March 25th, 2021 | Updated on December 3rd, 2021
We don’t know what makes a comedy classic. There could more than one reason for making a comedy movie truly great. We don’t know the answer yet. This list has included all forms of essential Comedy Action Movies that you should watch in 2021.
1. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017)
In a brand-new Jumanji adventure, four high-school kids discover an old video-game console and are drawn into the game’s jungle setting, literally becoming the adult avatars they chose.
What they discover is that you don’t just play Jumanji–you must survive it. To beat the game and return to the real world, they must go on the most dangerous adventure of their lives, discover what Alan Parrish left 20 years ago, and change the way they think about themselves –or they’ll be stuck in the game forever, to be played by others without break.
Review: The Guardian
Considering the chequered past of game-world movies (from the Gerard Butler clunker Gamer to the Adam Sandler stinker Pixels and worse), plaudits are due to Kasdan for keeping things sprightly.
Potentially clunky riffs about non-player characters, such as Rhys Darby’s expository Nigel (“return the jewel and lift the curse”), are deftly handled, while a recurrent joke about Franklin’s explosive weakness for cake raises more chuckles than expected.
2. Big Momma’s House (2000)
FBI agent Malcolm Turner is known best for being a brilliant, master of disguise. Malcolm’s latest assignment sends him to small-town Georgia, where he’s assigned to trap a brutal bank robber (and a recent prison escapee) who they suspect will be coming down to visit his ex-girlfriend Sherry and her son.
Malcolm sets up a stakeout across from the home of a larger-than-life southern matriarch known as Big Momma, who’s about to be visited by Sherry.
It’s a simple plan, but there’s one big problem: Unbeknownst to Sherry, Big Momma has unexpectedly left town.
So Malcolm, decides to impersonate the cantankerous Southern granny. Using a few tricks of disguise, he completely transforms himself into Big Momma, even taking on the corpulent septuagenarian’s everyday routine-from cooking soul food to delivering babies to “testifying” at the local church.
In the mean time, Malcolm starts falling for Sherry, who may or may not be hiding some stolen cash.
Review: India Today
But what could have been a not-so-bad children’s film is quite the opposite, what with jokes about a “flashlight” in Big Momma’s bed when Sherry climbs in on a scary, stormy night; the camera zooming in, between a pregnant woman’s legs while she’s in labour; and more. There are better ways to teach the little ones the facts of life.
3. Beverly Hills Cop (1984)
After the murder of his childhood friend in front of his eyes, the slick Detroit detective, Axel Foley, heads to sunny Beverly Hills, on a one-man mission to ferret out the killer and bring him to justice.
Before long, Axel and his unorthodox methods unearth the lucrative drug operation of the powerful local crime kingpin, Victor Maitland; however, Foley, too, will find himself in deep trouble, as Lieutenant Andrew Bogomil wants him out of town.
Now, Axel will have to team up with Detectives, John Taggart, and Billy Rosewood, to shed light on the thick conspiracy, and finish what he has started. Will Foley’s total disregard for proper procedure bear fruit?
Brest’s smartest move was the casting of Murphy; everyone from Al Pacino to Sylvester Stallone had been circling the project, ready to play it dead straight.
Once, Murphy’s ripe smile and easy tread were injected into what was a well oiled but standard policier, everything changed.
The plot, involving Steven Berkoff’s pay-the-rent baddie’s drug ring, falls to the background, a sturdy framework for the star’s ribald energy.
4. Men in Black (1997)
Based off of the comic book. Unbeknownst to other people, there is a private agency code named MiB. This agency is some kind of extra terrestrial surveillance corporation.
Then, one of the agency’s finest men only going by the name “K” (Tommy Lee Jones) , is recruiting for a new addition to the agency.
He has chosen James Edwards (Will Smith) of the N.Y.P.D. Then, one day, a flying saucer crashes into Earth. This was an alien a part of the “Bug” race.
He takes the body of a farmer (Vincent D’Onofrio) and heads to New York. He is searching for a super energy source called “The Galaxy”. Now, Agents J and K must stop the bug before it can escape with the galaxy.
