What’s Your Favorite Funny Movie?- 10 Best Horror Comedies
Carol Burnett once said that “comedy is tragedy, plus time.” So the sum of parts for Horror/Comedy movies must be “tragedy, plus time, plus more tragedy.” When done right, Horror and Comedy go together like peanut butter and chocolate- they’re great on their own, but together…together, they’re something special. Unfortunately, Horror/Comedies all too often fail to meet the mark and we’re left with any number of Scary Movie sequels or A Haunted House. Every once in a while, though, a film comes along that both terrifies us and makes milk come out of our nose. Whether these films feature lovable, laughable screw-ups, offer new takes on cliché tropes or provide outright satire, some of the best horror movies also happen to be comedies.
10) Zombieland (2009)
The creators of Zombieland didn’t “do it first,” but they certainly did it well. Much like another entry on our list, Zombieland subverted its own genre and turned it on its head. It featured, truly, a career-changing performance from Woody Harrelson. It also thrust Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin into the spotlight. The one moment that really made this film, however, was the cameo from Bill Murray. It was, perhaps, the greatest movie scene in any zombie movie ever. That isn’t to take away from the rest of the film though. Everybody involved gives and fantastic performance and this is one of the few films that didn’t leave us wanting to punch Eisenberg’s character in the face.
9) Demon Knight (1995)
What happens when you combine Tales from the Crypt with a feature-length runtime and Billy Zane? The answer is Demon Knight, the first of a supposed ‘trilogy’ of TFTC movies and, really, the only one that was actually any good. Demon Knight features Zane as an entity known simply as “The Collector,” as he hunts down William Sadler’s Brekker. Brekker has been tasked by God himself to deliver a key filled with the blood of Christ to the titular Demon Knight. Zane, in his best performance outside of Titanic and Zoolander, steals the show as the wise-cracking, demon-summoning, seductive Collector. The audience knows Zane is a bad guy, but he’s just so damn charismatic, we can’t help but ourselves becoming seduced by his antics. The cast of the film also includes Thomas Hayden Church, Jada Pinkett Smith and a host of other actors with three names. It is Zane that steals the show, however. Sadler is no slouch either but in the battle of the Bills, it is Zane who comes out on top.
8) Scary Movie (2000)
Coming out at the height of Scream’s popularity, the original Scary Movie was surprisingly funny and inventive. The same cannot be said of its sequels, save possibly Scary Movie 2. The original Scary Movie, though, was funny, irreverent, outrageous and totally true. Take the satirical look at horror movies first tackled in Scream, and turning it up to 11, Scary Movie was an innovator. Featuring the always-hilarious Anna Farris, as well as the Wayans Brothers and a host of others, Scary Movie parodied almost all of the “scary movies” that were relevant at the time. Films like Scream, I Know What You Did Last Summer and more were put “on blast,” and no prisoners were taken.
7) Cabin in the Woods (2011)
It’s a story audiences have seen 1000 times before… or so they thought. Cabin in the Woods was never supposed to be a straight-up horror movie. If anything, Cabin in the Woods could be classified as a really, really dark comedy. It tells the story of five teenagers who unknowingly find themselves to be parts of an ancient sacrifice, performed to please world-destroying gods. Said sacrifices are usually instances that horror movies are made of, like demon ghost children, pinhead-type mercenaries and, in the case of our heroes, a zombie redneck family. What first starts out as a typical movie about, well, a cabin in the woods, soon turns into a meta-experience for the characters, as well as for the audience. Joss Whedon wrote the script for the movie, so you know it’s smart. With Drew Goddard directing, Cabin in the Woods became an instant hit, and it’s one of the greatest Horror/Comedies of all time.
6) Tucker & Dale Vs Evil (2010)
You’ve gotta feel for poor Tucker and Dale. They just wanted to move into their dream home and totally, absolutely not murder anybody. Unfortunately, a group of attractive teenagers believes that the two are “typical murderous Rednecks,” and the universe (or maybe it’s the gods from Cabin in the Woods?) pits Tucker and Dale against said group of teens in a hilarious but tragic comedy of errors. Our friends, Tucker and Dale, continue to find themselves in situations that portray them as killers. They are not. They just have really, really bad luck. And the group of teenagers that are being accidentally murdered are so self- involved, they’re not able to use common sense and logic when it comes to their interactions with Tuck and Dale. We don’t want to victim blame or anything, but it’s totally their fault that they keep dying.
