Category Archives: Top 25 Comedies

ATB’s Top 25 Comedies: Overview


Our list of the top 25 comedies of all-time ended with yesterday’s reveal of Anchorman in the top spot. It was a long, emotional journey through some surprising picks and some no-brainers, but we’ve finally arrived.

Once the month is over, we generally take a step back and see how things turned out. Even though putting these together is a lot of work, one of my favorite parts is compiling everyone’s picks, assigning the appropriate point values and getting the group’s results for the first time.

The entire top 25 is listed below with links for your viewing pleasure. I’ll just talk about a couple things that stood out to me:

  • I’m still a little surprised that neither 40-Year-Old Virgin nor Office Space made the cut. Those were two that I expected to be in the low teens or upper 20s, but they finished 26th and 27th instead. Then again, if I’d put Office Space higher than 24th on my own list that might have made the difference. My bad, I guess.
  • I’m glad a few movies finished where they did, even though I acknowledge that other groups doing a similar countdown might not have voted for them. Little Miss Sunshine, What We Do in the Shadows, Liar Liar, Scott Pilgrim, and even Mrs. Doubtfire — to me, these are emblematic of the preferences and tastes of our panel.
  • We’ll never have a way to know, but I wonder how well The Hangover would have done if the sequels never happened. It finished eighth despite the universe sour taste that the panel had for 2 and 3…you’d have to think a top-five finish was possible.
  • Tropic Thunder turned out to be an interesting case. It was tied for third with most votes (6) and received a first-place vote (from Jason) and still just missed the top 10. We’ve done a half dozen of these now and I can’t remember a nominee getting that kind of support and finishing in the 11-20 range.
  • Finally, Monty Python and the Holy Grail…another weird one. Eight out of 10 votes would usually get the job done to finish first, but nobody had it higher than third on their list (and most had it in the 15-20 range). Since the points are top-heavy, that was enough for Happy Gilmore (a first, a third and a fifth) and Anchorman (2 firsts and 4 more in the 11-15 range) to overtake it.

So that’s it for comedies. Jury’s still out on what we’re going to tackle next. It’ll either be in December or right when the new year starts, and one of the ideas we’re kicking around is revisiting the video games list. At first we thought it would just be an update, but the panel would also be different this time around. We’ll see what happens when the time comes.

RELATED LINKS

Introduction

Honorable Mention

#100-76

#75-51

#50-26

(25) The Princess Bride

(24) Shaun of the Dead

(23) Arsenic and Old Lace

(22) Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

(21) The Big Lebowski

(20) Young Frankenstein

(19) Zombieland

(18) Liar Liar

(17) Blazing Saddles

(16) My Cousin Vinny

(15) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

(14) 21 Jump Street

(13) What We Do in the Shadows

(12) Airplane!

(11) Tropic Thunder

(10) Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

(9) Role Models

(8) The Hangover

(7) School of Rock

(6) Mrs. Doubtfire

(5) Zoolander

(4) Little Miss Sunshine

(3) Monty Python and the Holy Grail

(2) Happy Gilmore

(1) Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy

PREVIOUS TOP 25s:

Video Games

Pokemon

Male VG Characters

Female VG Characters

Zelda Items

Animated Movies

Advertisements

ATB’s Top 25 Comedies: (1) Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy


This is At the Buzzer’s countdown of the best 25 comedies of all-time. Our panel of 10 cast their votes, and we’ve been revealing the results one by one until today. Tomorrow, we’ll wrap everything up and look at the list as a whole.

And now, our number 1:

1) Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (7 votes, 434 points)

Brick, I’ve been meaning to talk to you about that. You should find yourself a safehouse or a relative close by. Lay low for a while, because you’re probably wanted for murder.

Chris: Our panel’s number one pick (and my own number one as well) ended up lapping the field. Anchorman flew past Happy Gilmore by more than 150 points — a first- and fourth-place vote’s worth. It received the second-most votes, being beaten only by Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It was the only film to earn multiple number ones. So while your mileage may vary, there’s little doubt that as far as our panel of 10 is concerned, Anchorman is the best.