Review: Hollywood Reporter
Relatively restrained, Linda Fiorentino as a medical examiner whose memories of numerous visits from the MIB have been routinely zapped joins the madcap race to squash D’Onofrio’s character, while Rip Torn plays the head of the agency with gruffness to spare.
Other standout performers are Tony Shalhoub (Big Night) as a hapless (and briefly headless) pawnshop owner and Siobhan Fallon as the farmer’s tabloid-fodder wife.
5. The Heat (2013)
Sarah Ashburn, an FBI agent, is extremely ambitious and has her eye on a promotion, but she doesn’t get along with her co-workers.
She is sent to Boston to uncover the identity of an elusive drug lord, Mr. Larkin, by tracking down his proxy, Rojas, and is told that she’ll have a good shot at the promotion if she finds Larkin.
When she arrives in Boston, she learns that Larkin has been eliminating his competition and taking over their operations.
She learns that Rojas is in Boston PD custody and goes to see him to ask him what he knows about Larkin, but is warned that the cop who arrested Rojas, Shannon Mullins, is very territorial, and she is not exactly sociable.
When the two meet they don’t get along. When Mullins learns why Ashburn is in Boston, she decides to find Larkin herself. Ashburn is told by her boss to work with Mullins, but it won’t be easy because Ashburn does things by the book while Mullins does things her way.
Review: The Guardian
It’s one of those rare comedies you exit actively looking forward to the sequel. Katie Dippold’s screenplay drips with zingers, and it’s bespoke tailored to the leads:
Sandra Bullock, game as ever as an uptight workaholic FBI whiz; McCarthy astonishingly aggressive as a Boston ball-breaker keeping the streets clean by wiping the floor with her enemies.
6. Get Smart (2006)
American Maxwell Smart works for a Government spy agency in an administrative capacity.
When the agency’s head office is attacked, the Chief decides to assign Maxwell as a spy and partners him with sexy Agent 99, much to her chagrin.
The duo nevertheless set off to combat their attackers by first parachuting off an airplane and landing in Russian territory – followed closely by an over seven feet tall, 400 pound goon, known simply as Dalip.
The duo, handicapped by Maxwell’s antics, will eventually have their identities compromised, and may be chalked up as casualties, while back in America their attackers have already planted a bomb that is set-up to explode in a concert.
Despite a plot that should be simpler, Get Smart is as big on action as it is on laughs and works because it is less a tired spoof and more a quality comedic adventure movie in its own right.
7. Johnny English (2003)
When a funeral of a British spy is attacked, all of the remaining spies are killed. Only one spy is left and is now Britain’s last hope.
Johnny English and his sidekick, Bough have been assigned the case of investigating the theft of the British Crown Jewels.
The prime suspect is a mysterious French entrepreneur, known as Pascal Sauvage. English and Bough soon find out the horrifying truth behind the theft and Sauvage, but it’s not going to be an easy job to bring him to justice.
Review: The Guardian
No genre has been more exhaustively spoofed than 007, and the Bond films themselves have long inoculated themselves with microbes of pre-emptive parody.
8. Ride Along (2014)
Ben must prove he is good enough to date cop James’ sister. By doing this he goes on a “Ride Along” to show that he is not weak and he will do whatever it takes to get James’ approval but along the way runs into a few obstacles that he has to overcome in a very funny way.
While the film has been a big hit in the States, box-office success is not always an indicator of a memorable or classic comedy.
9. Rush Hour (1988)
Cultures clash and tempers flares as the two cops named Detective Inspector Lee a Hong Kong Detective and Detective James Carter FBI, a big-mouthed work-alone Los Angeles cop who are from different worlds discovers one thing in common: they can’t stand each other.
With time running out, they must join forces to catch the criminals and save the eleven-year-old Chinese girl of the Chinese consul named Soo Yung.
Review: Washington Post
“Rush Hour,” starring the undynamic duo of Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker, is a misbegotten marriage of sweet and sour.