5) Stitches (2012)
When you make a horror-cum-comedy film, you have to walk a pretty thin line. You don’t want to be overly scary, so as to overshadow the comedy and vice-versa. Very few films get this right. Demon Knight and Cabin in the Woods are two prime examples of how to do it right. Stitches, a 2012 British film starring comedian Ross Noble is another example of how to do it right. While we subscribe to the idea that clowns just simply aren’t funny, Ross Noble’s performance as Stitches comes damn close. Whether it’s turning somebody’s intestines into a balloon animal or making sweet, sweet love to a woman while she yells out “f*ck me clown, f*ck me clown!” Stitches had us in stitches throughout the entire movie. But don’t let the humor fool you; Stitches is still damn creepy. There are some genuinely scary scenes in this movie, especially if you’re a coulrophobe.
4) Army of Darkness (1993)
While the original Evil Dead is the scariest film in the series, Army of Darkness (or, Medieval Dead, as it was once called) is probably the funniest/most action-packed. At the end of Evil Dead 2, Ash is sucked through a vortex and transported via time-continuum to the medieval period. While there, Ash is first thought to be a witch and he is held captive. After surviving what was sure to be a death sentence, Ash proves himself to be quite the leader and is quickly believed to be “the chosen one,” spoken of in the Necronomicon, to free the people from the evilest of the dead. Always the reluctant hero, Ash is more concerned about getting home than in being a savior. Still, he straps on his Boomstick and his chainsaw and prepares to take on an entire Army of Darkness, led by his evil doppelgänger. Army of Darkness amps up the humor that first appeared in Evil Dead 2. This isn’t a bad thing, per se, but it does lose some of its scare-factor. Deadites are simply scarier than a bunch of “mini-Ashes.” Still, Army of Darkness is an incredibly entertaining film and it firmly establishes Ash as the hero we all know him to be.
3) What We Do in the Shadows (2014)
Who said vampire movies can’t be hilarious? Much like Shaun of the Dead did to the zombie genre, What We Do in the Shadows took every convention we held for a vampire flick and turned it on its side. The results were hilarious. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as the film came from Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi, as well as Flight of the Conchords front man, Jemaine Clement. Yes, this was a New Zealandish movie, but that just added to its overall charm. Previously, vampire films only focused on what the dead did at night. But never has there been a movie that shows vampires getting groceries, or going to the club. What We Do in the Shadows did that, to hilarious results. What We Do in the Shadows is a found footage film, in a mockumentary style, but that, too, adds to its charm. This movie is funny, that’s all. Vampires might be scary, but they’re also pretty hilarious. Luckily, we haven’t seen the last of this take on vampires, as FX has ordered a 10-episode series. What we’ll be doing in the shadows is laughing our heads off.
2) Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Speaking of Shaun of the Dead…We’re not sure if Edgar Wright wanted more of a Horror or Comedy film; he probably just wanted to make a really good movie. That’s exactly what he did with Shaun of the Dead — a genre film that flips said genre on its head and beats it to death with a cricket racquet. As the title suggests, this film is about Shaun, a hapless 30-something with a pretty uneventful existence. He has a mom he rarely sees, a girlfriend he rarely romances and a best friend he rarely, well, actually he hangs out with his best friend quite a bit. Shaun, it seems, is content to live in mediocrity. Then, the zombie apocalypse happens and it’s up to Shaun to save the people he cares most about. It’s time for Shaun to finally step up, stop being selfish and fight for the people he loves.
When Shaun of the Dead first debuted in 2004, we didn’t quite know what to make of it at first. Horror/Comedies were nothing new, but this film took that genre to a whole different level. It had a rapid pace, with quick cuts, biting dialogue and throwaway gags we’re pretty sure we still haven’t caught all of. Shaun of the Dead is the slacker’s manifesto, it seems. But, like all of Edgar Wright’s films, underneath the jokes and murderous neighbors, there’s a coming-of-age story. Many of us don’t get our lives in order until our 30’s. Shaun had to do that whilst fighting a horde of the undead. This film, like the ones it pays homage to, has become a classic.
1) Ghostbusters (1984)
What can be said about the seminal classic film Ghostbusters that hasn’t already been said? Is it a perfect movie? No, but it’s pretty close. What Ivan Reitman, Harold Ramis, Bill Murray, Ernie Hudson, and Dan Aykroyd created (along with a host of talents on the other side of the camera was the epitome of a blockbuster. It was funny, scary, well written and well-paced. Ghostbusters featured incredible performances that utilized unbelievable special effects to great success. In short, Ghostbusters is everything that a horror comedy film should be. It gives us characters to root for, it’s scary when it needs to be, and it makes us laugh more often than not. Ghostbusters is not the first horror comedy film but it is the best. If you don’t believe us, we will send Slimer to your house to prove it.
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