The famous entertainment adage goes “dying is easy, comedy is hard.” Well these comedies that are currently available on Tubi TV somehow make it look easy.
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Here’s a tease at the best comedies on Tubi TV right now.
Bernie is an independent film that slipped under most people’s radar when it was released in 2011, but the dark comedy from Richard Linklater starring Jack Black, Matthew McConaughey and Shirley MacLaine proved to be a hidden gem for those who have watched it.
Black, in one of his career best performances, stars as a kindly mortician in a small Texas town who strikes up a friendship with a wealthy, cantankerous widow (MacLaine), who quickly begins to try and control Bernie’s life. Bernie then goes to great lengths to escape her grasp. McConaughey stars as a lawyer. The film is shot partly in a documentary style, including interviews with some characters as the narrative plays out.
Linklater has had bigger movies with Black (School of Rock) and McConaughey (Dazed and Confused), but Bernie proves that the trio have a special chemistry when they get together.
City Island (2009)
A little seen indie gem, City Island is a classic story of a dysfunctional family but distinguishes itself with some great performances from Andy Garcia, Julianna Margulies and Emily Mortimer.
Garcia stars as a prison guard who secretly wants to be an actor. After realizing that one of the prisoners is his 24-year-old love child, he decides to bring him home to stay with his family. However, he chooses to keep the familial relationship a secret, which of course raises complications.
Ezra Miller, Steve Strait and Dominik Garcia makeup the rest of the family, while Alan Arkin is on hand with a supporting turn.
The trailer for Dolemite features a quote from The New York Times calling it “the Citizen Kane of kung fu pimpin’ movies.” The venerable paper may never have given a better endorsement than that.
A classic example of the Blaxploitation genre of films from the 1970s, Dolemite is about a pimp recently released from jail who goes about getting revenge on the gangster and corrupt police who framed him.
Eddie Murphy portrayed Rudy Ray Moore, the star and creator of Dolemite, in Netflix’s Dolemite Is My Name, but you can see the phenomenon that made Moore a legend for yourself on Tubi.
Four Lions (2010)
Riz Ahmed is an Oscar-nominated actor for Sound of Metal, but 11 years ago many people were first introduced to Ahmed in the British comedy Four Lions.
Four Lions follows a group of British Muslims who continuously prove to be incompetent as they train to commit an act of terror. If that doesn’t seem like something that would be too comedic, watch the trailer above and you’ll get why these characters will get you laughing.
Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994)
One of the most iconic romantic comedies of the 1990s, Four Weddings and a Funeral follows a group of friends as they gather for a number of social events over the course of a year. At each event, Charles (Hugh Grant) continues to form a budding relationship with Carrie (Andie MacDowell).
Four Weddings and a Funeral charmed both audiences and the Academy in 1994, as it ended up with a Best Picture nomination and a Best Original Screenplay nom for Richard Curtis.
Hulu attempted to recapture some of the magic of the film with its own Four Weddings and a Funeral series, but the original remains the quintessential version.
Guys and Dolls (1955)
Marlon Brando sings! That’s not the joke though (OK, it is a little funny/weird the first couple times you hear him). Brando stars in the film adaptation of the popular Broadway musical Guys and Dolls, alongside Frank Sinatra.
Guys and Dolls is about Brando’s professional gambler taking a bet to woo a pious female missionary on a trip to Havana, which his friend, played by Sinatra, hopes will give him the funds to put on a massive crap game.
Brando gives a suave performance alongside Jean Simmons (playing the missionary), while Sinatra is plenty of fun as the sly, always scheming Nathan Detroit.
Heathers is the 1980s equivalent of Mean Girls. Heathers is about how a high school is divided and ruled by a group of cliques, particularly a trio of popular girls named Heather. But when an insider to the cliques enlists the help of a mysterious new student to change the social system of the school, things quickly take a deadly turn.
Winona Ryder stars alongside Christian Slater in the dark high school comedy, which in addition to Beetlejuice the same year helped Ryder break out into stardom.
Heathers is often cited as one of the best movies about the high school experience.
His Girl Friday (1940)
Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell should get speeding tickets for as fast as they sling out one liners in Howard Hawks’ His Girl Friday, one of the best comedies of all-time.
Grant plays a newspaper editor who will stop at nothing to prevent his top reporter, and ex wife, from remarrying and leaving the newspaper. Covering a prison break gets thrown in for good measure.
Some people claim that black and white movies are slow and boring. Watching His Girl Friday is an easy way to cure anyone of that claim.
Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016)
If you’re a fan of Thor: Ragnarok and/or Jojo Rabbit and you haven’t gone further back into Taika Waititi’s catalog, you owe it to yourself to do so as quickly as possible. A great place to start is with Hunt for the Wilderpeople, his 2016 comedy starring Sam Neill and Julian Dennison.
Hunt for the Wilderpeople follows an orphaned teenager who goes off the grid with his cantankerous foster uncle in the New Zealand bush. They just want to be left alone, but soon a national manhunt ensues.
Waititi’s unique voice and wit are on full display here.
My Man Godfrey (1936)
The 1930s were a golden age for screwball comedy, and one of the most famous examples of this is My Man Godfrey, starring William Powell and Carole Lombard.
The plot revolves around a ditzy socialite (Lombard) who ends up bringing a vagabond (Powell) home to serve as her new family butler. However, there is Godfrey than initially meets the eye.
Comedy tastes change as the years go by, but good comedies can make us laugh no matter what era they come from. My Man Godfrey is one of those films.
Paris, je T’aime (2006)
Paris, je T’aime (or Paris, I Love You for those of us who don’t speak French) is a collection of short films from some of the best filmmakers of the time, including Olivier Assayas, the Coen brothers, Wes Craven, Alfonso Cuarón, Alexander Payne, Daniela Thomas and Tom Tykwer. Each director brought their own spin to the film, but a number of the vignettes are of the comedic variety.
Paris, je T’aime would spawn similar style movies set in other major metropolitans, but few have been able to capture the magic of this collaboration.
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
A popular ingredient for a comedy is a loving, dysfunctional family, and that is certainly the case for Silver Linings Playbook. The Solitano family (portrayed by Bradley Cooper, Robert De Niro, Jacie Weaver and Shea Whigham) at the center of Silver Linings Playbook is a boisterous Philadelphia family that you can’t help but love as they try and adjust to life following their son Pat’s bipolar diagnosis.
Helping out are a bunch of characters outside the family, led by Jennifer Lawrence’s brash Tiffany, Pat’s therapist Dr. Patel (Anupam Kher), Pat’s friends Ronnie and Danny (John Ortiz, Chris Tucker) and Pat Sr’s bookie Randy (Paul Herman).
Sing Street (2016)
Sing Street revolves around a plucky Irish teenager in the 1980s who attempts to impress a girl he likes by saying that he is in a band (classic move, kid). However, he actually puts together a band together with kids at his school that really do rock.
John Carney’s films all revolve around the power of music in one way or another, and in Sing Street he uses it to show a boy’s growing confidence in himself. It is a sweet, funny and rocking story.
This quirky British comedy comes from a particularly quirky Brit, Richard Ayoade, who both wrote and directed the film about a teenager who has two main objectives as he turns 15: lose his virginity before his next birthday and quell any potential relationship between his mother and her former lover.
Craig Roberts, Sally Hawkins, Paddy Considine, Noah Taylor and Yasmin Page star in Submarine, which found critical and awards on both sides of the Atlantic.
Michael Balderston is a D.C.-based entertainment writer and content producer for What to Watch. He previously has written for TV Technology and Awards Circuit.
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