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best comedies on netflix 2020 wine country

Dunshire Productions/Netflix

How to stream the best comedies on Netflix

Everyone knows about Netflix's funniest shows, but its comedic films are just as great.

Oct 14, 2020, 12:00 pm*

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Anna María 

Anna María

What are the best comedies on Netflix? There are certainly a lot of candidates; we managed to find a list of 30 top Netflix comedy movies.

The service has a range of movies available to view, but after looking at this list, you might conclude comedy is king.

The best comedies on Netflix

1) A Futile and Stupid Gesture (2018)

A Futile and Stupid Gesture, Netflix’s feature film adaptation of Josh Karp’s 2006 book, arrives at an interesting time. As an exploration of the creation of humor mag National Lampoon and its odd-couple co-founders, Henry Beard (Domhnall Gleeson) and Doug Kenney (Will Forte), it’s removed enough from its 1970s origins to offer new insight into its generational influence. The Netflix comedy also re-contextualizes satire in 2020, amid an era littered with “fake news.” —Audra Schroeder

2) The Hangover (2009)

The Hangover, aka one of the best comedies of all time, features iconic performances from Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, and Ed Helms, which makes it perfect material for a Netflix funny movie night. These legends portray a trio of friends that wake up completely hungover after a wild night in Las Vegas. They have no idea what happened or why their friend Doug is missing, but the stakes are high as they frantically search for him before his wedding bells ring.

3) The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) (2017)

Noah Baumbach has successfully usurped Woody Allen’s title as the greatest living director of New York comedies. His latest love letter to the Big Apple comes in the form of The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected), a thoughtful meditation on the challenge of letting the pain caused by a parent go. Dustin Hoffman’s Harold Meyerowitz is an aging sculptor, largely overlooked in his time. His children—who Ben Stiller, Adam Sandler, and Elizabeth Marvel play—are all semi-dysfunctional, thanks to Harold’s over- or under-involved parenting. As a comedy, it certainly isn’t a laugh riot, but it absolutely leaves an impression. —Chris Osterndorf

4) The Incredible Jessica James (2017)

Netflix comedy The Incredible Jessica James opens on something many of us dating in 2020 are all too familiar with: a very bad Tinder date. The movie introduces us to James, who the truly incredible Jessica Williams plays, sitting with her match while engaging in terrible first date small talk. James shuts it down almost immediately, and, in brutally honest fashion, tells him all the reasons they are not going to “bone.”

From the first scene, we learn James is a character we can relate to but also admire. She’s one we can empathize with but also wish we were bold enough to be. Through her hilarious, genuine performance, Williams takes a script that is a typical millennial rom-com and turns it into something more. She fills out the character, grounds her in reality, and makes us laugh sympathetically as James tries to get her life together following a messy breakup and a low point in her career. —Sarah Jasmine Montgomery

5) Don’t Think Twice (2016)

It’s a movie about improv, but don’t think too much about it. Also don’t ask any questions and don’t say no. Mike Birbiglia directs and stars in this touching ensemble film about a close-knit improv troupe and the limits of “I’ve got your back.” —Audra Schroeder

6) The Standups (2018)

Over the last few years, Netflix has released more than a dozen hourlong standup specials, with a focus on big-ticket names: Silverman, Chappelle, Schumer, C.K. Netflix has become a destination for comedy fans who want marquee access to funny movies and people, but it’s also experimenting with formats and voices. The Standups is its way of experimenting with both. It’s a series of six standup specials from Deon Cole, Nikki Glaser, Fortune Feimster, Nate Bargatze, Beth Stelling, and Dan Soder. They’re comedians who might not be marquee names, but Netflix thinks they’re worth your time. —Audra Schroeder

7) Maniac (2018)

With its high-concept dream sequences and accomplished visual style, Maniac is a magnet for adjectives like “weird” and “trippy.” But amid all the musical numbers and surreal dives into the subconscious mind, it’s surprising how familiar this all feels. The show stars Annie (Emma Stone) and Owen (Jonah Hill). They both volunteer for a clinical trial that sends them into Inception-like dream universes designed to help them untangle their deepest traumas. Maniac aims to tell a story about mental illness and fractured family relationships, but it also embraces humor and ridiculousness over lofty, self-serious dialogue. A collection of highly desirable attributes put it several steps above the style-over-substance success of Legion, without being quite substantial enough to achieve its full potential. —Gavia Baker-Whitelaw

