A List of the 20 Funniest Movies – Help!

I have a terrific friend who is coming home from the hospital tomorrow to recuperate from heart surgery. Her doctors say that this kind of surgery triggers feelings of sadness and depression. So I want to put together a list of the 20 funniest movies to send her family. I am trying to come up with a truly inspiring list. However, I need your collective genius.

If you got two minutes, would you post the funniest movies you have ever seen?

Here is my first brainstorm:

The Full Monty
Waking Ned Devine
Auntie Mame
Love Actually
Trading Places
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
Calender Girls
Saving Grace
How to Marry a Millionare
Bringing Up Baby
The Philadelphia Story
The Seven Year Itch
My Favorite Wife


  1. 1. Sherman’s March
    2. Some Like it Hot
    3. Get Shorty
    4. Auntie Mame
    5. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
    6. The Seven Year Itch
    7. The Commitments
    8. Bringing Up Baby
    9. What About Bob?
    10. The Philadelphia Story
    11. L.A. Story
    12. The Apartment
    13. Coming to America
    14. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
    15. A Fish Called Wanda
    16. It Happened One Night
    17. Alice
    18. Dr. Strangelove
    19. True Lies
    20. Harold and Maude

  2. Apparently you had not yet completed your request when I added my first list. Now that you have described the parameters, I would add any of the following: Some Like It Hot, A Fish Called Wanda, L.A. Story, Coming to America, Sherman’s March (Ross MacElwee), What About Bob?, Groundhog Day, The Commitments, True Lies, Get Shorty, Ruthless People, The Addams Family, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, The Freshman, Soapdish, The Princess Bride, Betsey’s Wedding, When Harry Met Sally, When Harry Met Sally, Postcards from the Edge, and I’ll stop with “It Happened One Night and Tootsie.”

  3. Maybe a little on the cynical side, but “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” always makes me laugh out loud, from unladen swallows to anarcho-syndicalist collectives.

    Other than that, having given up television and movies long ago for books and documentaries, I can’t be of much help. But I hope your terrific friend does well. My intentions and thoughts will be for her to recover from heart surgery and return to good health.

  4. Hi Catherine –

    – Princess Bride
    – Monty Python’s Holy Grail
    – Absolutely Fabulous (Brit TV show you can get on DVD) – if she likes Brit humo(u)r…..

  5. Just a few, in no particular order.

    Young Frankenstein
    Mystery Science Theater 3000 – The Beginning of the End
    Brain Donors
    Duck Soup
    The Big Lebowski
    Captain Ron
    Something Funny Happened On The Way To The Forum
    The Producers (with Zero Mostel)
    Arsenic And Old Lace
    The Pink Panther Strikes Again
    Over The Hedge
    Easy Money
    Back To School
    A Fish Called Wanda
    Grumpy Old Men
    Earth Girls Are Easy
    Ruthless People
    Outrages Fortune
    Money Pit
    Toy Story
    Airplane 1 or 2
    Naked Gun 1,2, or 3

  6. Airplane, Cable Guy, Uncle Buck, Duck Soup, A Day at the Races (or any Marx Bros movie), Thumb Wars (or any of the “Thumb” movies). And here is a list made by friends for a friend suffering from lung cancer:
    Mrs. Doubtfire
    The Gods Must Be Crazy
    A Fish Called Wanda
    Blazing Saddles
    Laurel & Hardy
    My Step-Mother is an Alien
    Woody Allen’s Love and Death
    Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex
    Who Framed Rodger Rabbit?
    The Mask
    Three Amigos
    There’s Something About Mary
    Monty Python and the Search for the Holy Grail
    The Scalphunters (dir. Sydney Pollock w/BurtLancaster/TellySavalas/ShelleyWinters)
    Cats and Dogs (a wonderful family comedy)
    Army of Darkness (a spoof of sci-fi movies)
    Honey, I Shrunk the Kids
    Home Alone
    Wayne’s World
    Bushman 2
    Pee Wee’s Big Adventure
    Attack of the 60 Foot Centerfold

  7. Dear Catherine,

    Humor is such an individual thing, so my recommendations might not be humorous to your friend, but I’ll give it a go regadless. The Meaning of LIfe, by Monty Python; 40 Days, a movie about a young man who wants to go without sex for 40 days; Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, with Kenau Reeves; Groundhog Day, with Bill Murry; and that’s it. Good luck! Greg

  8. Depends on what kinds of humor strikes her as being really funny, but here are some of my personal all-time favorites:

    Dumb and Dumber
    Office Space
    The Three Amigos
    Dr. Strangelove
    The Odd Couple (original)
    The Jerk
    Grosse Point Blanke
    A Fish Called Wanda
    Silver Streak
    The Man With Two Brains
    Blazing Saddles
    Robin Hood: Men in Tights
    It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
    The Revenge of the Pink Panther
    The Frisco Kid
    Some Like It Hot
    All of Me
    Young Frankenstein

  9. Since I have always loved films, beginning with a childhood experience watching Its a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (listed below) with my Mom and friends at a large screen Cinescope theatre, tears streaming down my Mom’s face from laughing so hard, here is my selection (not necessarily in this order)of some of my favorites (caveat: humor is subjective, and the listed are the “safest” of my selection):

    Topper (#1, not Topper Returns)
    Thin Man series
    The Trouble with Angels
    Its a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
    The Adventures of Don Juan
    Local Hero
    Being There
    Down with Love
    The Real McCoys (60’s television show – its corny and silly)
    City Slickers #1
    Waiting for Guffman
    Best in the Show
    A Mighty Wind
    Practical Magic
    Living out loud
    Bringing down the house

  10. What we consider funny seems to change as we get older.
    But here are a few movies that should get some laughs.

    The Marx Brothers Movies.
    They had visual slapstick and clever lines,
    some written by S.J. Perelman.