This is my favorite comedy because I find almost all of it to be eminently quotable. Sure, there are some of the staples like a whale’s vagina and milk being a bad choice and I love lamp and being in a glass case of emotion. Those are great. But I find myself gravitating toward some of the more oddball stuff.

“I’m very important. I have many leather-bound books and my apartment smells of rich mahogany.”

“Where did you get those clothes, at the….toilet….store?”

“Well, I could be wrong, but I believe diversity is an old, old wooden ship that was used during the Civil War era.”

“The following is based on actual events. Only the names, locations and events have been changed.”

Honestly, I think my favorite scene in the movie is the second of two prank calls that Ron pulls on Veronica in the office. It’s so childish and stupid, but I love it, especially “you’re pathetic.” Man.

https://youtu.be/Kh5TT31NfSQ?t=53s

Look, I just like this movie a lot. I enjoy Jack Black’s cameo. I love Fred Willard’s exasperation with the entire news team and his frequent phone calls for his delinquent son. This is the most tolerable that Chris Parnell has ever been for me (actually, that’s not true, because Lazy Sunday still exists). There’s some fun cameos from the likes of Ben Stiller and Luke Wilson and Danny Trejo.  The jazz flute performance is wonderfully ridiculous.

I could list off a dozen other things, but ultimately this is the type of movie that you either get or you don’t. For someone like me who generally prefers quick, back-and-forth exchanges and subtle jokes you only get after a moment of reflection (like Brick spooning mayonnaise into a toaster), Anchorman scratched the itch perfectly. I’m glad to see it ended up as our number one.

Cary: Before Anchorman, the song “Afternoon Delight” used to conjure up images of well…y’know.

Well, whenever I hear it now, I think of Anchorman instead of what the song is actually about. I picture the cast (Brick most prominently, because he’s my favorite) belting out this song in pitch perfect harmonies at a moment in the movie when the audience least expects it. And it is a goddamn beautiful thing.  THAT is the power of this movie.

Okay, so maybe its power also lies in the fact that the movie exudes a ton of charm and gracefulness in its adult-minded humor (even though one might not think to apply the words “charm” and “grace” to Ron Burgundy, himself). When you think about how well the movie flows from one plot point to the next, it embraces silliness and seriousness together, and it treats the world of Ron Burgundy as fact rather than happenstance.  This lends to the overall believability of Burgundy’s character and those of his compatriots. And there’s also no pervading sense of meanness to undermine Burgundy’s actions. Sure, he’s a giant ass who needs to be put in his place,  but Will Ferrell imbued him with such a brilliant sense of self that it’s impossible to not root for him.

Humanity itself, in all its graciously fallibility, can make for the best comedies, And there’s no better display of what it means to be a human – a dumb, egotistical, and righteous human – than in Anchorman.

RELATED LINKS

Introduction

Honorable Mention

#100-76

#75-51

#50-26

(25) The Princess Bride

(24) Shaun of the Dead

(23) Arsenic and Old Lace

(22) Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

(21) The Big Lebowski

(20) Young Frankenstein

(19) Zombieland

(18) Liar Liar

(17) Blazing Saddles

(16) My Cousin Vinny

(15) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

(14) 21 Jump Street

(13) What We Do in the Shadows

(12) Airplane!

(11) Tropic Thunder

(10) Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

(9) Role Models

(8) The Hangover

(7) School of Rock

(6) Mrs. Doubtfire

(5) Zoolander

(4) Little Miss Sunshine

(3) Monty Python and the Holy Grail

(2) Happy Gilmore

PREVIOUS TOP 25s:

Video Games

Pokemon

Male VG Characters

Female VG Characters

Zelda Items

Animated Movies

ATB’s Top 25 Comedies: (2) Happy Gilmore


This is At the Buzzer’s countdown of the best 25 comedies of all-time. Our panel of 10 cast their votes, and we’re revealing the results one by one until we get to No. 1 on Tuesday, May 10.

And now, our number 2:

2) Happy Gilmore (5 votes, 279 points)

What’s this I hear about you breaking a rake and throwing it in the woods?