8) To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018)

The romantic comedy rebirth happened on Netflix, and it came with an in-house cast of heartthrobs. This was its most well-rounded title, the story of a teenager named Lara Jean (Lana Condor) and her stash of unsent love letters, which her well-meaning younger sister mails out. But the movie doesn’t stop at Lara Jean’s love life, as she attempts damage control and reconnects with one of her crushes (Noah Centineo) for another take on the fake-relationship-turns-real trope. It also explores high-school friendships and her relationship with her sisters, giving us a more complex sketch of a girl who isn’t just defined by the boys she’s loved. —Audra Schroeder

9) Wine Country (2019)

best comedies on netflix 2020 wine country
Dunshire Productions/Netflix

“First-time feature director Amy Poehler plays Abby, the bossy, type-A friend who has just lost her job and is funneling that frustration into a structured weekend in Napa Valley. She’s joined by Rebecca (Rachel Dratch), a therapist who’s celebrating her 50th birthday and languishing in a bad marriage; Naomi (Maya Rudolph), a stressed-out mom; Catherine (Ana Gasteyer), a workaholic restaurant owner who’s a much calmer version of Gasteyer’s Lady Dynamite character; Val (Paula Pell), who runs a vintage shop and just got new knees; and anxious writer Jenny (Emily Spivey, who co-wrote the script with fellow Saturday Night Live alum Liz Cackowski). Tina Fey makes a welcome addition as Tammy, the gruff, edible soap-making owner of the Airbnb.” —Audra Schroeder

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10) Someone Great (2019)

best comedies on netflix 2020 someone great
Feigco Entertainment/Netflix

Someone Great tells a tale about life transitions and the growing pains that come with getting older. It’s a coming-of-age story for twenty-somethings; it’s about turning 30, transitioning out of your twenties, and saying goodbye to people and places that no longer belong in your life. Someone Great is heart-wrenching because it’s relatable and challenges viewers with the concept that sometimes the best decision for yourself is the hardest one to make.” —Tess Cagle

11) Oh, Hello on Broadway (2017)

If you’re already a fan, I assume you’ve stopped reading to go watch the special. Nevertheless, here’s a brief setup for newcomers adding Oh, Hello to their 2020 comedy queue on Netflix: Gil and George are turtleneck-rocking bachelors from the Upper West Side, played by the two of the best comedians out there. John Mulaney, best known for his standup and work on Saturday Night Live (he wrote Stefon bits with and for Bill Hader), is the nominal lead in Oh, Hello. As George, he introduces most of the premises and stops sporadically to scold the unfortunate stagehand. Nick Kroll (The League and Kroll Show), is marginally more unruly as Gil, who walks the stage like a septuagenarian praying mantis. Mulaney and Kroll are incredible improvisers, and they leave themselves plenty of room within the show’s structure for spontaneity. —Eddie Strait

12) Mr. Roosevelt (2017)

best netflix comedies - mr roosevelt
Movieclips Indie/YouTube

In her directorial debut, Noel Wells (Master of None, SNL) plays Emily Martin. She’s a struggling YouTube-famous comedian who hastily moves back to her hometown of Austin and has to adjust to the new relationships around her—and the death of a cat. It’s a love letter to a time and place, though not exactly a love story. Emily is directionless, but her self-discovery includes some very relatable moments and a great Holly Hunter impression. —Audra Schroeder

13) The Kissing Booth (2018)

best comedies on netflix 2020 the kissing booth
Movieclips Indie/YouTube

The Kissing Booth “follows Elle Evans [Joey King] as she begins her junior year of high school in Los Angeles, alongside her best friend, Lee Flynn (Joel Courtney). Over the summer, Elle has gone through puberty and on her first day of school—when, of course, only a tiny skirt is available in her closet to wear—boys take notice, to the dismay of Lee’s older brother, Noah (Jacob Elordi) who tells every boy in school to stay away from her because he wants to ‘protect’ her.” —Tess Cagle

