Last Updated: January 21st
Comedies can be difficult to compare. Sometimes you’re in the mood for something cerebral, and other times you just want to watch people get punched in the nuts. While there are definitely some gems in Netflix’s movie sections, you have to dig through a lot of straight-to-DVD sequels and bad indie flicks to find the best comedies to watch. While people have cracked the code for finding the best comedies on Netflix right now, we’ve put together a list of some of the funniest movies as a starting point in your quest for the perfect Friday night in.
1. Trainspotting (1996)
Run Time: 93 min | IMDb: 8.1/10
Danny Boyle’s black comedy crime film has become a cult classic and made it on plenty “best movies” lists over the years. Ewan McGregor plays Mark Renton, an unemployed heroin addict who shares a flat with his equally unimpressive friends, Spud, Sick Boy, Franco, and Tommy. The group parties together constantly, doing drugs, getting into fights, and committing petty crimes before Renton attempts to get clean only to return home to make a drug deal that could set him up with a clean slate. It’s darkly comedic, with some ridiculous twists thrown in, but the core of the story is surprisingly emotional.
2. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
Run Time: 91 min | IMDb: 8.3/10
Even if you’ve never seen any of the Monty Python films, you most certainly know of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It’s been quoted, memed, gif-ed, and idolized by comedy fans for generations. At its core, it’s a parody of the legends of King Arthur and his knights. It’s stocked with an impressive cast — John Cleese, Graham Chapman, Terry Gilliam, etc — and its full of eccentric characters, bizarre adventures, and gut-bustingly funny jokes. Think failed Trojan Rabbits, modern-day murder investigations, animated monsters, and musical numbers. Intellectual midgets everywhere will love it.
3. John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch (2019)
Run Time: 110 min | IMDb: 7.6/10
Comedian John Mulaney delivers another brilliantly off-kilter comedy special for Netflix, this time paying tribute to children’s programming of the past with Mulaney and some friends palling around with kids for most of the 70-minute runtime. Jake Gyllenhaal gets deliciously weird as Mr. Music, and there’s a tween talk show with Richard Kind, but it’s Mulaney — who foregoes a script in favor of honest, insightful, darkly comedic convos with these kids — who really shines here.
4. Up In The Air (2009)
Run Time: 109 min | IMDb: 7.4/10
It’s hard not to love a good George Clooney movie. Add in a mentorship with Anna Kendrick about the ins-and-outs of traveling the country (to fire people) and a whirlwind romance with Vera Farmiga, and you’ve got travel cinema gold. Jason Reitman’s glance into corporate America and the domestic airports that shuttle workers around the country is an emotionally deft and often hilarious look at life on the road.
5. Kung Fu Hustle (2004)
Run Time: 99 min | IMDb: 7.7/10
The early aughts action-comedy borrows elements from famous Kung Fu films of the ’70s and pairs them with a completely ridiculous plot and some impressive cartoon-style fight sequences to produce a wholly original flick that we guarantee you’ll marvel at. The film follows the exploits of two friends, Sing and Bone, who impersonate gang members in the hopes of joining a gang themselves and inadvertently strike up a gang war that nearly destroys the slums of the city. Of course, the real draw here is the absurdist, over-the-top comedy that takes place during some of the film’s biggest action sequences. It’s laugh-out-loud funny, but only if you check your brain at the door.
6. The Lobster (2015)
Run Time: 119 min | IMDb: 7.1/10
Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz star in this dark, absurdist comedy about a man searching for love under some very strange circumstances. Farrell plays David, a man whose wife recently left him. David is sent to a hotel where he’s told he must find a mate within 45 days or be turned into an animal. While there, David witnesses strange rituals and must follow strict rules in order to find love, but it’s not until he ventures into the woods, where the “loners” live, that he pairs up with a woman (Weisz) who may be his soulmate. It’s weird, eccentric, and the perfect Farrell-starring vehicle.
7. Dolemite Is My Name (2019)
Run Time: 117 min | IMDb: 7.3/10
Eddie Murphy stages a bit of a comeback in this biopic about famed comedian, actor, showman Rudy Ray Moore, better known as Dolemite to fans of his raunchy comedy albums, stand-up tours, and blaxploitation films. Murphy plays Moore at the beginning of his career when he was just a record store clerk looking to break out in the business. He’s joined by a cast that includes Keegan-Michael Key, Ron Cephas Jones, Tituss Burgess, and others, but it’s Murphy who shines here, giving possibly the best performance of his career as a man who will stop at nothing to pursue his dream.
