The Best Comedy Movies to Watch on HBO Max If You Need a Laugh


Hey! You! Stop flipping through the channels and endlessly scrolling your various streaming platforms. It’s time to just pick a movie and watch it. And, if you’re an HBO Max subscriber, there are a bunch of comedy movies to choose from. You know, in case there’s any reason that you could use a laugh right now. Just any little old global reason that you could use a fun movie at this time.

From comedies with ridiculously wealthy people and rom-coms set in olden times, to zombies, strippers, and Pokémonnot all at once, thank goodness—you’ll find the perfect comedy for your movie night below.

If you’re not an HBO Max subscriber, you can fix that right here:

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Crazy Rich Asians

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If you somehow missed the Crazy Rich Asians craze when the movie adaptation came out in 2018, this rom-com is about a woman, Rachel (Constance Wu), who finds out her boyfriend, Nick (Henry Golding) is from a super wealthy family when she travels to meet them in Singapore.

Elf

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It might not be Christmastime anymore, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still watch Christmas movies, especially when they’re as funny as Elf. The movie stars Will Ferrell as a human who was raised by elves on the North Pole, as he tries to reconnect with his biological father in New York City.

Emma

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If you like period pieces just as much as you like comedies, check out one of the adaptations of Jane Austen’s Emma. Both the 1996 version starring Gwyneth Paltrow and the 2020 film starring Anya Taylor-Joy are streaming on HBO Max. (Fun fact: Emma is also the book that Clueless was based on.)

Hairspray

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Hairspray (the 2007 version) is adapted from the Broadway musical of the same name, which itself is adapted from the 1988 movie. The ensemble cast in this film about a teenage girl in 1960s Baltimore includes Nikki Blonsky, Zac Efron, Amanda Bynes, John Travolta, Michelle Pfeiffer, Brittany Snow, and more.

High Fidelity

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This romantic-dramedy stars John Cusack as a record store owner with relationship problems. Throughout the movie, he tries to figure out his issues and win back his girlfriend, Laura (Iben Hjejle).

Jojo Rabbit

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Taika Waititi’s comedy about a young German boy, Jojo (Roman Griffin Davis), who has Hitler (Waititi) as an imaginary friend isn’t for everyone. But the movie has a lot of heart, especially as Jojo develops a friendship with the Jewish girl (Thomasin McKenzie) his mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding in their home during World War II.

Magic Mike

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Magic Mike is a comedy-drama about strippers that’s also about a man (Channing Tatum) who wants to start a furniture business, a drug deal gone wrong, and a potential romance. It’s more serious than you might expect—especially if you’ve only seen the lighter, more over-the-top sequel, Magic Mike XXL.

My Big Fat Greek Wedding

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My Big Fat Greek Wedding was a massive hit when it came out in 2002, and you can now relive it—or watch for the first time—on HBO Max. It follows a Greek-American woman, Toula (Nia Vardalos), who gets engaged to a non-Greek man (John Corbett) and has to deal with planning her wedding to him with her many opinionated family members.

Ocean’s Eleven (and Twelve and Thirteen and more)

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If you’re in the mood for a heist movie, the whole Ocean’s Eleven franchise is waiting for you. There’s Ocean’s Eleven, Ocean’s Twelve, and Ocean’s Thirteen, which include George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Julia Roberts among their ensemble casts. There’s also Ocean’s 8, the all-women spinoff that stars Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Rihanna, and five more very famous faces. Plus, HBO Max also has the original Rat Pack Ocean’s 11 from 1960.

The Philadelphia Story

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The Philadelphia Story is a classic rom-com from 1940 about a wealthy woman (Katharine Hepburn) who is engaged to be married, but in a short span of time strikes up a flirtation with both a journalist (James Stewart) sent to cover her wedding and her ex-husband (Cary Grant). Who will she choose?

Pokémon Detective Pikachu

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It’s a kinda live-action, and kinda animated, but this mystery movie is about a young man (Justice Smith) trying to find his father with a talking Pikachu, voiced by Ryan Reynolds. Yes, that sounds like a lot, but you won’t regret giving this movie a chance.

School of Rock

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In School of Rock, Jack Black plays a man who sneaks his way into becoming a substitute teacher for the money and ends up forming a band with his students. The private school kids learn to loosen up. He learns about responsibility.

Shaun of the Dead

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It’s a comedy about a zombie apocalypse—that’s really all there is to it. But just because it’s full of jokes that doesn’t mean it’s any less gory.

Singin’ in the Rain

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Singin’ in the Rain is one of the most beloved musicals of all time, and it’s really funny, too. Especially thanks to Lina Lamont (Jean Hagen) and her high-pitched voice that is deemed unacceptable for the “talkies.”

This Is Spinal Tap

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Mockumentaries your thing? Then you’ll love—or already love—This Is Spinal Tap. It’s about a fake English metal band called Spinal Tap that run into all sorts of problems as they go on tour around the U.S. The speakers go up to 11!

When Harry Met Sally

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When it comes to romantic comedies, When Harry Met Sally is one of the movies that sets the standard. Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal star as friends who have a “will they or won’t they” relationship spanning a decade.

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