What? I didn’t break it. I was just testing its durability, and then I placed it in the woods because it’s made of wood and I just thought he should be with his family.

Chris: I’m surprised at how high this movie finished. Not in a disappointed or upset way (it was in my own top 5), just…I didn’t know other folks on the panel loved this as much as I did.

This is an extreme outlier for me because I’m not an Adam Sandler fan, but damn it, I love Happy Gilmore. Maybe it’s because I’ve been a mediocre golfer for 25 years, and I understand the frustration that boils inside of you on a bad shot — but you can’t let it out because golf courses are sacred, quiet, reverent places. Or maybe it’s because the movie is ridiculous and aggressively funny from start to finish. You decide.

Three supporting roles stand out to me. Carl Weathers is great as Chubbs, helping Happy navigate the rage-inducing world of putting and playing the piano in heaven like an angel. Christopher McDonald kills it as Shooter McGavin, the aloof and somewhat dumb professional who can’t understand why some upstart punk is ruining his pro tour. And then there’s Ben Stiller (another actor I don’t really love) in a small but surprisingly good role as the abusive orderly at the nursing home.

But this is Sandler’s show, and his work is why you can watch Happy Gilmore over and over. I get a kick out of watching him launch 400-yard drives that apparently kill people — a nice couple on the driving range, a man minding his own business on a boat. Anyone who has played golf also gets the feeling of four-putting (or five-putting, or six-putting) on a green and ruining your scorecard, and almost everyone has tried to step into Happy’s signature swing on the driving range.

…Okay, I wasn’t going to get through the whole thing without bringing up Bob Barker. I think his appearance has to be among the top 10 cameos in film history. Savvy watchers of The Price is Right may have noticed that Bob could occasionally get exasperated and sarcastic with especially dumb contestants, but for most people, his frustration with Happy in the pro-am tournament probably came out of nowhere. Then he destroys Happy in a fistfight, calls him a bitch as he walks away, and…I mean, what more could you want. Really.

Cary: Is everyone going to talk about Bob Barker? Because everyone probably should talk about Bob Barker. I doubt we’d be talking about this movie today if he hadn’t been in it. Granted, Happy Gilmore is, overall, one of Adam Sandler’s better movies. It’s got a fair plot that revolves around sweet and understandable intentions (Happy helping his grandmother), and it features good mix of intentional and unintentional comedy. Not everything Sandler does in the movie is funny, but his actions and reactions, as well as those of the rest of the cast, help bring everything together coherently. Happy Gilmore is one of those “watch anytime” movies because it’s easy and entertaining.

RELATED LINKS

Introduction

Honorable Mention

#100-76

#75-51

#50-26

(25) The Princess Bride

(24) Shaun of the Dead

(23) Arsenic and Old Lace

(22) Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

(21) The Big Lebowski

(20) Young Frankenstein

(19) Zombieland

(18) Liar Liar

(17) Blazing Saddles

(16) My Cousin Vinny

(15) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

(14) 21 Jump Street

(13) What We Do in the Shadows

(12) Airplane!

(11) Tropic Thunder

(10) Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

(9) Role Models

(8) The Hangover

(7) School of Rock

(6) Mrs. Doubtfire

(5) Zoolander

(4) Little Miss Sunshine

(3) Monty Python and the Holy Grail

PREVIOUS TOP 25s:

Video Games

Pokemon

Male VG Characters

Female VG Characters

Zelda Items

Animated Movies

ATB’s Top 25 Comedies: (3) Monty Python and the Holy Grail


This is At the Buzzer’s countdown of the best 25 comedies of all-time. Our panel of 10 cast their votes, and we’re revealing the results one by one until we get to No. 1 on Tuesday, May 10.

And now, our number 3:

3) Monty Python and the Holy Grail (8 votes, 252 points)

Listen, strange women lyin’ in ponds distributin’ swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.

Chris: I’m not even sure how much I need to say about Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Some would consider it the best comedy ever made. Damn near everyone is familiar with at least a scene or two from it. It’s the movie that received the most votes from our panel (one more than our No. 1 pick) and has endured for more than 40 years now.

