Everybody needs a good laugh from time to time. And there has never been a greater variety or variety of comedies to choose from or available at the click of a button between streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and HBO Max.
From romantic comedy like Charade and Dont Go Breaking My Heart to genre-mashing comedy like The Last Action Hero and Freaky, to classics like Tampopo and To Be or Not to Be, we have a wide selection of choices that will bring you laughter and make your night shine.
So, with that in mind, weve sifted through the libraries of the most popular streaming services to bring you our top picks for the 23 best comedies streaming right now. Our latest update included My Cousin Vinny and Singin in the Rain.
Billy Wilders' 1960 comedy is often regarded as one of the greatest films ever made. That reputation is well-deserved.
Bud Baxter (Jack Lemmon) is a solitary office worker who allows his employees to use his property for their extramarital affairs. He believes this will help him grow in the massive insurance company he works for. However, his superiors take advantage of his time and space, leaving Bud unable to sleep in his own bed or access his own home.
Bud falls for an elevator operator in the building (Shirley MacLaine), and his desire to forge a relationship with her gives him the confidence to regain control of his life. However, when Bud discovers she has an affair with his boss (Fred MacMurray), things become even more complicated.
Wilder, a heartfelt and hilarious romantic comedy, cleverly balances corporate fatigue and newfound love with the cast's outstanding comedic abilities. The Apartment is one of those movies everyone should see at least once.
With a library card on Kanopy, the Apartment is available for free streaming.
Michael Jai White is one of the most underappreciated actors of our time, and his blaxploitation comedy Black Dynamite is one of the funniest films of the century. White plays Black Dynamite, a former CIA agent who pursues revenge for his brothers' death and leads him all the way to the Nixon White House. The film is also filmed by White.
Black Dynamite is now available on HBO Max.
Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, and Mary Steenburgen play as a group of best friends who have been a member of a long-running book club. Each of them, although successful in their careers, is experiencing life difficulties or love difficulties. When one of them chooses Fifty Shades of Grey as the next book theyll read together, it opens the group up in a beautiful tale of personal acceptance and self-realization, no matter what stage of life you find yourself in.
On Paramount Plus, Book Club is now available for streaming.
Reggie (Audrey Hepburn) has been living off of his estate's profits, as he is suddenly murdered, and a lot of terrible people assume she knows where it is. As more people become involved in the heist, it becomes less clear who, if anyone, Reggie can trust.
In Charade, Hepburn and Grant, two well-known and likable actors, can go from pragmatic to seductive to fearful with believable ease. Grant's initial discomfort with their age gap 25 years, a still-not-uncommon chasm in Hollywood resulted in rewrites to the script to make clear that Reggie was pursuing him; it remains one of the few films in which the relationship is acknowledged and dealt with with confidence, rather than taken for granted. It's His
Charade is available for free on Prime Video and the Criterion Channel, or for free with ads on Hoopla or Kanopy, or for free on Vudu, The Roku Channel, Freevee, and Pluto TV.
Dont Go Breaking My Heart
Dont Go Breaking My Heart is one of the great modern directors of Hong Kong. She is equally adept at hard-boiled triad crime dramas and light-hearted romantic comedy genres.
Dont Go Breaking My Heart is available to stream on Netflix.
With his 2020 slasher comedy Freaky, starring Vince Vaughn and Kathryn Newton, the director of Happy Death Day is committed to a playful upheaval of genre conventions, with a concluding scene that is funny and funny enough to still be a satisfying finale.
On HBO Max, Freaky is now available for viewing.
Is Free Guy a masterful piece of cinematic art? No. Outside of its technically being an original film, its premise basically boils down to a weird bricolage of The Truman Show by way of Fortnite, PUBG, and GTA Online. Is it a solid video game comedy with solid performances by Ryan Reynolds, Jodie Comer, and Taika Waititi that closes the movie with a satisfying Easter egg fan service? Definitely not.
Free Guy is now available on Disney Plus and HBO Max.