10. Spy (2015)
Susan Cooper is an unassuming, deskbound CIA analyst, and the unsung hero behind the Agency’s most dangerous missions.
But when her partner falls off the grid and another top agent is compromised, she volunteers to go deep undercover to infiltrate the world of a deadly arms dealer, and prevent a global crisis.
Review: Rotten Tomatoes
Not only does this movie foreground a woman busting out of her assigned role and kicking ass, it also highlights an awesome female friendship which steals the show.
11. Kick-Ass (2010)
Dave Lizewski is an unnoticed high school student and comic book fan with a few friends and who lives alone with his father.
His life is not very difficult and his personal trials not that overwhelming. However, one day he makes the simple decision to become a super-hero even though he has no powers or training.
Movie Review: Collider
Cage may be the biggest name actor in the film, but he makes a delightful turn in an important supporting role that helps bolster the world while helping to ground Hit-Girl as a real character who isn’t a disturbed individual despite her disturbing actions as a murderous vigilante.
12. Hot Pursuit (2015)
Rose Cooper is an uptight and by-the-book cop whose name has become synonymous with screw-ups.
She’s given a chance to redeem herself one day when she is assigned to protect a federal witness, Daniella Riva, the vivacious and outgoing widow of a drug boss.
As the two polar opposites race through Texas, they find themselves pursued by everyone from crooked cops to murderous gunmen.
However, their greatest obstacle to making this out alive may be themselves as they learn that Cooper has now been considered a fugitive fleeing with Daniella.
13. The Interview (2014)
In the action-comedy The Interview, Dave Skylark (James Franco) and his producer Aaron Rapoport (Seth Rogen) run the popular celebrity tabloid TV show “Skylark Tonight.”
When they discover that North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un is a fan of the show, they land an interview with him in an attempt to legitimize themselves as journalists.
As Dave and Aaron prepare to travel to Pyongyang, their plans change when the CIA recruits them, perhaps the two least-qualified men imaginable, to assassinate Kim Jong-un.
Movie Review: Sandiego Reader
The Interview offers more laughs (four, to be exact) than all of Rogen and Goldberg’s previous pairings combined.
And if nothing else, the film’s haphazard booking pattern helped to draw much-needed attention to our own little theater that could, the Digital Gym. Here’s hoping that in the future, Amy Pascal returns their calls.
14. Tropic Thunder (2008)
Action movie star Tugg Speedman is on the downslide of his professional career. He wants to be considered a serious actor, but his latest serious role as the title character in “Simple Jack” resulted in negative reviews and ridicule.
Comedian Jeff Portnoy is best known for his leading roles in sophomoric comedies, and may be less well known for his rampant drug use.
Five time Oscar winner Kirk Lazarus is a serious method actor, who immerses himself in whatever the role.
On location in southeast Vietnam, they are the stars of “Tropic Thunder”, based on Vietnam war veteran ‘Four Leaf’ Tayback’s memoirs of his rescue during the war, that rescue which was considered a near suicide mission for the assigned army force and resulted in him losing both hands.
For his role, Caucasian Australian Lazarus even went through a controversial surgical skin dying procedure so that he could convincingly play a black man.
Movie Review: Empire
There are moments of comedy grandeur, but this isn’t as consistently funny as you would hope. Nevertheless, Downey Jr.’s Kirk Lazarus is instantly up there with the comedy greats
15.Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 (2015)
After six years of keeping our malls safe, Paul Blart has earned a well-deserved vacation. He heads to Vegas with his teenage daughter before she heads off to college. But safety never takes a holiday and when duty calls, Blart answers.
Movie Review: Roger Ebert
In the proud tradition of so many recent Happy Madison productions—“Just Go With It” (Hawaii), “Jack and Jill” (cruise ship) “Blended” (Africa)—“Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2” is a vacation disguised as a movie shoot.
It’s also an extended infomercial for the Wynn Las Vegas hotel and resort. (Steve Wynn himself makes an awkward, wordless cameo at the conclusion.)