Mental Floss

The 10 Best Comedies to Stream on Netflix Right Now

Jake Rossen
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels in 'Dumb and Dumber' (1994).
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels in 'Dumb and Dumber' (1994). / New Line Cinema

If you've gotten your last laugh out of your reliable comedies, there's hope: Netflix has a terrific selection of classics and contemporary hits, including a handful of originals. Check out 10 of the funniest movies currently streaming on the service.

1. Rush Hour (1998)

Jackie Chan had his first big Hollywood hit with this buddy comedy about a Hong Kong cop (Chan) forced to team with an LAPD cop (Chris Tucker) to rescue a diplomat's kidnapped daughter. The movie actually helped inspire the creation of the Rotten Tomatoes website: co-founder Senh Duong was anticipating the movie but was frustrated he couldn't find many reviews for it easily. He envisioned an aggregate review site, and RT was born.

2. The Nice Guys (2016)

Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling make an unlikely buddy pairing in this comedy written and directed by Shane Black. In 1970s Los Angeles, the two detectives bumble through a seedy underworld to find a missing girl. Black originally wrote it as a television show pilot before deciding it worked better as a movie.

3. Always Be My Maybe (2019)

Ali Wong was already an accomplished stand-up, but this romantic comedy cemented her irresistible charms, as she plays a celebrity chef reconnecting as an adult with her childhood crush (played by Randall Park). The Asian-led cast and crew give the film a wonderfully unique perspective, even as those details underscore the universality of its ultimate truths. Meanwhile, Internet Boyfriend Keanu Reeves plays himself as a love interest for Wong’s character: He agreed to the role because he's a big fan of Wong's stand-up.

4. Dolemite Is My Name (2019)

Eddie Murphy returned to form with this funny and moving biopic of Rudy Ray Moore, a struggling stand-up comic in the 1970s who finds his big break as Dolemite, a butt-kicking alter ego that became the subject of Moore's low-budget film debut. Murphy met Moore several times before Moore's passing. Murphy once said that Moore wanted to go on a comedy tour with him.

5. The Fundamentals of Caring (2016)

The ever-reliable Paul Rudd stars in this amiable indie film about a writer who takes on a side hustle as a caregiver for a teen (Craig Roberts) with muscular dystrophy. Naturally, lessons are learned, but it's also a prime example of the affability that's made Rudd one of the more pleasant screen actors of the past two decades. The film is based on author Jonathan Evison's 2012 book The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving: It underwent a title change.

6. Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016)

En route to turning Thor into the comedic lunkhead he was always meant to be in Ragnarok, writer-director Taika Waititi crafted this sweetly irreverent story about a Tupac-obsessed orphan (Julian Dennison) who teams up with his reluctant foster father (Sam Neill) to evade the cops after an overzealous child welfare worker (Rachel House) decides he is in imminent danger. Waititi’s idiosyncratic humor and irresistible sentimentality are both vividly on display in this affecting, woefully under-appreciated comedy that's based on the 2005 book Wild Pork and Watercress by Barry Crump.

7. National Lampoon's Vacation (1983)

Chevy Chase debuts as beleaguered family man Clark Griswold, who will do anything in his power to get his family to Walley World in this classic from John Hughes. John Candy's appearance late in the film as a park security guard was added in reshoots after the original ending--where Clark gets quite a bit more violent with Roy Walley--tested poorly with audiences.

8. Paddington (2014)

This charming adaptation of the popular ursine launched a franchise. Colin Firth was originally cast as the voice of Paddington before he mutually parted ways with the production; Ben Whishaw replaced him.

9. I Love You, Man (2009)

Jason Segel and Paul Rudd are best bros in this comedy about a groom-to-be (Rudd) who finds new purpose with his new buddy and best man (Segel). The two previously appeared in Knocked Up (2007) and Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008).

10. The Mitchells vs. the Machines (2021)

The minds behind 2019's Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse have another winningly irreverent animated film on tap. The slightly dysfunctional Mitchell family has to contend with technology gone awry—but to save the human race, they'll have to interrupt their vacation. The movie was such a critical hit that Netflix decided to offer it as a limited theatrical release six months after it began streaming.

A version of this story ran in 2020; it has been updated for 2022.