14) Otherhood (2019)

best comedies on netflix 2020 otherhood
Mandalay Pictures/Netflix

Otherhood stars Angela Bassett, Patricia Arquette, and Felicity Huffman as Carol, Gillian, and Helen, respectively—a trio of women struggling to define themselves beyond their roles as mothers. Lifelong friends and emotional support beams, these women want nothing more than to feel acknowledged and validated by their thirty-something sons. But their sons don’t need them—or they’re at least too self-absorbed to know what they need. After a disappointing Mother’s Day, Carol, Gillian, and Helen leave their upper-middle-class homes and hit the road to spend some time with their sons in New York City.” —Eddie Strait

15) I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore (2017)

Melanie Lynskey and Elijah Wood team up to redefine the buddy-cop movie in Macon Blair’s directorial debut. Blair took his own personal experience of being robbed and feeling helpless and channeled it into this dark comedy about justice, boundaries, and friendship. It’s a revenge movie with hapless victims and perpetrators, which only lends to the titular worldview—and the comedic moments. —Audra Schroeder

16) Mascots (2016)

Mascots marks Christopher Guest’s return to mockumentaries with a Netflix original. Mainstays like Parker Posey, Jane Lynch, and John Michael Higgins pop up in this film about a mascot competition, mirroring Guest’s Best in Show. It lacks the structure and comedic heft of his past films, but it does boast a Parker Posey dance sequence. —Audra Schroeder

17) Murder Mystery (2019)

best comedies on netflix 2020 murder mystery
Netflix

A comedy worthy of your 2020 Netflix funny movie queue, Murder Mystery “reunites [Adam] Sandler with his Just Go With It co-star Jennifer Aniston to play married couple Nick and Audrey Spitz. Audrey is a hairdresser, and Nick is an NYPD officer who can’t pass his detective exam. They’re a cozy couple, the kind that buys each other Amazon gift cards as anniversary gifts because they’re both practical and out of ideas. They get knocked out of their comfort zone when Nick takes Audrey on an impromptu trip to Europe for their 15th anniversary.” —Eddie Strait

18) Frances Ha (2012)

Noah Baumbach is having an incredibly prolific late career. He’s churned out Greenberg, The Squid and the Whale, Mistress America, Margot at the Wedding, and While We’re Young in an amazing decade-long stretch. During that span, he also made Frances Ha, a riff on Annie Hall as seen through the lens of Godard, Truffaut, and the masters of the French New Wave. Instead of watching a couple slowly drift apart, Baumbach tracks the dissolution of a best friendship between Frances (Greta Gerwig, in her star-making role) and Sophie (Mickey Sumner). It’s not only a lovely Woody Allen homage but one of cinema’s best portraits of millennial disaffection to date. —Nico Lang

19) Love Wedding Repeat (2020)

Hunger Games hunk Sam Claflin shines in this 2020 release, one of Netflix’s newest romantic comedies. The film showcases parallel versions of one fateful moment in the life of Jack (Claflin), who’s been saddled with the duty of facilitating his sister’s wedding day. No matter the universe, he finds himself having to fend off her toxic ex (while steering clear of his own) and falling for his sister’s old friend. Ultimately, no matter what mayhem ensues, Jack realizes that love really is all up to chance.

20) Mr. Right (2015) 

best comedies on netflix 2020 mr right
Notorious Pictures/Netflix

Anna Kendrick and Sam Rockwell join forces as an unexpected but delightful duo in this one-of-a-kind action-comedy. The film centers on Martha (Kendrick), who’s been struggling in more ways than one since her recent breakup. She decides to meet the intriguing Francis (Rockwell), only to realize he’s actually an assassin. There’s just one twist, though: Francis doesn’t take out his targets. He kills the people who hire him. This comedy is one of the best on Netflix in 2020—there won’t be anything like it in your queue.


