Critics Vote The 100 Greatest Comedies

Top film lists by critics often get chided for their focus on serious dramas and challenging material by those who just go to the movies to be entertained. The lack of inclusion of comedies on many Top 10 lists is often the most cited example of this.

So, BBC Culture has posed a question to 253 film critics to come up with their choices for the 100 greatest comedies of all time. 118 women and 135 men from 52 countries and all from reputable outlets participated in the survey which asked for the ten best comedies of all time. The results were then tabulated to result in this combined list.

The poll comes exactly one year after BBC Culture published a poll assembled in the same way which lead to a ‘The 100 greatest films of the 21st Century’ list which was topped by “Mulholland Drive”. This year’s list is topped by Billy Wilder’s legendary cross dressing comedy “Some Like it Hot” starring Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon.

The list runs the gamut and includes two films each from the Coen brothers, Edgar Wright, Jerry Lewis, Christopher Guest, Terry Jones & Harold Ramis; three each from the Zucker brothers, John Landis, Mel Brooks, Woody Allen, Adam McKay, Rob Reiner, Buster Keaton & Howard Hawks; and four each from Ernst Lubitsch and Charlie Chaplin. Check out the full list below:

1. “Some Like It Hot” (Billy Wilder, 1959)
2. “Dr. Strangelove” (Stanley Kubrick, 1964)
3. “Annie Hall” (Woody Allen, 1977)
4. “Groundhog Day” (Harold Ramis, 1993)
5. “Duck Soup” (Leo McCarey, 1933)
6. “Life of Brian” (Terry Jones, 1979)
7. “Airplane!” (Jim Abrahams, David & Jerry Zucker, 1980)
8. “Playtime” (Jacques Tati, 1967)
9. “This Is Spinal Tap” (Rob Reiner, 1984)
10. “The General” (Clyde Bruckman and Buster Keaton, 1926)
11. “The Big Lebowski” (Joel and Ethan Coen, 1998)
12. “Modern Times” (Charlie Chaplin, 1936)
13. “To Be or Not To Be” (Ernst Lubitsch, 1942)
14. “His Girl Friday” (Howard Hawks, 1940)
15. “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” (Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, 1975)
16. “The Great Dictator” (Charlie Chaplin, 1940)
17. “Bringing Up Baby” (Howard Hawks, 1938)
18. “Sherlock Jr” (Buster Keaton, 1924)
19. “The Lady Eve” (Preston Sturges, 1941)
20. “Blazing Saddles” (Mel Brooks, 1974)
21. “City Lights” (Charlie Chaplin, 1931)
22. “Young Frankenstein” (Mel Brooks, 1974)
23. “The Party” (Blake Edwards, 1968)
24. “Withnail and I” (Bruce Robinson, 1987)
25. “The Gold Rush”” (Charlie Chaplin, 1925)
26. “Mon Oncle” (Jacques Tati, 1958)
27. “The Apartment” (Billy Wilder, 1960)
28. “It Happened One Night” (Frank Capra, 1934)
29. “When Harry Met Sally…” (Rob Reiner, 1989)
30. “Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday” (Jacques Tati, 1953)
31. “Tootsie” (Sydney Pollack, 1982)
32. “Raising Arizona” (Joel and Ethan Coen, 1987)
33. “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy” (Adam McKay, 2004)
34. “Clueless” (Amy Heckerling, 1995)
35. “Singin’ in the Rain” (Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly, 1952)
36. “A Fish Called Wanda” (Charles Crichton, John Cleese, 1988)
37. “Sullivan’s Travels” (Preston Sturges, 1941)
38. “The Philadelphia Story” (George Cukor, 1940)
39. “A Night at the Opera” (Sam Wood, Edmund Goulding, 1935)
40. “The Producers” (Mel Brooks, 1967)
41. “Borat: Cultural Learnings … ” (Larry Charles, 2006)
42. “The Awful Truth” (Leo McCarey, 1937)
43. “M*A*S*H” (Robert Altman, 1970)
44. “Bridesmaids” (Paul Feig, 2011)
45. “Big Deal on Madonna Street” (Mario Monicelli, 1958)
46. “Pulp Fiction” (Quentin Tarantino, 1994)
47. “Animal House” (John Landis, 1978)
48. “Trouble in Paradise” (Ernst Lubitsch, 1932)
49. “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie” (Luis Bunuel, 1972)
50. “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown” (Pedro Almodovar, 1988)
51. “Seven Chances” (Buster Keaton, 1925)
52. “My Man Godfrey” (Gregory La Cava, 1936)
53. “The Blues Brothers” (John Landis, 1980)
54. “Harold and Maude” (Hal Ashby, 1971)
55. “Best in Show” (Christopher Guest, 2000)
56. “Broadcast News” (James L Brooks, 1987)
57. “Mean Girls” (Mark Waters, 2004)
58. “Zelig” (Woody Allen, 1983)
59. “Toni Erdmann” (Maren Ade, 2016)
60. “Shaun of the Dead” (Edgar Wright, 2004)
61. “Team America: World Police” (Trey Parker, 2004)
62. “What We Do in the Shadows” (Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi, 2014)
63. “Arsenic and Old Lace” (Frank Capra, 1944)
64. “Step Brothers” (Adam McKay, 2008)
65. “Caddyshack” (Harold Ramis, 1980)
66. “Hot Fuzz” (Edgar Wright, 2007)
67. “Sons of the Desert” (William A Seiter, 1933)
68. “Ninotchka” (Ernst Lubitsch, 1939)
69. “Love and Death” (Woody Allen, 1975)
70. “In the Loop” (Armando Iannucci, 2009)
71. “The Royal Tenenbaums” (Wes Anderson, 2001)
72. “The Naked Gun” (David Zucker, 1988)
73. “The Nutty Professor” (Jerry Lewis, 1963)
74. “Trading Places” (John Landis, 1983)
75. “The Palm Beach Story” (Preston Sturges, 1942)
76. “Design for Living” (Ernst Lubitsch, 1933)
77. “Divorce Italian Style” (Pietro Germi, 1961)
78. “The Princess Bride” (Rob Reiner, 1987)
79. “The Dinner Game” (Francis Veber, 1998)
80. “Office Space” (Mike Judge, 1999)
81. “There’s Something About Mary” (Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly, 1998)
82. “Top Secret!” (Jim Abrahams, David & Jerry Zucker, 1984)
83. “Safety Last!” (Fred C Newmeyer and Sam Taylor, 1923)
84. “Waiting for Guffman” (Christopher Guest, 1996)
85. “Amarcord” (Federico Fellini, 1973)
86. “Kind Hearts and Coronets” (Robert Hamer, 1949)
87. “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” (Howard Hawks, 1953)
88. “Zoolander” (Ben Stiller, 2001)
89. “Daisies” (Vera Chytilová, 1966)
90. “A New Leaf” (Elaine May, 1971)
91. “What’s Up, Doc?” (Peter Bogdanovich, 1972)
92. “The Exterminating Angel” (Luis Buñuel, 1962)
93. “South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut” (Trey Parker, 1999)
94. “Rushmore” (Wes Anderson, 1998)
95. “Ghostbusters” (Ivan Reitman, 1984)
96. “Born Yesterday” (George Cukor, 1950)
97. “The Music Box” (James Parrott, 1932)
98. “The Hangover” (Todd Phillips, 2009)
99. “The Jerk” (Carl Reiner, 1979)
100. “(tie) The King of Comedy” (Martin Scorsese, 1982)
100. “(tie) The Ladies Man” (Jerry Lewis, 1961)

Source: The BBC