The Funniest American Comedies


   

The laughDB database is dedicated to the funniest comedy movies, stand-up comedy and TV series.

This section is for comedies from the USA. By default they are presented starting with the ones ranking highest on the laugh-o-meter, but you can also sort them by year, title or IMDB rating.


Funniest American Comedies sorted by Laugh-o-meter (descending) / page 19 of 21


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Melvin Goes to Dinner posterMelvin Goes to Dinner
      2003 | USA | Laughs: 0.5 (Don't Bother) | imdb: 7.1
      wikipedia | dmoz | who was involved?

I'm not sure how this ever came to be classified as a comedy. Maybe it's so edgy you have to live in the New York City subway to understand it. The movie (what I saw of it) seems to wander around a group of young adults having dinner at a restaurant. Seeing that the first twenty minutes didn't raise my interest on any level, I gave up. Save yourself time, go have dinner with your own friends. (Last viewed: December 2013)

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The Other Woman posterThe Other Woman
      2014 | USA | Laughs: 0.5 | imdb: 6.0
      wikipedia | who was involved?

A wife and two mistresses team up to punish their unfaithful man. I decided to watch this movie because of an imdb review from someone stating that they couldn't stop laughing. It saddens me, then, to have to report that I couldn't start laughing. The theme is certainly perfect for comedy, and I would love to watch it properly executed. Perhaps that film already exists in the vast repository of world comedies—I hope to hear about it someday from someone writing from a place such as France, Italy or Egypt. (Last viewed: December 2017)

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Smorgasbord Cracking Up posterSmorgasbord (a.k.a Cracking Up)
      1983 | USA | Laughs: 0.5 (Just Awful) | imdb: 5.9
      wikipedia | who was involved?

For the longest time, I thought that the frequent American sneering at the French for finding Jerry Lewis funny was a symptom of ignorance on the part of the accusers (did the French really find Jerry Lewis funny?) and of their lack of sense of humor, in keeping with the general lack of appreciation for British humor on the western side of the Atlantic. You see, I hadn't yet watched a Jerry Lewis movie, and I assumed that he had to be terribly funny in a way that most Americans just didn't get.

Some say that this film is Jerry's funniest, but it was one of the least funny comedies I'd ever watched, confirming part of the popular wisdom that I'd so long rejected. I still don't know whether the French find Jerry funny; true or not, the idea that they do is certainly amusing.

I'm sure the man was a genius of a kind and I'm glad he found his public. (Last viewed: December 2018)

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Steve Martin: A Wild and Crazy Guy posterSteve Martin: A Wild and Crazy Guy
      1978 | USA | Laughs: 0.5 (Don't Bother) | imdb: 7.7
      wikipedia | who was involved?

This short film is a series of skits which have the funny feature that they all fail to make me laugh. Maybe it's the forty years that have elapsed, but my suspicion is that Steve Martin and I are not on the same wavelength. Next I'll go try some his stand-up. (Last viewed: August 2018)

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What To Expect When You're Expecting posterWhat To Expect When You're Expecting
      2012 | USA | Laughs: 0.5 (Just Awful) | imdb: 5.7
      wikipedia | who was involved?

Several couples plan to have a baby, expect a baby, have a baby. Although there were a few chuckles, this was by far the worst comedy I've watched all year. At an early stage they turned the sappy tap on and never turned it off—it kept dripping, dripping, dripping. The last twenty minutes or so felt like an unending baby-fest. I don't mind indulging my partner in a chick flick sometimes, but gentlemen, do not concede on this one or the hair under your arms will fall out. (Last viewed: November 2015)

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Dizzy Doctors DVDThe Three Stooges: Dizzy Doctors
      1937 | USA | Laughs: 0.5 (Don't Bother) | imdb: 7.9
      wikipedia | who was involved?

Some comedy ages poorly as culture evolves. This comedy short, one of the highest ranking of the three stooges, features no humor other than people getting poked in the eye or bumped on the head. It's resolutely unfunny but serves a purpose: after seeing this one, you know you never need to watch another Three Stooges again. (Last viewed: March 2013)

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Doug Stanhope: No Place Like Home posterDoug Stanhope: No Place Like Home
      2016 | USA | Laughs: 0.2 (Don't Bother) | imdb: 6.9
      who was involved?

In this set Doug had a few good points. I do appreciate good points, but there's a whole world of non-fiction writing that can supply enough of those. The main reason I watch stand-up is to laugh, and the set didn't make me laugh—not once—which saddened me as I thought Doug had done a surprisingly good job of staying in funny shape on the last tape that I'd watched, Beer Putsch Hall. I hope he bounces back as I would hate to lose him as the lone star that he is on the stand-up skyscape. (Last viewed: June 2017)

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A Beginner's Guide to Endings posterA Beginner's Guide to Endings
      2010 | USA | Laughs: 0.2 (Don't Bother) | imdb: 6.4
      wikipedia | who was involved?

Although this movie is tagged as a comedy, it is one in the long series that have been trying (and failing) to emulate the style of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. It might have a lot of edge, but it doesn't cut. Skip. (Last viewed: March 2015)

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Destination Wedding posterDestination Wedding
      2018 | USA | Laughs: 0.2 (Don't Bother) | imdb: 6.0
      wikipedia | who was involved?

