Audiences always need a good laugh and 2021 was a year that delivered some stellar comedies. Some of the most popular movies of the year leaned into their great sense of humor, adding a much-needed spark of joy into the moviegoing experience.
There were enough hilarious options to please fans of all kinds, from family-friendly adventures to the R-rated mayhem. Some were smaller movies that delivered grounded laughs while others were huge blockbusters that found humor in their large stories. With so many options, audiences didn’t have any trouble finding laughs at the movies in 2021.
10 Free Guy (7.2)
Ryan Reynolds has become one of the most popular comedic actors in recent years and Free Guy was another winning movie from him. Reynolds stars as Guy, a background character in an intense video game who begins to take control of his life for the first time and changes the world around him.
Reynolds is joined by the likes of Jodie Comer, Lil Rel Howery, and Taika Waititi, all of whom give hilarious performances. There are plenty of references and cameos that will please fans as well as a fast-paced sense of humor to accompany the clever premise.
9 The Suicide Squad (7.3)
After bringing one group of oddballs to the big screen in the MCU, James Gunn delivered the best DCEU movie of 2021 with The Suicide Squad. Gunn combines the superhero genre with a war adventure movie and wraps it all in his twisted humor for a wild ride.
It is a lot of fun seeing Gunn play around with an R-rating, making for some hilarious dark humor throughout the movie. The movie also introduces some of the funniest DCEU characters, like Peacemaker and King Shark.
8 Cruella (7.4)
The latest live-action retelling of a Disney animated classic focused on one of the most infamous villains in movie history. Cruella explored a different side of Cruella de Vil with Emma Stone giving a winning performance in the lead role.
Stone brings her usual humor, charm, and considerable acting talent to the role. The movie itself was also a surprisingly fun ride that turns Cruella’s origins into a stylish heist movie. Along with a lot of funny supporting characters, Cruella was one of 2021’s biggest surprises.
7 The French Dispatch (7.4)
While not everyone is a fan of Wes Anderson movies, his distinct sense of humor is hilarious for many devoted fans. Anderson’s latest voyage is to France in The French Dispatch which tells various stories surrounding the titular magazine.
The movie is packed with funny people like Bill Murray and Owen Wilson as well as some actors giving unexpectedly funny performances like Benicio Del Toro and Jeffrey Wright. The result is a magical and pleasant ride with Anderson’s signature style.
6 Luca (7.5)
Though Luca didn’t catch on in the same way as some other Pixar movies, it is still a wonderful and entertaining family-friendly adventure. It follows a pair of young sea monsters who decide to go above the surface and explore the world of humans.
The movie has the same vibrant energy and fun tone that makes all Pixar movies such wonderful adventures. It also follows the similar formula of combining that humor with a lot of heart which makes it all the more special.
5 Ghostbusters: Afterlife (7.6)
The original Ghostbusters is one of the most beloved comedies of all time and Ghostbusters: Afterlife attempts to recapture some of that magic. The direct sequel follows the family of Egon Spengler as they inherit his house and find themselves on a new ghost-busting adventure.
The new cast of characters make for a fun reintroduction into this world and there are a number of crowd-pleasing cameos as well. While it might not provide as many iconic comedic moments as the original, it does add a good bit of charm with the supernatural laughs.
4 Sing 2 (7.6)
The mix of family-friendly humor and popular songs proved to be a winning combination for Sing so it is not surprising that the sequel stuck to that formula. Sing 2 follows the lovable group of animals hoping to bring a reclusive rock star out of retirement to participate in their new talent show.
With an all-star cast including Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon, and Scarlet Johansson as well as a number of beloved songs from iconic artists, Sing 2 appeals to the younger and older audiences.
3 The Mitchells Vs The Machines (7.7)
Yet another animated adventure that had audiences laughing this year was The Mitchells vs. the Machines. The DreamWorks project follows a family with their fair share of tension who embark on a cross-country road trip together, only for a rogue A.I. system to take over the world.
The movie is perhaps the most fast-paced comedy of the year with hilarious jokes flying at the audience every minute. It is a wild and touching ride with many moments that will have the viewers laughing out loud.
2 The Worst Person In The World (8.1)
While there are usually some international movies that are able to grab the audience’s attention every year, it is rare for them to be comedies. However, the humor of the Norwegian movie, The Worst Person in the World didn’t get lost in translation.
The inventive comedy follows a young woman dealing with her complicated love life. The darkly subversive take on the rom-com genre really struck a chord with many viewers as well as becoming one of the best-reviewed movies of the year.
1 Licorice Pizza (8.2)
It is not surprising to see a Paul Thomas Anderson movie getting a strong reception from audiences. But just as his intense dramas like There Will Be Blood wowed fans, his lighter side in Licorice Pizza is just as effective.
The coming-of-age comedy set in 1973 explores a story of first love. Anderson’s sharp writing and some memorable characters helped Licorice Pizza become one of the most entertaining movies of the year.
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