The 20 Best Comedies New to Streaming in January
It's a brand new year, which means that in addition to immediately breaking all of your resolutions within like a day or so, there’s a slew of new stuff on streaming services. So why not laugh your hangover away (stranger things have happened) with some great comedies, like…
Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II (HBO Max)
Unless you’re a floating green blob who hates laughter, there’s a good chance that you already love Ghostbusters. And, of course, there’s also the sequel, Ghostbusters II, for audiences who thought the original had a glaring lack of babies and art conservation.
Not to be confused with the murderless show for teens no one remembers, the original 1985 Clue is a fantastic ensemble murder mystery comedy full of one-liners, double entendres and several deadly weapons of debatable practicality.
Back to School (HBO Max)
Rodney Dangerfield heads to college in what is arguably his best movie (sorry, Meet Wally Sparks). Any comedy featuring a supporting cast of Sam Kinison, Robert Downey Jr. and Kurt Vonnegut can’t be bad.
“Adam Sandler, the action movie star” never really happened, but he co-starred in the underrated 1996 buddy cop movie Bulletproof along with Damon Wayans. Sure, it’s just a thinly-veiled remake of Midnight Run, but it’s, as far as we know, the only movie where a gun-toting Sandler battles James Caan. Speaking of Midnight Run…
Midnight Run (Peacock)
We’ve written before about the comic genius of Charles Grodin, and that was never more apparent than in the great Robert De Niro action-comedy about a mob accountant being escorted across the country by a gruff bail bondsman.
The original 2002 comedy stars Ice Cube as the owner of a financially-doomed barbershop. There’s also Cedric the Entertainer as the troublesome, older Eddie, whose dialogue concerning Civil Rights icons such as Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King Jr. sparked a major controversy when it first came out.
The Cabin in the Woods (HBO Max)
More than a decade after its release, Drew Goddard’s The Cabin in the Woods still holds up as a sharp sci-fi deconstruction of familiar horror tropes and a tongue-in-cheek examination of why we’re so drawn to witnessing fictional acts of human suffering. Plus, Thor’s in it.
The ‘Burbs (Netflix)
Directed by Gremlins’ Joe Dante, The ’Burbs is a slapstick farce about suburban paranoia starring Tom Hanks and Carrie Fisher. Sadly, the Satanic Panic themes are as relevant today as ever before — less sadly, it’s still a ton of fun.
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (Netflix)
A Torontonian slacker is forced to fight his new girlfriend’s evil exes in Edgar Wright’s beloved adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s series of graphic novels. This movie gets a lot of love for its inventive visuals, but it’s also basically a musical, with catchy tunes provided by acts like Beck and Broken Social Scene.
A League of Their Own (Hulu)
The original Geena Davis-starring A League of Their Own is one of the greatest baseball movies ever and was recently remade as an Amazon streaming series. Speaking of “streaming,” this movie arguably marks the high point of the Tom Hanks Has to Pee Cinematic Universe.
subtitle]Twins (Netflix) Danny DeVito and Arnold Schwarzenegger made movie magic with Twins — before making whatever the opposite of movie magic is with Junior.
Danny DeVito and Arnold Schwarzenegger made movie magic with Twins — before making whatever the opposite of movie magic is with Junior.
The Naked Gun (Paramount+)
Simply one of the funniest movies ever made, The Naked Gun is still hilarious — and watching it now also serves as a touching tribute to the life of Queen Elizabeth II.
A Fish Called Wanda (Paramount+)
Before John Cleese devoted all his time to desperately and embarrassingly trying to be canceled on social media, he co-wrote and starred in this classic 1988 comedy with Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Palin and Kevin Kline (who won an Oscar for playing the dim-witted hothead Otto).
The King of Comedy (Hulu)
The Jurassic Park to Joker’s Carnosaur, Martin Scorsese’s The King of Comedy is one of the best black comedies Hollywood has ever made. Come for Robert De Niro’s performance as obsessive stand-up Rupert Pupkin, and stay for Sandra Bernhard as his unhinged superfan accomplice.
The 40-Year-Old Virgin (Hulu)
Unless the whole incel thing has completely ruined the central premise, Judd Apatow’s 2005 comedy is still a sweet, funny rom-com (with the exception of the regrettable "you know how I know you're gay?" scene).
The last SNL movie (until they inevitably write David S. Pumpkins into the next Knives Out sequel), MacGruber is also one of the best. What started out as a quick-burst MacGyver parody on TV was expanded into an over-the-top action-filled farce. Kudos to Val Kilmer for taking the ridiculously-named villain role and playing it so straight.
Bull Durham (Paramount+)
A sexy baseball movie starring Kevin Costner was like a friggin’ Avatar movie to audiences back in the 1980s. Also giving us great stuff from Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins, Bull Durham is an iconic romantic comedy for a reason (and a key inspiration for Ted Lasso).
Step Brothers (Peacock)
Before they were busy trampling on the legacy of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly made the hysterical Step Brothers about two of the manchild-iest manchildren ever committed to film.
Sorry to Bother You (Prime)
The surreal masterpiece directed by Boots Riley is new to Amazon Prime, which is funny considering that much of the movie is about an Amazon-like company that (SPOILERS) literally wants to turn its workers into Island of Doctor Moreau-esque horse people.
The Apartment (Paramount+)
Directed by the legendary Billy Wilder, The Apartment features Jack Lemmon as a sad-sack insurance clerk who lets his married boss use his bachelor pad to hook up with women that definitely aren’t his wife — one of whom happens to be the charming elevator operator Lemmon’s character has his eye on, played by Shirley MacLaine. Simply one of the finest movies of all time.
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