a mind-bending journey through a portal into the mind of actor John Malkovich. The film's unique premise and quirky humor make it a standout in the comedy genre.

    Dumb and Dumber (1994)

    Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels deliver uproarious performances in this slapstick comedy that revels in absurdity. Their comedic chemistry and over-the-top antics have made "Dumb and Dumber" a cult classic.

    Life of Brian (1979)

    Monty Python's irreverent humor shines in this satirical take on religion and society. "Life of Brian" pushes boundaries and challenges conventions, all while delivering laughs with the iconic Python wit.

    Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

    This absurd and iconic adventure takes on the Arthurian legend with Monty Python's signature brand of humor. The film's quotable lines, surreal humor, and unforgettable scenes have made it a beloved comedy classic.

    Each of these films has etched an enduring impression on the comedic landscape, enriching the tapestry of laughter-inducing experiences that the world of cinema has to offer. It's important to note that the realm of comedy is teeming with exceptional works, and many other gems also deserve recognition for their contribution to the art of humor.

    Make a Comedy Movie with Epidemic Sound

    When it comes to comedy, the power of sound is undeniable. The whimsical jingles, quirky melodies, and amusing sound effects can elevate the humor of a scene, making it all the more memorable. Epidemic Sound's commitment to providing a rich variety of options extends to its collection of comedy music and sound effects, ensuring that creators have a plethora of choices to make their audience laugh out loud.

    From slapstick comedy to witty wordplay, Epidemic Sound's comedy music spans a wide spectrum of humorous tones. Whether you're envisioning a hilarious chase sequence, a lighthearted montage, or a satirical take on a situation, their library offers tunes that match every comedic beat. The ability to choose from a spectrum of musical styles ensures that the soundtrack seamlessly complements the visual narrative, enriching the comedic experience.

    Punctuating comedic timing with well-placed sound effects can turn a chuckle into a full-blown laugh. From the classic "boing" of a spring to the zany splashes and crashes, Epidemic Sound's sound effects library is a playground of audio elements that can be wielded creatively to enhance humor. These sound effects, meticulously curated to suit various scenarios, grant creators the ability to craft comedic moments that linger in the audience's memory.

    The accessibility of Epidemic Sound's platform means that filmmakers and content creators can seamlessly integrate their chosen tracks into their projects without the hassle of copyright concerns. This level of convenience empowers creators to focus on their craft and storytelling, knowing that they have a robust library of comedic audio elements at their fingertips.

    If you'd like to read our Epidemic Sound review, follow the link below!


    Comedy has been weaving threads of joy, satire, and absurdity into the fabric of our entertainment for centuries. Our journey through the top 5 best comedy movies ever made has taken us on a rollercoaster of laughter, showcasing the brilliance of filmmakers who dared to tickle our funny bones and challenge our perspectives.

    From the witty antics of "Airplane!" to the irreverent musings of "Dr. Strangelove," each film we've explored has left an indelible mark on the comedic landscape. These movies aren't just sources of entertainment; they're windows into the human experience, reflecting our quirks, foibles, and shared moments of mirth.

    As we bid adieu to this curated selection, it's crucial to remember that comedy is a vast and evolving art form. For every film celebrated here, there are countless others that have left audiences doubled over in laughter or pondering the nature of humor itself. Our choices, though carefully considered, are but a fraction of the comedic treasures that await discovery.

    So, whether you're a devotee of slapstick, satire, or cerebral wit, the world of comedy has a boundless array of delights to offer. As you embark on your cinematic journey, may these films serve as guiding stars, leading you to explore the realms of laughter and storytelling that have enriched our lives and made us see the world through a lighter, more humorous lens.

    Best Comedy Movies 2
    FREE TRIAL No Code Needed The Best Referral Promo Discount Codes

    Exclusive Offer

    Get Free Trial on Epidemic Sound

    I'm a filmmaker with extensive training in multiple sectors of content creation whose films have been shown all over the world. I have also served as a speaker and jury member in multiple events. Nonetheless, in recent years, I became extremely disappointed with the course of the art world in general, and as consequence, I've developed an interest in topics I believed would become crucial for the future, namely, cybersecurity, self-education, web design, and investing in various assets, such as cryptocurrencies. All those events have driven me to launch RushRadar.

    Leave a Comment