8. Zombieland (2009)
Run Time: 88 min | IMDb: 7.6/10
Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone, and Jesse Eisenberg star in this zom-com about a group of survivors traveling the country together during the zombie apocalypse. Eisenberg plays Columbus, a nerdy kid who believes if he sticks to his rules, he’ll make it out of this thing alive. Harrelson plays Tallahassee, a man on an odd mission, and Stone plays Wichita, a grifter, and con-artist with her own reasons for joining the pair. It’s a gore-filled riot that knows how to make fun of itself.
9. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)
Run Time: 112 min | IMDb: 7.5/10
Edgar Wright’s 2010 action comedy about a hapless boy who must defeat evil ex-boyfriends in order to win the hand of the girl he loves is a fast-paced ride that bombards the senses. Michael Cera plays a loveable goof in the titular hero, a young man enamored with a woman named Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead). In order to be with his lady love, Scott must fight her evil exes, six guys, one girl, who challenge him to truly strange contests. The film is a cinematic mash-up of Japanese anime and gamer culture, intended for the crowd who grew up on Nintendo and comic books, but it brings plenty of laughs all the same.
10. Men In Black (1997)
Run Time: 98 min | IMDb: 7.3/10
We should all hail the casting genius who threw Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones together in this sci-fi action flick about a police officer who joins a secret government organization in charge of monitoring extraterrestrial activity on Earth. That’s because the two bros – Smith, the wise-cracking rookie, and Jones, the seasoned veteran – have an almost otherworldly kind of chemistry on screen. Watching them bicker like an old married couple is almost more fun than witnessing them take down alien monsters intent on subjugating our planet.
11. Edge of Seventeen (2016)
Run Time: 104 min | IMDb: 7.4/10
Hailee Steinfeld stars in this teenage dramedy about a socially-awkward high school student whose world comes crashing down around her when her best friend begins hooking up with her older, more popular brother. Steinfeld’s Nadine is the cringe-worthy loner that so many John Hughes films were built around, but her life becomes even more unbearable when she loses her best friend to her brother and accidentally sexts her crush. What makes this film stand out from the other teenage soap operas currently housed on Netflix is the addition of Woody Harrelson as Nadine’s sarcastic, apathetic teacher, who gives her the worst kind of advice, and Steinfeld’s acting, a perfect blend of comedic intuitiveness and reserved emotion.
12. The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs (2009)
Run Time: 133 min | IMDb: 7.3/10
The Coen brothers are back with a slick new Western romp, one that serves as an ode to all of the tropes present in Hollywood’s best Wild West adaptations. Split into six parts, each story is loosely connected although thematically and tonally different. Tim Blake Nelson stars as the titular hero, a sharpshooting songster who takes part in the film’s opening musical portion. From there, we get stories of outlaws getting their due, prospectors mining for gold, ghostly hauntings, and wagon trails. Forget trying to follow the thread and simply enjoy the ride with this one.
13. Bad Boys (1995)
Run Time: 119 min | IMDb: 6.9/10
Will Smith and Martin Lawrence star in this foul-mouthed buddy comedy film as two detectives tasked with protecting a witness while investigating a case of stolen heroin from their own precinct’s evidence storage facility. Marcus (Lawrence) and Mike (Smith) have been friends since childhood and are now working the beat together in Miami. When $100 million of heroin goes missing from their unit’s storage facility, they’re sent to track down who might have taken it before Internal Affairs intercedes. Smith and Lawrence have an easy, lived-in chemistry that really sells this thing, and the action’s not too bad either.
14. Tucker & Dale Vs. Evil (2010)
Run Time: 88 min | IMDb: 7.6/10
This indie comedy has quickly become a cult classic, turning familiar scary movie tropes on their heads in bloody and hilarious ways. Alan Tudyk and Tyler Labine star as two bumbling-yet-well-meaning hillbillies who get pulled into a nightmare scenario when a group of horny coeds think they’re trying to kill them. In a series of events that escalates in violence, Tucker and Dale try to do the right thing while managing to stay alive in the process. As one of the best horror comedies, it’s a hidden gem waiting to be discovered by those looking for off-the-beaten-path hilarity.
15. Young Adult (2011)
Run Time: 94 min | IMDb: 6.3/10
Charlize Theron stars in this comedy about a woman behaving badly, like steal your husband badly. Mavis (Theron) is a fiction writer living in the big city who returns to her small hometown after a divorce intent on rekindling a romance with her high school boyfriend (Patrick Wilson). The man’s got a wife and a new baby, but Mavis is sure a couple of sexy outfits, shots, and a rock concert can change that. She gets “guidance” from an old acquaintance (a delightful Patton Oswalt), but really, the point of this movie is to prove women can be just as sloppy and unhinged as men can be, so don’t expect some grand “seeing-the-light” moment.
16. Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999)
Run Time: 95 min | IMDb: 6.6/10
Mike Meyers returns as the international man of mystery in this ’90s comedy with Heather Graham. Dr. Evil is back too and he’s stolen Austin Powers’ all-important mojo with a handy time-travel device, so he and Agent Felicity Shagwell (Graham) must travel back to the ’60s to recover it and stop Evil from ending the world. Jerry Springer, Mini-Me, and Fat Bastard all make an appearance but the draw is watching Meyers add a different look to the character as he struggles to find his sexy again.
17. Swiss Army Man (2016)
Run Time: 97 min | IMDb: 7/10
If you like your wanderlust just a bit on the weird side, may we recommend this adventure comedy starring Paul Dano and Daniel Radcliffe. Dano plays Hank, a man marooned on an island, ready to commit suicide, before a corpse washes ashore. Radcliffe plays the dead man, whom Hank soon befriends and discovers he can manipulate like a Swiss Army Knife. As Hank treks through the wilderness in search of civilization, he uses the corpse, which slowly comes to life, goes by the name Manny, and, at one point, is used as a jet-ski powered by uncontrollable flatulence, to reconnect with the world around him. It’s strange, there’s lots of farting, but there’s also some great Survivor Man-type of adventuring going on.
18. Goon (2011)
Run Time: 91 min | IMDb: 6.8/10
Goon proves that a movie about hockey can not only be hilariously profane, but it can also be kind of sweet. Doug Glatt (Sean Williams Scott) is so dumb, but so incredibly nice that it’s impossible to root against him. When it becomes clear that he has a real affinity for punching the hell out of people, he gets recruited onto a semi-pro hockey team as an enforcer. Tired of being labeled the family loser, Doug just wants to find his thing, and it turns out, hockey is definitely that thing. Even those rolled their eyes at Scott’s Stifler shtick in the American Pie movies will be pleasantly surprised at what he brings to the table in this film, an extremely funny twist on the traditional underdog sports tale.
19. Step Brothers (2008)
Run Time: 98 min | IMDb: 6.9/10
Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly team up for this absurd comedy about a pair of middle-aged men still living at home with their parents. Ferrell’s Brennan is a sheltered mama’s boy while Reilly’s Dale is just a lazy slob. The two are forced to become roommates when their parents get hitched, a living situation that sparks plenty of problems and some hilarious pranks that end with the two finally getting their sh*t together in time for the f*cking Catalina Wine Mixer.
20. The Waterboy (1998)
Run Time: 89 min | IMDb: 6.1/10
Remember when we used to like Adam Sandler? Sure, his comedies were never high art, but you still find yourself quoting them to this very day. The Waterboy is the classic example of this comfortable familiarity. Sandler mugs his way through his performance as a football team’s waterboy who gets a shot at playing due to his ability to channel his rage into unexpected prowess on the field, and you’ll find yourself cocooned in the welcoming embrace of ’90s nostalgia.
21. Obvious Child (2014)
Run Time: 84 min | IMDb: 6.8/10
Jenny Slate is one of the more underrated comedians in the game right now, but she proved herself a capable leading lady in Gillian Robespierre’s indie rom-com, Obvious Child. Slate plays Donna, a young hopeful trying to make it in the world of stand-up. She frequents a few undergrounds around New York City, honing her set while disappointing her successful academic mother by phoning it in at a used bookstore in Brooklyn for her regular 9-5. She has a brief and promising love affair with Max (Jake Lacy) before facing a dilemma: an unplanned pregnancy. There aren’t many films that can tackle the sensitive topic of abortion with dignity, grace, and a ton of poop jokes, so you’ll want to check this one out.
22. 50/50 (2011)
Run Time: 100 min | IMDb: 7.7/10
Seth Rogen and Joseph Gordon-Levitt star in this dramedy based on a true story about a 27-year-old guy battling cancer, and the friend that tries to support him along the way. Levitt plays Adam, a reserved young man facing a cancer diagnosis that requires a risky surgical operation to cure. Rogen plays his best friend Kyle, an outspoken slacker who uses his friend’s illness to pick up women. The two share some darkly comedic jabs on the topic that’ll have you laughing out loud, even though you probably shouldn’t.
23. Hot Rod (2007)
Run Time: 88 min | IMDb: 6.7/10
Saturday Night Live vet Andy Samberg recruits some of his fellow former cast members to join in the fun for this action-comedy about a guy named Rod Kimble who fancies himself a daredevil. Rod is readying to attempt his biggest stunt yet — jumping over 15 school buses — to raise money for his stepdad’s upcoming heart operation. The laughs come when Samberg — and Bill Hader, Isla Fisher, Danny McBride, Will Arnett, and Chris Parnell — try to pull this thing off despite Rod’s hilarious lack of athletic ability or talent.
