With a vast library at your disposal, HBO Max features enough movies to provide a complete history of comedy cinema. Here are 10 of the best comedy movies you can stream on HBO Max.
Beavis and Butt-Head make America
Mike Judge’s animated creations made the jump from MTV to the big screen in Beavis and Butt-Head Do America. Judge takes the two stupid, horny teens on an epic journey across the country, driven by their base desires (to get a new TV and to “score” with “girls”). As usual, Beavis and Butt-Head’s idiotic remarks are surprisingly scathing and funny, even if they don’t realize it themselves. The film takes a short, simple cartoon and expands it into a clever satire on American culture.
Best in Show
Director Christopher Guest put together a formidable repertory company for his many comedy spoofs, and Best in Show is the strongest work to come out. The cast includes Eugene Levy, Fred Willard, Catherine O’Hara, Jane Lynch, Michael McKean, Jennifer Coolidge, and many other talented improvisers. Together, they take on the absurdity of a high-profile dog show, where various self-absorbed characters obsess over their pampered dogs and flaunt their personal eccentricities.
beverly hills police
Eddie Murphy went from star to superstar with the 1984 action comedy Beverly Hills Cop, one of the defining films of a subgenre that flourished in the 1980s. Murphy is as charismatic and funny as the Detroit police detective who break the rules, Axel Foley, it really doesn’t matter what the plot is.
Judge Reinhold is a perfect comedic partner for Murphy as a serious Beverly Hills detective who looks up to Foley. Director Martin Brest balances Murphy’s electric screen presence with some well-crafted action sequences.
Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure
Fair Guys Bill S. Preston, Esq. (Alex Winter) and Ted “Theodore” Logan (Keanu Reeves) travel through time to complete their high school history report in this beloved buddy comedy. Bill & Ted’s excellent adventure is an exuberant celebration of friendship and music, with hilarious and irreverent interpretations of historical figures such as Napoleon, Abraham Lincoln and Socrates. Winter and Reeves turn the central duo into an iconic couple, who then return for two uneven but welcome sequels.
Filmmaker Kevin Smith was working as a clerk when he made the micro-budget independent comedy Clerks in 1994. The black-and-white film chronicles a day in the life of best friends Dante (Brian O’Halloran) and Randal (Jeff Anderson), who work in adjacent stores in a New Jersey mall. It’s full of Smith’s now-familiar pop culture, with articulate characters who overthink every aspect of their lives. Smith draws much humor from the mundane monotony of suburban retail employees.
Will Ferrell is known for his work in raunchy, over-the-top comedies, but his most famous role to date may be in this wholesome Christmas movie. Elf stars Ferrell as Buddy, a human orphan who grew up among Santa’s elves in the North Pole. Now an adult (but still equipped with the wide-eyed wonder of a child), Buddy arrives in New York City to search for his biological father (James Caan). While he’s there, he wreaks havoc, falls in love and, of course, saves Christmas.
Pee Wee’s Big Adventure
The feature film debut of director Tim Burton and Paul Reubens’ bow-tie-clad title character, Pee-wee’s Big Adventure is a wacky and silly road trip comedy adventure. Pee-wee Herman (Reubens) is a weird kid who goes on a cross-country odyssey to get his stolen bike back, meeting all sorts of weird characters along the way. He somehow manages to endear himself to all of them (as well as the audience) with his strange charm and enthusiasm.
the history of philadelphia
You have to be on your toes to keep up with the fast-paced, witty dialogue of classic wacko comedy The Philadelphia Story. In typical farce, misunderstandings abound during a weekend when socialite Tracy Lord (Katharine Hepburn) is getting married. James Stewart and Cary Grant play her possible love interests, one as her ex-husband and the other as a nosy journalist. It’s a smart, sophisticated romantic comedy with satisfying Hollywood endings for everyone involved.
Before it became a slightly over-the-top franchise, Pitch Perfect was a sweet, unassuming comedy about the world of college a cappella groups. Anna Kendrick stars as an aspiring music producer who reluctantly joins her college a cappella group of women, eventually leading them to national championships.
There’s plenty of creative singing and choreography to enjoy along the way, plus a bit of romance. Kendrick is joined by a cast of talented women, including Anna Camp, Rebel Wilson, Brittany Snow and Elizabeth Banks.
Of the comedy stars of the silent era, Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton often outshine Harold Lloyd. But if you look at Lloyd’s 1923 masterpiece, Safety Last! , you’ll see why he deserves to be mentioned alongside those comedy legends.
Lloyd is as poignant a character actor as Chaplin, playing a downtrodden department store clerk. And he’s just as talented a physical comedian as Keaton, especially in a still dazzling stunt sequence of Lloyd dangling from the hands of a giant clock on the side of a building.