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Dolemite is my Name
Photograph: Netflix

The 14 best comedies on Netflix right now

The biggest laughs lurking in your queue.

Joshua Rothkopf
Written by
Andy Kryza
Written by
Joshua Rothkopf
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Finding a great comedy on Netflix is like searching for a needle in a haystack, only this particular haystack is overflowing with half-assed parodies and try-hard gross-out spectacles. Throw in an algorith that can't tell a solid action comedy from an unintentionally hilarous JCVD vehicle and you're essentially playing Russian roulette with your funnybone. To ease your scroll time, we've scoured the streamer and come up with the 14 best comedies currently available, from Oscar-winning dramedies to ’80s classics, whip-smart satires and more. We can't guarantee you'll be ROTFL, but you're sure to find the chuckles you seek on the list below. 

RECOMMENDED: See all of the best movies on Netflix

Best comedies on Netflix

Lady Bird (2017)
Photograph: A24

1. Lady Bird (2017)

Director: Greta Gerwig

Cast: Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, Lucas Hedges, Timothée Chamalet, Beanie Feldstein

Quite possibly one of the best comedies of the past decade, Lady Bird is phenomenal for many reasons. The material is fresh, creative and previously unexplored; Gerwig's directing is the stuff of cinematic legend and the cast of actors is outstanding. 

The Death of Stalin (2017)
Photograph: Gaumont

2. The Death of Stalin (2017)

Director: Armando Iannucci

Cast: Steve Buscemi, Jason Isaacs, Simon Russell Beale, Jeffrey Tambor

A grotesque display of silliness and comedy, this Armando Iannucci film focuses on October 1953 in the Soviet Union, when the country got rid of its totalitarian leader of three decades. Yes, we promise you'll laugh.

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  • Film
  • Comedy

Director: Steven Spielberg

Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Christopher Walkern

Perhaps Steven Spielberg’s most singularly breezy non-blockbuster, Catch Me If You Can is a miraculously fleet-footed affair, a film that plays out like a sugar-coated companion piece to Goodellas. Capitalising on Leonardo DiCaprio’s boyish charm for the last time before the star got into bison gnawing and other grittier fare, this globe-trotting, pastel-hued conman opus is a cat-and-mouse game between DiCaprio’s real-life hustler Frank Abagnale and Tom Hank’s dogged G-man, with Christopher Walken serving as the beating, punctuation-averse heart of one of Spielberg’s best.

Bad Trip (2020)
Photograph: Netflix

4. Bad Trip (2020)

Director Kitao Sakurai

Cast Eric André, Tiffany Haddish, Lil Rel Howery

On paper, Bad Trip sounds a lot like a tired mix of Borat and Bad Grandpa, featuring a lovesick Eric André on a road trip interacting with real people via elaborate pranks involving crashed cars, projectile vomit and plenty of nudity. What a surprise, then, when the film reveals itself not as a ‘gotcha’ flick seeking to show the dark underbelly of the American south, but rather one in which its marks prove to be kind, helpful and empathetic. The movie is uneven, but when the laughs hit, they hit hard, all while positioning Bad Trip as an unexpected feel-good comedy classic.

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Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
  • Film
  • Comedy

Directors: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones

Cast: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, John Cleese, Graham Chapman, Eric Idle, Michael Palin

The Pythons stick a big fat skewer into religious intolerance in their most controversial (unless you’re a medieval French knight, in which case it’d be The Holy Grail) and arguably, funniest film. Brian Cohen (Graham Chapman) is the young Jewish man who lives next door to Jesus and is mistaken for the messiah by a swelling army of followers. Of course, the more he tells them he’s not, the more devoted they become. The cross and a rousing singalong of ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’ await.

Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)
  • Film
  • Comedy

Director: John Hughes

Cast: Matthew Broderick, Mia Sara, Alan Ruck

Thirty-five years on, Ferris Bueller remains a superhero of the ‘80s teen-comedy canon: An unrepentant sociopath who leverages his overflowing charisma to full-stop manipulate an entire Chicago suburb to bend to his whims. Sure, in all likelihood Ferris probably grew up to be a Republican congressman (or a serial killer), but like Alan Ruck’s put-upon best friend, it’s impossible not to go along for the ride… especially when there’s a rare Ferrari waiting in the garage. 

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School of Rock (2003)
  • Film
  • Comedy

Director: Richard Linklater

Cast: Jack Black, Mike White, Joan Cusack

Jack Black toned down his Tenacious D persona for a family audience with this Sister Act riff from Richard Linklater, and the result is an all-time feel-good comedy, as much a celebration of classic rock as the director’s hangout opus Dazed & Confused. As a burnout masquerading as a substitute music teacher, Black’s energy is cranked up well beyond 11, but it proves the perfect fit for this prep-school Bad News Bears-style story about music’s ability to not only rock your socks off, but to help kids find their inner voice. 

