100 best comedy movies: the list

The 100 best comedy movies, picked by experts from across film, TV and comedy

0

Comments

Add +

By Tom Huddleston, David Jenkins, Adam Lee Davies, Derek Adams, Edward Lawrenson, Wally Hammond, Ben Walters, Gabriel Tate and Phil Harrison. Explore the individual top tens of every contributor.

9

Some Like it Hot (1959)

Dir Billy Wilder (Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon)

‘Real diamonds! They must be worth their weight in gold!’

IAL Diamond’s scripts for director Billy Wilder certainly were sparklers. He worked wonders converting the source material of an unpublished story and a laugh-free German farce into this most glorious of Prohibition-era gender-benders. It helped, of course, that everybody involved in the movie was also at the top of their game – including Monroe, despite the on-set mayhem she caused for Wilder. In the event, Monroe turned in the most touching and vulnerable (rather than humorous) performance of her career, as the ukelele-strumming, gin-addicted Sugar, always the receiver of the fuzzy end of life’s lollipop.

As musicians disguised as women in a ruse to escape the mob, Tony Curtis (as Josephine) looked like he was having fun, while Jack Lemmon went overboard as Daphne – ‘We wouldn’t be caught dead with men. Rough, hairy beasts! Eight hands. And they...they all just want one thing from a girl!’ – finding his master in Wilder, with whom he went on to make seven films. And if Wilder himself knew Thurber’s definition of humour – emotional chaos remembered in tranquillity – he majored in the former and jettisoned the latter, fairly delighting in the script’s innuendo and cross-dressing confusions, producing one of the finest, funniest and most audacious comedies of the ’50s. Charles Lang should have won an Oscar for his superb black-and-white cinematography, as should Ted Hayworth for his spot-on period recreations. In the event, the film won one sole Oscar – for Orry-Kelly’s flapper costumes  – but then nobody’s perfect, not even the Academy. WH


Users say

13 comments
Steve
Steve

Its a good list, but very culture specific. Telling from this list you guys are likely about 40 and you're all white and have mostly liked the same movies for decades... I'm going to check out a few that I don't know very well, but I think you guys need to think outside of the box... or at least outside of the window - the world is a pretty diverse place and 'funny' is everywhere. (4 lions maybe an exception)

Kenny
Kenny

Do you guys even like movies?

william mayer
william mayer

Zoolander is higher than Happy gilmore enough said...

Pat
Pat

Good list! Few films I don't feel deserve a place, some films I'd put higher up then they are. This list has some seriously great comedies! It's painful seeing people upset at the absence of film's such as "Soul Plane." In the comments.

Cloé
Cloé

love that list!

Ally
Ally

Wait a minute... Talladega Nights didn't make the list and trading places did? This list is so out of date, none of the fridays either, or cheech and chong, "O Brother Where Art Thou?"... We should be able to vote on lists like these. Good job btw (Y)

anonymous
anonymous

Notable lack of "urban" comedies.

anonymus
anonymus

soul plane? barbershop? friday? friday the next?

Hughes
Hughes

give me the rest

agee
agee

Why so much Steve Martin and so little (or no?) Danny Devito? Where's Tin Men, for example? Better than lots of movies listed here. Since some classics were included, where's It Happened One Night? King of Comedy could have been left out. While a good film, it's not really a comedy (Sandra Bernhard's hilarious scene notwithstanding, I think I would take Being There over King of Comedy for a quasi comdedy) Big Lebowski is a good pick but "O Brother Where Art Thou?" definitely beats out a bunch of films listed here--for quality, laughs, and music.

walte
walte

wtf where is five

dra
dra

where is stepbrothers

Spotify

Subscribe to Time Out London on Spotify for daily playlists and recommendations from our Music team.

 

 

Pinterest

We feature London's most spectacular sights and coolest locations.