On top of their originals, Netflix has a nice collection of comedy films for streamers to enjoy on a low-key Saturday night. They may not be critical darlings on sites such as Rotten Tomatoes, but some of Netflix’s studio-produced comedies are revered on IMDb.
From Adam Sandler ensemble pieces to classic 1990s romantic comedies, the streamer’s variety is impressive, practically ensuring there’s something for everyone. There’s even one of the better films from Broken Lizard, the hilarious team behind Super Troopers and the underrated Super Troopers 2.
10 Grown Ups (2010) – 5.9
Featuring just about every Adam Sandler stalwart player, Grown Ups is a treat for fans of the actors and his friends.
The movie is essentially an excuse to watch some likable buddies pal around for 90 minutes, but the cast is enough to sustain the movie. The plot follows a group of old high school friends who reunite at the funeral of their former basketball coach. Soon, they learn that old bonds don’t die easy, and can be easily revigorated.
9 Fun With Dick And Jane (2005) – 6.1
Fun with Dick and Jane was a mid-aughts hit for Jim Carrey, and it’s one of his last straightforward comedy movies (sans kid-skewing fair like Mr. Poppers Penguins and his two Sonic the Hedgehog films).
The film stars Carrey and Téa Leoni as a married couple, two of the final members of the dwindling middle class. When their nest egg is stolen by Dick’s conceited, lying, tycoon of a boss, they get a taste of what the truly struggling are going through.
8 Beerfest (2006) – 6.2
Broken Lizard started with what was effectively a student film: Puddle Cruiser. Then, in 2001, they broke through big with Super Troopers, which would, unfortunately, be a level of success they wouldn’t reach again. The closest they came was Beerfest (especially after the underrated Club Dread failed to take off), which didn’t set the box office on fire but made a profit and has since become a cult item.
Beerfest can best be summarized by one classic, heavily German-accented line: “I remember my first beer.” It’s a movie about competition, beer, and not remembering the competition you just took a part in.
7 My Best Friend’s Wedding (1997) – 6.3
Julia Roberts may be one of the most successful actors of the 2000s, but her ’90s were even better. Featuring Julia Roberts, Dermot Mulroney, Cameron Diaz, and Rupert Everett in perfectly-cast roles, P.J. Hogan’s My Best Friend’s Wedding is one of the best romantic comedies from the 1990s.
Roberts portrays Julianne Potter, a woman who had a deal with a man, Michael O’Neal (Mulroney), to marry if they were both single at 28. But then O’Neal gets engaged to 20-year-old Kimberly, and Potter is deadset on blowing apart the nuptials.
6 Just Go With It (2011) – 6.4
With the exception of Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Aniston is hands down Adam Sandler’s best female scene partner.
Sandler portrays Danny Maccabee, a plastic surgeon whose flirting technique is faking marriages so he can score down the line. However, when he meets Palmer (Brooklyn Decker), Maccabee has to up his game, so he enlists Katherine (Aniston) to actually play his soon-to-be-ex-wife. Naturally, as with all Sandler films, things don’t go to plan but end up okay.
5 Due Date (2010) – 6.5
Due Date is very far from being Todd Phillips’ best film, but it has its IMDb fans. Aspects of the project are very memorable. Namely, Zach Galifianakis’ performance as the almost-too-pathetic Ethan Tremblay is different enough from his performances as Alan in Phillips’ The Hangover trilogy.
The film is essentially a remake of Trains, Planes and Automobiles with a dark slant, with Robert Downey, Jr. in Steve Martin’s straight-man role to John Candy’s/Galifianakis’ eccentric character.
4 Road Trip (2000) – 6.5
Todd Phillips’ classic road trip comedy, suitably titled Road Trip, is a product of its time, yet still manages to be quite fun today.
Road Trip‘s appeal can be summarized by the fact that it’s filled with major late ’90s-early ’00s comedy/pop-culture icons like Seann William Scott (American Pie), Tom Green (Freddy Got Fingered, an interesting film in its own right if only because it was greenlit), Amy Smart (Crank), and Breckin Meyer (Rat Race). The plot follows Meyer’s character as he journeys with friends to get back a sex tape with a fling he’d accidentally sent his girlfriend.
3 The Other Guys (2010) – 6.6
The first, and best, of three films pairing Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell, The Other Guys is a well-plotted and occasionally outright surprising adventure.
Ferrell and Wahlberg’s chemistry was there for Daddy’s Home and its sequel, but there’s little doubt Adam McKay’s cop comedy is the better film. The plot follows Ferrell’s Allen Gamble and Wahlberg’s Terry Hoitz, two NYPD detectives with diametric opposite views on how the job should be done. Gamble prefers protocol, Hoitz prefers to push his fist through a window, but they’ll need to merge the two mentalities to take down swindler Sir David Ershon (a perfectly-cast Steve Coogan).
2 Stripes (1981) – 6.8
One of the late Ivan Reitman’s best films, Stripes, is also one of the best comedies on Netflix. It’s Bill Murray at the height of his cinematic comedic power, a leading role before he was sharing the screen with Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, and Ernie Hudson.
The plot follows Murray’s John Winger, a destitute cab driver whose girlfriend breaks up with him after a long time coming. Winger decides to enlist in the U.S. Army, but his attitude is far from the type that serves a unit well on the battlefield.
1 St. Vincent (2014) – 7.2
St. Vincent is a 2014 comedy-drama starring Bill Murray, comfortably in his later-career element. The actor portrays the titular character, a man who spends most of his time drunk on a lawn chair in his poorly-mowed backyard. When Maggie (Melissa McCarthy) and her son, Oliver (Jaeden Martell, It), move in next door, Vincent finds his lazy life suddenly more complex.
McCarthy is as much of a standout as Murray, giving a straightforward and heartstring-tugging performance that still exhibits shreds of fun. Martell is also outstanding as is Naomi Watts as Daka Parimova.
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