Two strangers who are equally cynical and unpleasant find themselves spending a lot of time together at a wedding, to the point of breaking through the point of repulsion. Not unpleasant but not very funny either, just a bit pointless, like the lives of the characters the movie is meant to depict. (Last viewed: December 2018)

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Hot Tub Time Machine DVDHot Tub Time Machine
      2010 | USA | Laughs: 0.1 (Just Awful) | imdb: 6.4
      wikipedia | who was involved?

With a fun title and a few good actors among the cast, I expected this movie to be entertaining. The first joke I understood was when someone got sprayed by excrement. The second was when someone got sprayed by urine. The third was when someone got sprayed by vomit. That was about twenty minutes into the movie. If you think that's terrible, I do too—but the bits in between were even worse, mostly owing to one loud obnoxious character. I carried on to somewhere around the thirty-minute mark then gave up. Not only is the writing appalling, they weren't even able to get the 1980s soundtrack right—unless they were going for mostly bad 80s music. This is one for the dumpster. (Last viewed: November 2012)

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Brad's Status posterBrad's Status
      2017 | USA | Laughs: 0.1 (Light-Hearted) | imdb: 6.5
      wikipedia | who was involved?

This movie was probably classified as a comedy because Ben Stiller is in it, but in fact it should properly be tagged as a light-hearted drama.

As a result, don't expect laughs here. Nevertheless, the movie is solid and contemplates a time in a person's life (the years around fifty) that rarely seems to be the object of a film's attention.

As he takes his son around Boston to college interviews, the main character is led to examine his life, and sees his place in life in a poor light compared with the achievements of his former peers. Stiller does a great job, and the actor who plays the role of the son does even better—perhaps chiefly because his face is less well-known. (Last viewed: April 2018)

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Arizona Dream posterArizona Dream
      1993 | USA | Laughs: 0.1 (Don't Bother) | imdb: 7.4
      wikipedia | who was involved?

A young man moves into a country house with two unstable women: that's about as far as I'd dare describe the plot of this plotless film.

This movie may deserve its "Comedy" classification in the sense that it's not serious, but don't expect it to make you laugh. Although I've watched Kusturica's work since seeing Time of the Gypsies in the theater in 1988, some of his pieces are too chaotic for me, and this is one of them. Honorable mention for Jerry Lewis, by far the best component of the movie. (Last viewed: June 2018)

More About Arizona Dream:
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Dazed and Confused posterDazed and Confused
      1993 | USA | Laughs: 0.1 (Light-Hearted) | imdb: 7.7
      wikipedia | who was involved?

After the last day of high school, students cruise around town over the course of a long afternoon and its ensuing night.

I believe that this movie owes much of its popularity to its presence on Quentin Tarantino's list of top-ten films—no doubt a list well worth studying for little-known gems. There is no doubt that it captures something and will resonate with many who attended high-school in the United States in the 1970s, but as a lover of funny movies I found little of interest. The movie lost me at one of its many stops along the endless evening it depicts, and I struggled to keep my eyes open till the end. (Last viewed: June 2018)

More About Dazed and Confused:
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No Strings Attached DVDNo Strings Attached
      2011 | USA | Laughs: 0.1 (Broken Comedies) | imdb: 6.2
      wikipedia | who was involved?

After enjoying Ashton Kutcher in several comedies, I was disappointed by this film. My expectations were not high as "romantic comedies" rarely have strong writing, especially in the laughter department. Even so, I'd say that most tragedies have more humor than this movie. I chuckled once, a few minutes from the end, when Kutcher lightens up and tells Portman that she eats her breakfast like a baby dinosaur. It confounds me how this movie can rate higher than Dude, Where's My Car or My Boss's Daughter. These were the films that introduced me to Ashton, and where his innocent smile had a way of putting me in a good (and forgiving) mood. For most of this movie, Ashton is barely recognizable—he barely smiles, so that his face, normally so expressive, turns into a neutral mask. Not good for comedy unless you have an excellent deadpan script. Ashton was 22 in Dude and 33 in this film, and I realize that physiognomies change as we age… But I hope you don't lost your smile, Mr Kutcher! Bottom line: don't waste your time with this one. (Last viewed: September 2012)

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Forrest Gump posterForrest Gump
      1994 | USA | Laughs: 0.0 (Light-Hearted) | imdb: 8.8
      wikipedia | dmoz | who was involved?

If the focus of this site were light-hearted movies rather than laugh-out-loud comedy, this film would rank pretty high, although it does get heavy at times, especially towards the end. On the laughter dimension, I came out empty-handed on this second viewing after a twenty-odd year gap, although I did chuckle once.

The movie shows us the world through the eyes of a man with a low IQ (I'll refrain from adding "but high sensitivity"). At first I got the impression that the film was going to be about the wisdom of the fool—the eternal theme of the simple man having a deeper understanding of life than his brethren. Fortunately, there was more to it than that, otherwise the nearly-three-hours of reels would have been unbaringly preachy.

Part of the comedy lies in the fact that unwillingly, our character gets to play a part in frontline events and achieves some outstanding deeds—without seeming to care one bit about the ensuing glory. By and large, he does things because he feels like doing them.

Although the movie is sappy at times, it is a real treat in other moments. Overall, I would place it on the shelf of the guilty pleasures of American cinema. Let the record state that I am glad that shelf exists. (Last viewed: May 1994 April 2018)

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