Dolemite is my Name (2019)
Photograph: Netflix

8. Dolemite is my Name (2019)

Director: Craig Brewer

Cast: Eddie Murphy, Wesley Snipes, Keegan Mike Epps

Eddie Murphy fulfils his destiny to don the shimmering hat of Blaxploitation star Rudy Ray Moore in Craig Brewer’s dense, often hilarious biopic that chronicles the rise of the legendary kung-fu star, low-budget auteur and bonafide ladies’ man. Seemingly taking Moore’s signature Disco Godfather plea to ‘put your weight on it‘ fully to heart, Murphy delivers one of his most nuanced performances in the title role. Brewer smartly surrounds the comedy god with capable supporting players (Wesely Snipes damn near steals the thing) while developing a rich period tapestry that fully immerses viewers into the seedier side of ‘70s entertainment, crafting a film of a piece with Boogie Nights.

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  • Film
  • Animation

Director: Trey Parker

Cast: Trey Parker, Matt Stone

Still just as dirty, offensive, delirious and hysterical as it was when it was released nearly 20 years ago, no film of its era has benefited from America’s political inertia quite like this satire of jingoism, celebrity hubris and Michael Bay movies. Is it sad that Team America plays with the same razor sharp wit as it did 20 years ago? Absolutely. But in an era where the ‘America: Fuck Yeah’ mentality has only grown scarier, Sean Penn is still politically grandstanding and the US is still boondoggling in Afghanistan, it’s taken on a timeless quality, serving as a much-needed kick in the teeth to every target in its sights. 

  • Film
  • Comedy

Director: Kinka Usher

Cast: Ben Stiller, William H Macy, Hank Azaria, Claire Forlani

Released in 1999, Mystery Men preceded today’s comic book-dominated blockbuster landscape by a solid decade, and flopped spectacularly. But long before the likes of Kick-Ass and Super introduced the comedic potential of everyday people squeezing into tights to punch crime in the face, Mystery Men’s stacked cast of comic greats – Ben Stiller, Ben Stiller, William H Macy, Hank Azaria, Eddie Izzard, Janeane Garofalo, Geoffrey Rush, Greg Kinnear, Tom Waits – delivered a superhero takedown that is now in dire need of reappraisal. 

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Hunt For The Wilderpeople (2016)
  • Film
  • Comedy

Director: Taika Waititi

Cast: Sam Neill, Julian Dennison, Rachel House

Before he conjured a Thor film from a potion of Zeppelin album covers and LSD, Kiwi director Taiki Waititi took on this endearing tale of an orphan on the lam with a grizzled father-figure. The film expands on the indie chops presented in Boy and Eagle Vs. Shark and emerges as a twee, Wes Andersonian tale of outsiders finding solace in one another. Slight though it may be, Waititi’s film plays out like a heartwarming live-action Pixar flick, a Up-lite adventure that proves that the director doesn’t need Marvel money to craft a film full of rich characters and inventive action. 

The Forty-Year-Old Version (2020)
Photograph: Netflix

12. The Forty-Year-Old Version (2020)

Director: Radha Blank

Cast: Radha Blank, Peter Kim, Imani Lewis

If you took 8 Mile and made it about a middle-aged female playwright trying to muscle in on the rap game, it might look a little like this Sundance award winner. It’s a pitch-perfect intro to Radha Blank, writer-actor-star of an autobiographical comedy-drama that tackles creative compromise, the Black experience, hip hop and theatre culture and a fair few big laughs in its exploration of New York’s not-that-rich and not-quite-famous. TLDR? She’s great.

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  • Film
  • Comedy

Director: David Dobkin

Cast: Will Ferrell, Rachel McAdams, Dan Stevens

Eurovision gave viewers exactly what they needed in the middle of the pandemic: A shot of Will Ferrell silliness surrounded by a surprisingly earnest entry into Europe’s extremely befuddling (for Americans, at least) pop-culture Olympics. What could have been another eye-rolling exercise in questionable European accents instead unfurled as a legitimately touching underdog saga masquerading as another comedy in the Talladega Nights mold, and while it’s a bit uneven, it’s impossible not to get pulled into the siren song of ‘Jaja Ding-Dong.’ 

Murder Mystery (2019)
Photograph: Netflix

14. Murder Mystery (2019)

Director: Kyle Newacheck

Cast: Adam Sandler, Jennifer Aniston, Luke Evans

A bit silly but still entertaining, this Netflix production was one of the first semi-successful attempts at comedy releases by the streaming giant. Adam Sandler is a New York police officer who takes his wife Audrey (Jennifer Aniston) on a European vacation that turns out to be anything but relaxing.

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