24. Someone Great (2019)
Run Time: 92 min | IMDb: 6.2/10
Gina Rodriguez, Brittany Snow, and DeWanda Wise team up for this romantic comedy about a young woman’s final hurrah before leaving NYC. Rodriguez plays a journalist named Jenny who must pack up her life, leave her friends, and travel to the West Coast for an exciting job opportunity. Unfortunately for her, her boyfriend of nearly 10 years decides to call it quits, which leaves Jenny on the party warpath, determined to have one final night of fun before her big trip. Lakeith Stanfield also stars in this, and with Netflix’s pretty stellar rom-com track record lately, bet on this being a fun watch.
25. Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle (2004)
Run Time: 88 min | IMDb: 7.1/10
Some comedies are thoughtful, incisive works of art that tell relatable stories about the human condition through humor. This is not that kind of comedy. Instead, John Cho and Kal Penn have the time of their lives getting high and hunting for mini burgers as Harold (Cho), an uptight office worker, and Kumar, (Penn) his stoner buddy.
26. The Incredible Jessica James (2017)
Run Time: 83 min | IMDb: 6.5/10
Anyone who caught Jessica Williams during her tenure on The Daily Show knows that she’s destined for greatness. Despite being so young, she had a confidence, a voice, and a commanding presence that you just can’t fake. The Incredible Jessica James is her first starring vehicle since her time as a correspondent, and it is a true testament to where she’s headed. In a clever look at the life of a struggling playwright who is getting over a breakup, The Incredible Jessica James allows Williams to unleash her fire in the most charming way possible, and she and Chris O’Dowd have an easy chemistry that makes you root for them to make it despite not having a thing in common. Having just come out last year, The Incredible Jessica James is still one of the best comedy movies Netflix has delivered.
27. Junebug (2005)
Run Time: 106 min | IMDb: 7/10
A fresh-faced Amy Adams stars in this family dramedy about an art dealer from Chicago who travels South, meets her new husband’s family, and must contend with the unknowns in their fairly-new romance. Embeth Davidtz plays Madeleine, a gallery owner pursuing an up-and-coming artist who just happens to live in the same town as her new in-laws. She spends time with them as she courts the artist, befriending the wife of her brother-in-law (Adams) and slowly discovering how little she knows about her husband and his relatives. It’s messy and complicated, which makes it all the funnier, and Adams is a stand-out.
28. Charlie’s Angels (2000)
Run Time: 98 min | IMDb: 5.5/10
Lucy Liu, Cameron Diaz, and Drew Barrymore star in this spy comedy about the famed women detectives who work for a mysterious benefactor simply named Charlie. The girls are in charge of bringing down the bad guys while Charlie fund the jobs, and his assistant Bosley (a delightful Bill Murray) manages the day-to-day stuff. In this case, day-to-day stuff includes jumping out of airplanes onto speed boats, breaking into secure, high-tech vaults, and preventing an evil mastermind from controlling the world. The laughs come thanks to Diaz’s ditsy agent and Murray’s gift for improv.
29. Sleeping with Other People (2015)
Run Time: 101 min | IMDb: 6.5/10
Jason Sudeikis and Alison Brie star in this hilarious rom-com about a couple of sex addicts who find love with each other after some obligatory mishaps, of course. Brie is Lainey, a young woman (cheating on her boyfriend with a married man), who goes to a meeting for sex addicts and runs into the man she lost her virginity in college to, Jake (Sudeikis). The two become friends again, end up falling for each other, and go through some pretty rough sh*t before they’re able to make a go for it. Sudeikis proves himself capable of leading-man status, and Brie banks on the kind of neurotic comedy she’s known for, so despite a sometimes lack-luster script, this one works.
30. Always Be My Maybe (2019)
Run Time: 101 min | IMDb: 6.8/10
Ali Wong and Randall Park star in the latest rom-com from Netflix. This time around, the plot follows two childhood sweethearts who’ve spent the last 15 years apart and try to reconnect when one moves back home. Wong plays a successful chef opening a new restaurant in San Francisco while Park plays her former best friend still living at home and working for his dad. Both have some growing up to do, but the film eschews classic romcom tropes for bits that are funnier and more poignant than your average lighthearted fare.
Recent Changes Through January 2020:
Removed: Wet Hot American Summer
Added: Edge Of Seventeen