I mean, it’s not for everyone. It’s a very eccentric and dry brand of British humor and I’m sure there are some scenes that some folks just don’t get. But even having seen this a half-dozen times or more, there are moments that just get me. My absolute favorite is pretty much the entirety of Lancelot’s quest to the swamp castle, with the exchange between the guards who simply don’t understand who’s allowed to go and who has to stay, and Lancelot’s extreme aggression in murdering an entire wedding party for what he thinks is the greater good. But everyone knows about the fabled white rabbit and the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch, and the Black Knight and his flesh wounds, and the questions three on the Bridge of Death. They’re comedy mainstays.

Even the film’s limited budget (half a million dollars! Really!) ends up being part of the joke, with men carrying coconuts instead of riding those expensive horses and blatantly obvious rabbit puppets going for the jugular.

Monty Python and the Holy Grail is equal parts absurdly silly and pointedly savvy, and its unique brand of humor still resonates today. It has a 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and is required viewing for damn near everyone.

Cary: Would any list of favorite comedies be complete without Monty Python and the Holy Grail? Nope, because it simply has to be in the mix. It’s one of the best compilations of comedic performances around. Even if you don’t care much for Monty Python in general, this is such a highly enjoyable and effortless film.

It’s near perfect in terms of comedic timing (the “air velocity of an unladen swallow” and “she’s a witch” scenes are testament to that), and it’s the epitome of classic dry, British humor, where it’s less about what you do and more about what you say, and how and when you say it. That’s not to say the movie’s not without visual gags, i.e. the Black Knight, but it’s not all about the visuals in the Airplane! vein. Monty Python and the Holy Grail is in its own category of comedies, a category that contains few, if any other, modern-day counterparts.

RELATED LINKS

Introduction

Honorable Mention

#100-76

#75-51

#50-26

(25) The Princess Bride

(24) Shaun of the Dead

(23) Arsenic and Old Lace

(22) Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

(21) The Big Lebowski

(20) Young Frankenstein

(19) Zombieland

(18) Liar Liar

(17) Blazing Saddles

(16) My Cousin Vinny

(15) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

(14) 21 Jump Street

(13) What We Do in the Shadows

(12) Airplane!

(11) Tropic Thunder

(10) Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

(9) Role Models

(8) The Hangover

(7) School of Rock

(6) Mrs. Doubtfire

(5) Zoolander

(4) Little Miss Sunshine

PREVIOUS TOP 25s:

Video Games

Pokemon

Male VG Characters

Female VG Characters

Zelda Items

Animated Movies

ATB’s Top 25 Comedies: (4) Little Miss Sunshine


This is At the Buzzer’s countdown of the best 25 comedies of all-time. Our panel of 10 cast their votes, and we’re revealing the results one by one until we get to No. 1 on Tuesday, May 10.

And now, our number 4:

4) Little Miss Sunshine (3 votes, 234 points)

Anyway, he uh… he gets down to the end of his life, and he looks back and decides that all those years he suffered, those were the best years of his life, ’cause they made him who he was. All those years he was happy? You know, total waste. Didn’t learn a thing. So, if you sleep until you’re 18… ah, think of the suffering you’re gonna miss. I mean high school? High school — those are your prime suffering years. You don’t get better suffering than that.

Chris: In a lot of ways, Little Miss Sunshine is an outlier compared to most of the rest of our list. It’s a multiple Academy Award winner, a Sundance Film Festival darling and a big-time box office overachiever, turning an $8 million budget into triple figures internationally. It’s also very different tonally; while there are moments that are funny in the traditional sense, there are also stretches that you might only think are funny if you’ve been stuck in a similar malaise in your life.

Still, in the theater of the bizarre, Little Miss Sunshine reigns supreme. Some of my favorite moments are when the film decides it’s just going to be as ridiculous as possible, like when the family has to push the van to get it started and then jump in the side while it’s moving, or when Grandpa dies of an overdose and the family has to bring his body on the road trip with them. And then there’s the oft-referenced finale, where any semblance of sanity goes out the window and preteen girls are sexualized and breakout star Abigail Breslin dances to Super Freak and the whole family joins in.

