For many of us, there’s nothing more relaxing and enjoyable than settling on the couch and watching a comedy that’s actually funny. Dramas can drag, action movies can be over-the-top, and horror films are designed to be stressful. Comedies are fun and, more often than not, predictable — but that’s not a bad thing. Not every cinematic experience needs to be an adventure, and sometimes you just want a good laugh.
Choose another category
Luckily, Netflix’s repository of movies has grown quite large, though we can’t blame you if you don’t want to spend hours searching for the right film. The streaming service offers dozens of American Pie-style teen comedies, not to mention a slew of B-movies you’ll never want to sit through, and it can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to look. To make your choice a bit easier, we’ve done all the legwork on your behalf. These are the best comedies on Netflix.
The web comedy series Between Two Ferns mines a lot of laughs from its simple premise: Zach Galifianakis interviews celebrities for a dingy public access show, asking increasingly rude and bizarre questions. It’s a great premise for a 5-minute video, but can it translate to a full-length film? Yes, as it turns out. Between Two Ferns: The Movie retains the cruelly humorous spirit of the show, but fleshes things out, following Galifianakis and his crew of oddballs — including Lauren Lapkus as his put-upon assistant — as they film a documentary about the making of the show. Things go off the rails quickly — Galifianakis temporarily kills Matthew McConaughey — and the show must hit the road in search of more celebrity interviews. It’s a funny, zany film that goes to some wild places.
Pineapple Express is a classic stoner film, directed by David Gordon Green, and written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. It stars Rogen and James Franco as a process server and his marijuana dealer who are forced to flee from hitmen and a corrupt police officer (Cleo King) after they witness a murder. A buddy comedy slash stoner flick with plenty of action, Pineapple Express is a hilarious film made even better by Franco’s surprising comedic timing. Won’t take our word for it? Pineapple Express was the first marijuana-themed comedy to gross over hundred million dollars worldwide and was even nominated for a Golden Globe.
Whoever said history couldn’t be funny? Especially when you have the irreverent comedy group known as Monty Python behind the helm. Monty Python and the Holy Grail parodies the well-known King Arthur legend in this absurd British comedy as Arthur (Graham Chapman) and his knights search far and wide for the mythical Holy Grail. The imminently quotable movie which gave us beauties like “It’s just a flesh wound” and more went on to gross more than any British film exhibited in the U.S. in 1975 and was followed by three films and the Tony Award-winning play, Spamalot.
Who could have imagined that, in 2017, someone would draw upon 14th-century Italian poet Boccaccio to make a raunchy sex comedy? Renaissance scholars, that’s who, and they got their vindication with The Little Hours, a film from Jeff Baena (Life After Beth, I Heart Huckabees), who recognized that Boccaccio’s The Decameron was as filthy and hilarious as any comedy film made in recent years. The Little Hours takes place largely at a convent in Italy in 1347, where nuns Alessandra (Alison Brie), Ginevra (Kate Micucci), and Fernanda (Aubrey Plaza), try to live pious lives despite their very un-pious attitudes. When a young man named Massetto (Dave Franco) arrives at the convent, taking the job of a gardener, the cloistered nuns get a bit … excited. With its incredible cast (in addition to the aforementioned, the film includes John C. Reilly, Fred Armisen, and Nick Offerman, among others) and unique inspiration, The Little Hours is a standout comedy.
These days, the late Doug Kenney is not a household name, yet his comedies have become some of the most iconic of all time. The Harvard grad co-founded National Lampoon magazine in the early ’70s and later penned seminal films such as Animal House and Caddyshack, only to fall into obscurity in the decades since. Director David Wain (Wet Hot American Summer) puts Kenney’s madcap career under the knife in A Futile and Stupid Gesture, while assembling a host of modern-day actors to play legendary comedians like Chevy Chase (Joel McHale) and Bill Murray (Jon Daly). It’s a somewhat surface-level biopic — it churns through the highlights more than anything else — but Will Forte is commendable as Kenney, who was as absurd as he was brilliant.
Part crime drama, part dark comedy, In Bruges follows two hitmen who are in hiding after their latest “hit” goes awry. Ray (Colin Farrell) and Ken (Brendan Gleeson) must hide out in Bruges, a charming city in Belgium, for two weeks awaiting further instruction from their boss, Harry (Ralph Fiennes). As they settle in, they realize that maybe the hitman life isn’t for them. Ray has met a girl that he likes, and Ken has found a new appreciation for the simpler life. But Harry is none too pleased and travels to Bruges to knock some sense into them — aka kill them. Will they get to live their fantasy life in Bruges, or meet their demise?
Before Clueless and Mean Girls, there was Heathers, a cult classic that takes aim at high-school cliques, culture, and teenage suicide through a downright cynical lens. The morbid black comedy follows one Veronica Sawyer (Winona Ryder), a popular high-school student who begins dating a sociopath named “J.D.” (Christian Slater), only to get wrapped up in a series of grisly murders that have been carefully masked as suicides. Although the bleak plot mostly focuses on the demise of three of Sawyer’s so-called friends (each named Heather), screenwriter Daniel Waters still manages to address the film’s more sadistic themes with a kind of self-aware humor that — sadly — just isn’t present in today’s teenage comedies.
The Coen Brothers have, over the years, perfected a very simple recipe for comedy: Take characters who think they’re smarter than they are and throw them into a situation that goes way over their heads. In Burn After Reading, the comedy of errors begins when CIA analyst Osbourne Cox (John Malkovich) quits his job rather than take a demotion, opting to work on a memoir. His unfaithful wife, Katie (Tilda Swinton) decides to divorce him, making a copy of his important files, which fall into the hands of two gym employees, Linda (Frances McDormand) and Chad (Brad Pitt), who figure they can get a ransom from Cox. Their ham-handed attempt to sell state secrets quickly goes awry. The Coens’ writing is as sharp as ever, and the all-star cast gives outstanding performances.
A Netflix original movie, The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter, is a father-son bonding movie starring Josh Brolin and newcomer Montana Jordan. Buck, a hunter made famous for his popular TV show and hunting whitetail deer, decides that it’s time to take his estranged son out for his first hunting trip. Along for the ride is Buck’s cameraman, Don (Danny McBride), who documents the trip as it doesn’t pan out the way Buck expected. This lighthearted comedy shows the lengths to which a father will go to connect with his son.
- Here are the best horror movies on Netflix right now (October 2019)
- The best movies on Netflix right now
- The best horror movies streaming right now
- The best romance movies on Netflix (October 2019)
- These are the best action movies on Netflix right now (October 2019)