The Gold Rush
Charlie Chaplin's wild comedy dates back to more than 100 years, and it absolutely stands up for its modern sense of humor. In The Gold Rush, Chaplin's Little Tramp is a prospector living on a shack in the Klondike, who is blown by Canadian winds, stoops to eating a leather shoe for sustenance, and finally performs his legendary fork dance.
The Gold Rush is available for free on HBO Max and Criterion Channel, or for free with ads on Freevee.
I Married a Witch
Rene Clair, who made his name in early French silent and sound cinema, spent a few years making films in the United States during World War II. Among them is the impressive black-and-white romantic comedy I Married a Witch, which stars the incomparable Veronica Lake as a witch who hopes to depose the descendant of the man who imprisoned her by making him fall in love with her.
Jennifer (Lake) and her father, Daniel (Cecil Kellaway), are cursed by Puritans in colonial Salem, forever marrying the wrong woman. 270 years later, she starts pursuing her target: Wallace Wooley, the latest descendant of the man who triggered her execution and a leading governor's daughter.
I Married a Witch is a 77-minute classic Hollywood delight with classic Edith Head costumes, charming practical effects (the two witches are represented by wisps of smoke before inhabiting bodies), and plenty of funny gags (there's a popped maize vendor during the intermission of the witches' execution). PV
I Married a Witch is available for viewing on HBO Max and Criterion Channel.
Last Action Hero
Last Action Hero is aided by having a real action hero (Arnold Schwarzenegger) in the lead, and an all-time over-the-top villain performance from Dance.
Netflix has released the Last Action Hero.
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
Wes Anderson's unusual 2004 ensemble comedy is dedicated to Jacques Cousteau and is a loving (and hilarious) tribute to the legendary French oceanographer. Steve Zissou (Bill Murray) is an oceanographer/documentarian who lost his best friend to a shark attack while working on his project. Zissou has set out to pursue his next project: to find and kill the shark, and film the entire thing.
Anjelica Huston (Zissous's estranged wife who finances his projects), Owen Wilson (a Zissou super-fan who believes he is his son) and Jeff Goldblum (playing a more successful oceanographer) make The Life Aquatic a cinematic feast of the senses. PV
Steve Zissou's Life Aquatic is available for free on Hoopla or for free with ads on Tubi.
Abe Forsythes' 2019 horror comedy Little Monsters stars Alexander England (Alien: Covenant) as Dave, a foul-mouthed and down-on-his-luck rock musician who lives with his nephews' kindergarten teacher. Unfortunately, the petting zoo is located near a US Army base that is experiencing a zombie outbreak.
Little Monsters is now available to stream on Hulu.
Love & Friendship
Kate Beckinsale plays Lady Susan, a young widow who wants suitable partners for her daughter (Morfydd Clark) and herself. Susan flirts and schemes her way throughout the film, much to the audience's delight and to the displeasure of her suitors and friends.
Chloe Sevigny (as Susans supportive best friend), Tom Bennett (as a hilariously dense wealthy fool) and the rest of the cast make excellent supporting roles, as well as Stillmans characteristic biting language and attention to detail in sets and decor. PV is one of the more recent examples of how comedic roles get overlooked during award season.
On Prime Video, Love & Friendship is available for viewing.
Criterion has deemed John Waters' early violent comedies to be art, and one can only imagine what Waters' 1970 effort might yield in a more shambles-like situation. Lady Divine (Waters' go-to collaborator) spirals out of control on a murder spree and her ex-lover (David Lochary) plots to kill her first with other members of Waters' Dreamlander acting troupe
Multiple Maniacs are now available to stream on HBO Max and Criterion Channel.
My Cousin Vinny
Two New Yorkers (including the Karate Kid himself, Ralph Macchio) are wrongly accused in Alabama, one of them calls his cousin (Joe Pesci), who has finally passed the bar exam after many, many attempts. Vinny, his wife, Mona Lisa Vito (Marisa Tomei), is on the road in the Deep South to try to win a trial against them.
My Cousin Vinny, a culture-clash comedy mixed with a legal drama, excels because of its central performances. Pesci is superb as Vinny, who is sometimes overconfident, sometimes without confidence at all, but at all times caring deeply for his loved ones. Tomei, however, is the real star of the show, who deserves an Oscar for this incredible role.