Thanks to the stellar work of its ensemble cast, Little Miss Sunshine stands out as a movie that entertains in unexpected ways. Your mileage may vary on its more awkward and uncomfortable situations, but I was a fan.

Cary: I don’t think I was in the mood for Little Miss Sunshine when I saw it, because it didn’t register as typically “funny” to me. It was billed as being something uproarious, but it wasn’t. It was charming and sweet and silly and annoying at times. But its humor was dark and offputting. Dark comedies are hit or miss for me, and this one wasn’t worth a second showing.

RELATED LINKS

Introduction

Honorable Mention

#100-76

#75-51

#50-26

(25) The Princess Bride

(24) Shaun of the Dead

(23) Arsenic and Old Lace

(22) Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

(21) The Big Lebowski

(20) Young Frankenstein

(19) Zombieland

(18) Liar Liar

(17) Blazing Saddles

(16) My Cousin Vinny

(15) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

(14) 21 Jump Street

(13) What We Do in the Shadows

(12) Airplane!

(11) Tropic Thunder

(10) Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

(9) Role Models

(8) The Hangover

(7) School of Rock

(6) Mrs. Doubtfire

(5) Zoolander

PREVIOUS TOP 25s:

Video Games

Pokemon

Male VG Characters

Female VG Characters

Zelda Items

Animated Movies

ATB’s Top 25 Comedies: (5) Zoolander


This is At the Buzzer’s countdown of the best 25 comedies of all-time. Our panel of 10 cast their votes, and we’re revealing the results one by one until we get to No. 1 on Tuesday, May 10.

And now, our number 5:

5) Zoolander (4 votes, 216 points)

I wasn’t like every other kid, you know, who dreams about being an astronaut, I was always more interested in what bark was made out of on a tree. Richard Gere’s a real hero of mine. Sting. Sting would be another person who’s a hero. The music he’s created over the years, I don’t really listen to it, but the fact that he’s making it, I respect that. I care desperately about what I do. Do I know what product I’m selling? No. Do I know what I’m doing today? No. But I’m here, and I’m gonna give it my best shot.

Chris: Zoolander debuted a little over two weeks after 9/11 to decent reviews and a respectable box office showing. America was still out of sorts after the tragedy, so it’s hard to say what (if any) effect that had on the movie’s returns. But you can say with certainty that it moved up people’s comedy lists over time.

What should we focus on first? The ludicrous amount of star power that’s here, even for just fleeting moments? Okay, sure. Obviously the film is carried at the top by Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson and Will Farrell, but once you go beyond that…my goodness. Here’s just a few that I like in particular (you owe it to yourself to go find a complete list): Jon Voight, David Duchovny, Patton Oswalt, David Bowie, Lance Bass, and my personal favorite, Billy Zane.

How about absurd dialogue? Hansel’s little soliloquy at the top is certainly touching, but what about teaching children to read if they can’t fit into the building? What about that damn Hansel being so hot right now? What about feeling like you’re taking crazy pills? What about saying with complete seriousness that two people are breakdance fighting?

Honestly, I think my favorite thing about Zoolander is that nearly everyone in the movie is a complete idiot, and they take turns going along with one another down that stupid road one minute, then questioning why a situation is so dumb the next.

I’m sure there’s someone out there who’s been paying attention to this list saying “wait a minute, didn’t you knock Dumb and Dumber for being too stupid?” I suppose this movie just gets me for some reason. Sometimes you can’t explain funny.

Cary: I’ve never seen Zoolander. And it’s to the point now where I refuse to see it now just on principle.

RELATED LINKS

Introduction

Honorable Mention

#100-76

#75-51

#50-26

(25) The Princess Bride

(24) Shaun of the Dead

(23) Arsenic and Old Lace

(22) Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

(21) The Big Lebowski

(20) Young Frankenstein

(19) Zombieland

(18) Liar Liar

(17) Blazing Saddles

(16) My Cousin Vinny

(15) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

(14) 21 Jump Street

(13) What We Do in the Shadows

(12) Airplane!