    Monty Python’s The Life of Brian.
    Some might consider this film a little bit sacreligious,
    but I am religious and didn’t think so; I thought
    it was funny.

    Some of the Pink Panther movies starring
    Peter Sellers and written by Blake Edwards.
    When I was young, they were some of my favorites.
    Peter Sellers was one of the finest film actors
    of all time, I think, and he never got recognition
    for it. In the Pink Panther movies he created
    a perfectly butchered French accent and persona.
    And in Dr. Strangelove, he played three distinct
    characters with different voice inflections and
    different body language: the president of the U.S.,
    a British military man, and a former Nazi scientist.
    I apologize for this ode to Peter Sellers, but he
    deserves it.

    I agree that Trading Places is a good one.

  11. Dear Catherine,

    I’m not sure why my earlier comment was not posted, but here goes again. Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life; Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, with Keneau Reeves; 40 Days, about a young man who tries to go 40 days without having sex; Mrs. Doubtfire, with Robin Williams; and finally, Groundhog Day, with Bill Murray. Have fun and hope she/he enjoys them all.



  12. Little Miss Sunshine is my favorite funny movie, and my entire family loves Arthur (though maybe not so funny if your friend has an alcoholic in the family). Miranda July’s You, Me and Everyone We Know is awfully quirky at times, and a bit uncomfortable at others, but wonderfully endearing and quite funny.

  13. Rattatouie
    Bruce almighty
    National lampoons Christmas Vacation
    Home Alone
    King Pin
    Dumb and Dumber
    The great outdoors
    Caddy Shack
    Harlem nights
    Comming to America

  14. For my money, Intolerable Cruelty starring Catherine Zeta-Jones and George Clooney is the new, improved, updated and heartful replacement for How to Marry a Millionaire.

    for an oddball favorite she may not have seen, I love Zero Effect starring Bill Pullman, Ben Stiller and more.


  15. People have such different senses of humor. Some of my friends love Monty Python, Pink Panther, and early Woody Allen films.
    I’m with you. I found The Full Monty hysterically funny. Other films that can still get me to laugh:

    Sister Act
    Miss Congeniality
    Liar, Liar
    The Dream Team

  16. Regarding movies, I’d suggest three performers in silent films:
    * Marx Brothers (I’m partial to Duck Soup)
    * Buster Keaton (anything)
    * Harold Lloyd (anything)
    They’re great, hilarous, and bear re-watching.

    Among the more recent movies,
    * A Fish Called Wanda

  17. “Little Miss Sunshine” is definitely a good laugh. “Being John Malkovich” is hilarious but it’s quite a dark comedy and not everyone’s cup of tea. Anything Monty Python, especially “Holy Grail” (Run away!)… I also love Lewis Black’s standup, but again his humor is quite dark and he also uses a great deal of profanity.

  18. Oops I didn’t mean to post that yet. Anyway, continuing on…

    -The Jerk
    -Stir Crazy
    -The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain — charming with gorgeous scenery, highly recommend

  19. Dear Ms. Fitts:

    I would add “Christmas in Connecticut”, “Big Business” and “9 to 5” to the list, and for an uplifting film that won’t make a person laugh, but cry joyful tears, I would add “Big Eden”. It’s a movie I watch when I need a little pick-me-up, and especially when I need to remember to have faith in other people.

  20. Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House (Cary Grant and Myrna Loy)
    This is Spinal Tap (Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Harry Shearer)
    Bananas (Woody Allen)
    My Cousin Vinny (Joe Pesci)
    Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (Jim Carrey)
    The Pink Panther (Peter Sellers)
    The Wrong Arm of the Law (Peter Sellers)
    The Lavender Hill Mob (Alec Guinness)
    Monty Python and the Holy Grail
    Duck Soup (The Marx Bros.)
    Animal House (John Belushi)
    Young Frankenstein (Gene Wilder, Peter Boyle, Marty Feldman)
    Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (Mike Myers)
    Shakes the Clown (Bob Goldwaithe)
    A Fish Named Wanda (Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Palin, John Cleese, Kevin Kline)
    Annie Hall (Woody Allen, Diane Keaton)
    The bank Dick (WC Fields, Mae West)
    Waiting for Guffman (Christopher Guest, Paker Posey, Fred Willard, Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara)
    My Favorite Year (Peter O’Toole)
    National Lampoon’s Vacation (Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, Randy Quaid)
    Canadian Bacon (John Candy)
    Moulin Rouge (not a comedy but a great film)

  21. “Auntie Mame” is my favorite feel good movie; I watch it every time I need a little soul boost — “Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death”

    I second most of the recommendations I see here, but would add:
    “His Girl Friday” (Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell)
    “The Philadelphia Story” (Cary Grant, Katherine Hepburn, James Stewart)
    “What’s Up Doc?” (Barbra Streisand, Ryan O’Neal, Madeline Kahn)
    “The Grand Budapest Hotel” (Ralph Fiennes + lots of others)
    “Moonrise Kingdom” (another Wes Andersen movie)
    “Crazy Rich Asians”
    “What We Do in Shadows”
    “The Odd Couple”
    “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels”

  22. It might be on the list but “Tin Men” with Danny DeVito and Richard Dreyfuss is hilarious. Danny DeVito is always good. It’s about two aluminum siding salesmen.

  23. I have always liked Carol Burnett and Tim Conway (as Dorf) from TV shows….I think they sell DVD’s from those old shows. All Danny DeVito movies are great fun.
    Best of healing for your friend.

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