WATCH: 10 Best Standup Comedy Specials on Netflix

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZO6vKBvKShM

21) Catching Feelings (2018)

South African film Catching Feelings follows the young academic Max and his wife, Sam. A combination of money problems, infidelity, and an older white writer moving into their home in Johannesburg tests their relationship. Watching it on Netflix in 2020, it may feel like an Owen Wilson comedy, but the layered film explores racial tension and gentrification in South Africa. Kagiso Lediga’s ambitious turn as star and director pays off despite its slow pacing. —Tess Cagle

22) Win It All (2017)

Jake Johnson helms this film about a gambling addict and the duffel bag that starts the domino effect. Director Joe Swanberg follows up Drinking Buddies with another tale of a hapless guy in over his head and adds in some memorable scenes with Joe Lo Truglio and Keegan-Michael Key. —Audra Schroeder

23) Just Friends (2005) 

best comedies on netflix 2020 just friends
Inferno Distribution/Netflix

Anna Faris and Ryan Reynolds make for a powerful early 2000s duo. That duo works extraordinarily well in Just Friends, one of the best comedies on Netflix.

Faris stars as Samantha James, a hilariously unpredictable pop star. Reynolds, meanwhile, plays Chris, an endearing ex-dweeb who finds himself just as “friend-zoned” by Jamie Palamino (Amy Smart) during adulthood as he was when they were in high school. Just Friends would be a delightful addition to any list of funny movies on Netflix in 2020—15 years after its release.

24) Deidra & Laney Rob a Train (2017)

Two sisters must become survivalists and scrape together a way to get their mother out of jail. That premise doesn’t really scream comedy, but Deidra (Ashleigh Murray) and Laney (Rachel Crow) have great chemistry. It’s one of the entertaining, empowering capers you’ll see. —Audra Schroeder

25) War Machine (2017)

Watching this 2009 Brad Pitt film in today’s drastically different political landscape feels almost quaint. Pitt is barely recognizable as Gen. Glenn McMahon, a mirror of Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the subject of Michael Hastings’ 2012 book The Operators. Animal Kingdom’s David Michôd turns the lens on the war in Afghanistan and toes the line between pitch-black comedy and satire. —Audra Schroeder

26) Little Evil (2017)

Evil comes home to roost in Eli Craig’s horror-comedy Little Evil. The film follows a stepdad (Adam Scott) and his complicated relationship with his stepson, who happens to be the Antichrist. Fun times, and I don’t mean that sarcastically. Despite a few tense moments, the Netflix movie is more funny than horror, qualifying it for this best-of list. Craig takes a tired premise and injects life (and plenty of jokes) into it. Aside from Scott, the pitch-perfect cast also includes Evangeline Lilly, Bridget Everett, Donald Faison, and Chris D’Elia. —Eddie Strait

27) Fun Mom Dinner (2017)

best comedies on netflix 2020 fun mom dinner
Netflix/YouTube

Hereditary and Knives Out star Toni Colette shows off her comedic chops in Fun Mom Dinner. The movie is a kooky suburban mom romp the likes of Bachelorette, Bad Moms, and Girls Trip. Pop on Netflix to watch this funny movie that centers on four moms. Frustrated with the trappings of motherhood, they treat themselves to a dinner party. However, the party gets out of control as things don’t go quite according to plan.

28) Set It Up (2018)

Set It Up stars Zoey Deutch and Glen Powell playing stressed-out assistants seeking to hitch their powerful bosses, ably played by Taye Diggs and Lucy Liu. However, the veteran actors provide immediate service to the compelling Deutch and Powell, whose rare charm charges up this plucky, if imperfect, film.” —Kahron Spearman

29) Dude (2018)

Dude is the story of four friends attempting to navigate their changing lives leading up to high school graduation.

Netflix essentially billed it as a funny stoner movie, dropping it intentionally on 4/20. While there is a lot of pot-smoking in the movie, there’s more going on, helping it onto our list of the best comedies on Netflix.

If anything, Dude is a coming-of-age dramedy containing some very funny moments but also a few very serious ones. In other words, a female Superbad this ain’t. Chris Osterndorf

30) Happy Anniversary (2018)

Romance is easy. Love is hard. Romantic comedies, even Netflix ones, are even harder. Sam and Mollie, played by Ben Schwartz and Noël Wells, spend their third anniversary debating their future as a couple. As the movie progresses, the story presents a more compelling case for the couple breaking up than staying together. The performances play into that, and both shine brighter in the fight scenes. But at a scant 78-minute runtime, Happy Anniversary is a minimal time investment with enough charm to get by.  —Eddie Strait


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*First Published: May 1, 2020, 8:00 am