(11) Tropic Thunder

(10) Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

(9) Role Models

(8) The Hangover

(7) School of Rock

(6) Mrs. Doubtfire

PREVIOUS TOP 25s:

Video Games

Pokemon

Male VG Characters

Female VG Characters

Zelda Items

Animated Movies

ATB’s Top 25 Comedies: (6) Mrs. Doubtfire


This is At the Buzzer’s countdown of the best 25 comedies of all-time. Our panel of 10 cast their votes, and we’re revealing the results one by one until we get to No. 1 on Tuesday, May 10.

And now, our number 6:

6) Mrs. Doubtfire (5 votes, 206 points)

Mr. Hillard, do you consider yourself humorous?

I used to. There was a time when I found myself funny, but today you have proven me wrong. Thank you.

Chris: We talked about Mrs. Doubtfire at length in episode 220 of the podcast, but it’s worth revisiting here. I’m most interested in the fact that this really isn’t a kids movie — in fact, it’s rated PG-13. That makes sense when you consider some of the more raunchy jokes and throwaway lines (there’s a reference to oral sex I didn’t even notice until my third or fourth viewing). But the subject matter also gets a bit real at times.

As a divorce kid myself, this movie spoke to me on all sorts of levels. I really appreciated the fact that even though there’s a happy ending of sorts, it isn’t 100% perfect — the parents can’t just set aside their differences and get back together again. For kids who have had their families split, there are a couple pretty dark scenes here. The one after the birthday party where Daniel and Miranda argue for what feels like 10 minutes comes to mind, but the real gut punch is the custody hearing where Daniel makes an impassioned plea about how important his children are to him…and gets shut down. To this day I still get upset at Robin Williams’ reaction to the bad news in that scene.

So why was this so high on my list? Because it’s genuinely funny outside of the more serious moments. It’s the perfect vehicle for Williams to bounce off the walls, and I thoroughly enjoy Sally Field and Pierce Brosnan’s smaller roles as well. Like we mentioned on the show, the movie even managed to handle cross-dressing without being ruthlessly offensive — if anything, it almost looks tame compared to some of the arguments we’re having in 2016.

Mrs. Doubtfire was a huge box office success that has become more beloved over time after releasing to somewhat tepid reviews. If for some reason you haven’t seen it, you should. Even if it’s campy and silly at times, it’s an outstanding reminder of why Robin Williams was so celebrated as a comedy mainstay.

Cary: In the canon of Robin Williams movies, I don’t know that a single one features his ability to morph into roles within a role as well as Mrs. Doubtfire. And it’s more than a “Robin Williams movie;” it’s a wonderfully easy comedy to watch. Plus, there’s a poignancy to it that never borders on melodrama. Everything Williams does, as wacky is it seems, is driven by his love of his family. The movie never forgets that. It’s a movie that’s very funny when it’s funny and very touching when it isn’t. And that dichotomy is woven together so seamlessly that it’s easy to forget you’re watching a movie altogether.

Michaela: Mrs. Doubtfire was one of those movies whose mature themes and storytelling didn’t make sense to me as a kid, but I still got a lot of kicks out of it because of how funny it was. Now that I’m older and can appreciate both the comedy and the maturity, Mrs. Doubtfire is one of my favorite comedies ever. It’s heartwarming, funny, emotional, and memorable all thanks to Robin Williams’ excellent performance as the cross-dressing dad who just wants to be with his kids.

RELATED LINKS

Introduction

Honorable Mention

#100-76

#75-51

#50-26

(25) The Princess Bride

(24) Shaun of the Dead

(23) Arsenic and Old Lace

(22) Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

(21) The Big Lebowski

(20) Young Frankenstein

(19) Zombieland

(18) Liar Liar

(17) Blazing Saddles

(16) My Cousin Vinny

(15) Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

(14) 21 Jump Street

(13) What We Do in the Shadows

(12) Airplane!

(11) Tropic Thunder

(10) Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

(9) Role Models

(8) The Hangover

(7) School of Rock

PREVIOUS TOP 25s:

Video Games

Pokemon

Male VG Characters

Female VG Characters

Zelda Items

Animated Movies