Let’s be honest, it was a tough year for comedy movies in terms of quantity, but that doesn’t mean that there wasn’t some greatness. Amy Schumer became a major celebrity this year after penning and starring in her first feature film- directed and produced by Judd Apatow, undeniably one of the biggest names in the business of creating comedy. Another legendary comedy director Paul Feig re-teamed up with Melissa McCarthy and created Spy, a virtually flawless action comedy. Seth Rogen’s fans got their annual dose of his brand of comedy with The Night Before, Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart had a solid hit on their hands with Get Hard. Indie fans have some strong choices with the critically heralded Lily Tomlin film Grandma and the very quirky and outrageous Jason Schwartzman plus Adam Scott indie comedy The Overnight, and Vacation proved to be a much stronger reboot than anyone expected. If you’re a fan of kids comedies, you have a lot to be excited about- Inside Out has been receiving nonstop raves for Amy Poehler, Lewis Black, Bill Hader, Mindy Kaling and Phyllis Smith’s portrayal of a young girl’s emotional state. Finally, Hateful Eight made a late debut for 2015 and managed to squeeze into our list of best comedies of the year, and it really does belong here. Although the film might more aptly be classified as a thriller, there’s more than enough comedy in QT’s latest to hit our top ten. Here’s the 10 we picked, you vote for the #1 comedy movie of 2015.
Last year Wes Anderson’s gorgeous Grand Budapest Hotel took the honors in this category. Scroll down to vote for this year’s champion.
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Trainwreck was directed by Judd Apatow written by Amy Schumer and based on her own past experience. This is the first movie that Apatow has directed that he did not write himself, and Schumer’s first movie. Trainwreck follows Amy as a girl who cannot deal with the concept of monogamy and how she handles the first guy that may be able to change that. Colin Quinn also steals the movie playing Amy’s father and there are some great roles by some of our favorite people sprinkled throughout. The film also features Bill Hader, Mike Birbiglia, Vanessa Bayer, John Cena and Dave Attell. An amazing first time out for Schumer, and a genuinely funny film that s destined to become a comedy classic.
Director/Writer Paul Feig teams back up with Melissa McCarthy to deliver you another amazing comedy with a woman in the lead role. McCarthy plays a desk-bound CIA agent that has to transition into a field agent while attempting to stop the sale of a black market suitcase nuke. It is an incredible mixture of action and comedy, something so many movies set out to do, but cannot seem to grasp the concept of. Feig and McCarthy are perfect together and the movie is exactly what it sets out to be. Put Spy on your must see list if you haven’t already caught it.
Vacation is the sequel/reboot/remake of the series that everyone grew up on, whether it was summer or winter. The Griswold family is back, this time Ed Helms plays Rusty, the son from the old movies is now a father himself and he wants to bring his kids to Wally World just like when he was a kid. The family encounters a lot of classic hijinx along the trip and you get to check in with a few more members of the Griswold gang you may have missed a whole lot. It had modest success at the box office, but this underrated sequel will surely become a cult classic given some time. Well made, genuinely funny, and surprisingly fresh for a reboot, we’re big fans and very happy to include Vacation in our top 10.
THE NIGHT BEFORE
It is hard to create a new Christmas classic in this day and age, Most of the classic holiday moves everyone loves have been around since your parents were sick of them growing up. Seth Rogen, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Anthony Mackie attempt to create their own with The Night Before. Three friends who meet every year on Christmas Eve and have their own special night get together, the film takes place on the last one they will get to spend together since they are getting older and have other responsibilities. This isn’t an old school christmas movie by any means though, there is a whole lot of drugs, drinking and debauchery.
In Lily Tomlins first starring role in 27 years she plays a lesbian poet coping with the death of her life-partner, when her 18-year old granddaughter shows up pregnant and in need of abortion money. The film is about their road trip and journey to come up with the money since they are both broke. Tomlin’s performance has been praised as superb in the role of cranky acidic Elie. Her performance speaks for itself and the rest of the cast is also excellent. Since its release in August, there have been whispers of multiple nominations for Tomlin, and they’d be well-earned.
It is great when two of the world biggest comedians can come together for one movie, especially two guys as hilarious and different from each other as Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart. Ferrell’s character is a hedge fund manager who is going to jail and gets the help of Kevin Hart, a valet who he THINKS is a tough guy from the streets who can help him out. The two play off each other well which creates some quotable lines and outrageous moments. The movie was a box office hit, and why wouldn’t it be. Two words, Ferrell and Hart.
Adam Scott, Taylor Schilling and Jason Schwartzman star in this smaller but hilarious movie. Alex and Emily are newcomers to Los Angeles and think they have found new friends when an eccentric couple invites them over to their house for a playdate between their kids. When the children pass out, the night gets more and more interesting fueled by plenty of booze and pot. Plenty of awkward moments that will have you laughing and there are surprises, twists and shocks throughout.
THE HATEFUL EIGHT
Is it a comedy? Is it a drama? Is it a thriller? Is it a western? Yes. Harvey Weinstein declared this year that Hateful Eight is indeed a comedy and promised that it contained more comedy than any Tarantino film to date. He was right. The genre defying filmmaker packed more comedy into his film than most movies that are classified as pure comedy, and he gets extra points from us for weaving his comedy seamlessly throughout the other aspects of the film without discounting the intensity of the thriller and dramatic elements. Unlike the 2015 film The Martian, which tried and succeeded in being classified as a comedy by some award-givers, the Hateful Eight is genuinely, laugh out loud funny, and purposefully so. It’s also one of the top ten films of the year and a worthy addition to the upper halves of your Tarantino rankings.
Pixar has released an amazing movie every year since Toy Story and this one is no different. This question asks viewers the question: What if feelings, had feelings? It goes inside the head of a young girl and characterizes all of her emotions as lovable characters voiced by Amy Poehler, Bill Hader, Lewis Black, Phyllis Smith and Mindy Kaling. Pixar always makes sure that even if the movies are meant for children, parents will find themselves and have a great time and everyone else doesn’t have to feel creepy going to see it.
SLEEPING WITH OTHER PEOPLE
Jason Sudekis and Allison Brie star in this romantic comedy about a womanizer with good intentions and a girl who constantly cheats on everyone who spark up a platonic friendship while an attraction between the two grows. Leslye Headland wrote and directed the film. Will Ferrell and Adam McKay served as producers. Natahsa Lyonne, Adam Scott, Adam Brody and Amanda Peet also had roles.
BONUS PICK: A VERY MURRAY CHRISTMAS
It’s not a movie, really, but it’s also not a television series, so Bill Murray’s Christmas Special gets recognized as a bonus pick in the movie category. Bill Murray is easily everyone’s favorite person. Period. People tell stories about mysterious and ridiculous encounters he has everyday. The man who starred in the Christmas classic Scrooged attempts to produce a new holiday special. Complete with great celebrity guests who casually drop by for a moment. It is another collaboration from the great team of Murray and Sofia Coppola. This Netflix movie will definitely be on everyone’s Christmas playlist from now on.