My Cousin Vinny is available to stream on HBO Max or for free with a library card on Hoopla.
The Paper Tigers
Alain Uy, Ron Yuan, and Mykel Shannon Jenkins play the eponymous Paper Tigers in Tran Quoc Baos kung fu action comedy. They then swear an oath to avenge their master's death and bring his killer to justice.
The Paper Tigers is available for free on Netflix and Hi-Yah! or for free with a library card on Hoopla and Kanopy.
The best romantic comedy on Netflix comes from a more personal, filmmaker-driven background. Plus One, from Pen15 writers Jeff Chan and Andrew Rhymer, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival before quietly settling into a streaming position and is largely overlooked. Formula excels at finding sweet humor in contemporary situations and wringing Erskine and Quaid for every drop of charisma they have to offer.
Plus One is available for free on Hulu or for free with a library card on Hoopla.
Singin in the Rain
What can we say about one of the most well-known films of all time? Ill tell you this: If Singin in the Rain werent on this list, we wouldnt be doing our jobs correctly.
The timeless 1952 classic by Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly is as enjoyable and funny as you remember. Donald OConnors Make Em Laugh is sure to leave you in stitches, but its also a bit stranger. The 13-minute dream sequence Broadway Melody is truly hypnotizing.
Singin in the Rain is now available on HBO Max.
Tampopo is a spooky ramen western set in 1985 that is one of the most beautiful food depictions ever shown on screen. A tale of community, passion, and human nature all filtered through the appreciation of good food, PV is a film.
Tampopo is available to stream on HBO Max and Criterion Channel.
To Be or Not to Be
Ernst Lubitsch's 1942 masterpiece is an uproarious and moving anti-war story about a group of actors who dupe Nazi soldiers in occupied Warsaw. But when Germany invades and a Nazi spy plots to reveal secret identities of Resistance fighters to the Nazis, the group employs every theater maneuver in the book to outmaneuver the Nazis (including a visiting Hitler himself).
To Be or Not to Be is a legendary American film with funny repeated gags, fantastic disguises, and a rock-solid emotional foundation of a group of individuals striving to protect one another in the face of evil.
HBO Max and Criterion Channel has To Be or Not to Be available for viewing.
The Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience
This musical film a spoof of Beyonces Lemonade focused on Jose Canseco and Mark McGwires famous 1980s home run streak out of nowhere in 2019 deserves more recognition.
The Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience, like previous works like Tour de Pharmacy and 7 Days in Hell (co-starring Kit Harington!), explores Canseco and McGwire's psyche through poetry, abstract imagery, and profane lyrics. Surprisingly, Andy Samberg and Akiva Schaffer do not skimp on the depth of the Bash Brothers. With lyrics like Stab that needle in my ass until I am rich / Make me a god with the chemical sciences, McGwire eventually finds
Netflix has released the Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience.
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story is a nice compromise between musical biopics, especially the often blatant attempt to capture a whole life in one film. A hilarious ensemble performance by John C. Reilly as Rockstar Dewey Cox, a hilarious supporting cast by Tim Meadows as Dewey's drummer, and a relentless stream of funny gags as funny as they are funny (highlighted by an extended sequence where Paul Rudd, Jack Black, Justin Long, and Jason Schwartzman play
Dewey Cox's Walk Hard Story is now available on Paramount Plus.
Wheels on Meals
Wheels on Meals is one of the finest of an outrageously good group of films set and shot in Barcelona. When Thomas (Chan) and David (Yuen) meet a somewhat incompetent private investigator (Sammo Hung) who is also looking for the woman, the group band together to save her.
Jackie Chan's prolific filmography is shown in Wheels on Meals, where he faces off against legendary kickboxer Benny Urquidez (the pair would later fight again in Dragons Forever), who at the time was one of the most prominent and successful fighters in the world. There are few things in this world that are better.
If you like this, you should also check out Project A, which came out a year earlier and features one of Chans' most spectacular and terrifying stunts.
With Plex advertisements, Wheels on Meals is available for free streaming.
Polygon's best stuff is rounded up every week.
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