17 Must-Watch Iconic Comedies

Comedy movies have been bringing joy and uniting the audience for decades. From slapstick to satire, the range of comedy flicks is fascinating. Some of the movies also deliver important social messages dipped in humor.

Let’s take a look at 17 classic comedy movies that are all-time favorites. All have great ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and are must-watches.

Young Frankenstein (1974)

Image Credit: IMDB © 1974 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Mel Brooks’ “Young Frankenstein” is a masterful parody of classic horror films. Its witty script and memorable performances have cemented it as a comedy classic. The film’s black-and-white cinematography pays homage to the original Frankenstein movies. Its clever humor and affectionate parody have delighted audiences for generations.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 94%

Dr. Strangelove (1964)

Image Credit: IMDB Photo by © Sony/Columbia Industries Inc. – © Sony/Columbia Industries Inc.

Stanley Kubrick’s “Dr. Strangelove ” is a brilliant satire of political absurdity. Peter Sellers’ performance in multiple roles is a standout aspect of the film. Its dark humor and sharp wit critique the Cold War mentality. “Dr. Strangelove ” remains a timeless piece relevant in any era.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 98%

Friday (1995)

Image Credit: IMDB Photo by New Line – © 1995 New Line Cinema.

“Friday” offers a humorous look at life in Los Angeles, mixing humor with social commentary. Ice Cube and Chris Tucker’s dynamic performances make for an unforgettable duo. The film balances comedy with moments of genuine insight and warmth. “Friday” has become a cultural touchstone, celebrated for its quotable lines and characters.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 76%

Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

Image Credit: IMDB © 1975. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

This film is a cornerstone of British comedy, known for its take on the Arthurian legend. Its iconic scenes and quotes have permeated pop culture. “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” is well-known for its comedy and creativity.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 96%

The Jerk (1979)

Image Credit: Adobe Stock

Steve Martin’s performance in “The Jerk” is a comedic tour de force, showcasing his unique style. The film follows Navin Johnson’s hilariously misguided journey to find himself. Its blend of slapstick and satire has endeared it to audiences. “The Jerk” is a classic rags-to-riches story with a comedic twist.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 82%

Coming to America (1988)

Image Credit: IMDB © 1988 Paramount HE

Eddie Murphy shines in “Coming to America,” playing multiple memorable characters. The film’s humor cleverly addresses themes of identity, culture, and love. Its engaging story and vibrant performances have made it a beloved comedy. “Coming to America” is a testament to Murphy’s versatility and comedic genius.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 73%

Sullivan’s Travels (1941)

Image Credit: Adobe Stock

“Sullivan’s Travels” combines social commentary with screwball comedy elements. The film explores the importance of laughter during hard times. Its clever narrative and poignant message resonate deeply with audiences. “Sullivan’s Travels” is a classic that highlights the power of comedy.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 100%

Airplane! (1980)

Image Credit: IMDB © 1980 – Paramount Pictures

“Airplane!” is a masterclass in parody, poking fun at disaster movies with its deadpan humor. Its rapid-fire gags and absurd situations have set the standard for spoof comedies. The film’s lasting impact has an influence on its quotability and influence on comedy. “Airplane!” remains one of the funniest movies ever made, thanks to its relentless humor.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 97%

Office Space (1999)

Image Credit: IMDB © 1999-Twentieth Century

Mike Judge’s “Office Space” satirizes corporate culture and the mundanity of 9-to-5 jobs. Its depiction of office life is both hilarious and painfully relatable. The film has become a cult classic, resonating with anyone who’s ever felt stuck in a rut. “Office Space” captures the absurdity of the modern workplace with sharp wit.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 81%

Bridesmaids (2011)

Image Credit: IMDB Photo by Suzanne Hanover – © 2011 Universal Studios.

“Bridesmaids” broke new ground for female-led comedies with its humor and relatable characters. The film’s exploration of friendship and personal growth amid chaos is brilliantly executed. Its success has paved the way for more comedies starring and written by women. “Bridesmaids” is well-known for its emotional depth and groundbreaking impact.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 90%

This Is Spinal Tap (1984)

Image Credit: IMDB © Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.

“This Is Spinal Tap” is a mockumentary that chronicles the misadventures of a rock band. Its satirical take on the music industry and rock documentaries is genius. The film’s improvised dialogue contributes to its authentic and spontaneous humor. “This Is Spinal Tap” has become a cult classic, influencing the mockumentary genre.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 96%

It Happened One Night (1934)

Image Credit: IMDB Photo by Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images – © 2013 Silver Screen Collection

“It Happened One Night” is a pioneer that set the template for romantic comedies. Its witty dialogue and performances by Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert are timeless. The film’s story of an unlikely romance has enchanted audiences for decades. “It Happened One Night” remains a benchmark for the genre.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 98%

Clueless (1995)

Image Credit: IMDB © 1995 Paramount HE.

“Clueless” is a modern twist on Jane Austen’s “Emma,” set in 1990s Beverly Hills. Its sharp satire of teen life and pop culture is smart and entertaining. The film’s fashion and lingo have become iconic. “Clueless” is a beloved teen comedy that transcends its era.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 81%

Little Miss Sunshine (2006)

Image Credit: IMDB © 2006 Twentieth Century Fox

“Little Miss Sunshine” is a heartwarming tale of a dysfunctional family on a road trip. Its mix of humor and drama captures the complexities of family life. The film’s ensemble cast delivers memorable performances. “Little Miss Sunshine” is well-known for its humor, heart, and humanity.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 91%

How to Marry a Millionaire (1953)

Image Credit: Adobe Stock

This classic comedy stars Marilyn Monroe, Lauren Bacall, and Betty Grable in a quest for love. Its witty script and charismatic performances have made it a timeless favorite. The film’s blend of humor and romance is effortlessly charming. “How to Marry a Millionaire” is a delightful exploration of friendship and ambition.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 85%

Napoleon Dynamite (2004)

Image Credit: IMDB © 2004 Twentieth Century Fox

“Napoleon Dynamite” is a quirky tale of a teenager navigating high school life. Its unique humor and style have garnered a dedicated following. The film’s charm lies in its celebration of individuality and eccentricity. “Napoleon Dynamite” is a cult classic that resonates with anyone who’s ever felt out of place.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 72%

Polyester (1981)

Image Credit: IMDB © New Line Cinema.

John Waters’ “Polyester” is a satirical comedy that blends camp and melodrama. Its outrageous humor and unique sensibility showcase Waters’ distinctive style. The film’s exploration of suburban life is both funny and insightful. “Polyester” is a cult classic that challenges traditional tastes with its bold comedy.

  • Rotten Tomatoes rating: 94%
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