Creating timeless comedies is a truly remarkable accomplishment for filmmakers. It’s no secret that all movie genres have the potential to age poorly, but comedy, especially, has an expiration date due to its contextual and individualistic nature. What’s funny today might not make sense in the future, and what tickles some people may leave others cold. 

Related: 10 Best Movies of All Time, Ranked by Viewers

When it comes to picking the best comedy movies of all time, durability must be taken into account. How well does this film hold up now? Will it still be hilarious years from now?

After intense research, we’ve found the ten highest-rated comedy films that represent laugh-out-loud hilarity and will stand the test of time. We can’t guarantee these will elicit uproarious laughter from everyone – then again, if they don’t…maybe you should take a step back and reassess your comedic sensibilities – or at least vote for your favorite comedy on IMDb.

10 Highest-Rated Comedies on IMDb

  • Annie Hall (1977) – 8.0
  • It Happened One Night (1934) – 8.1
  • Groundhog Day (1993) – 8.1
  • The Big Lebowski (1998) – 8.1
  • The General (1926) – 8.2
  • The Gold Rush (1925) – 8.2
  • Some Like It Hot (1959) – 8.2
  • Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) – 8.2
  • Toy Story (1995) – 8.3
  • The Great Dictator (1940) – 8.4

10 ‘Annie Hall’ (1977)

Annie Hall (1977)

Director: Woody Allen
Stars: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Tony Roberts

IMDb: 8.0/10 269K | Popularity: 2,824 | Metascore: 92

‘Annie Hall’ is a must-watch, with Woody Allen at his best – clever and humorous yet painfully aware of how life can be unfair. It’s one of the most iconic romantic comedies, full of classic quotes like “Don’t knock masturbation. It’s sex with someone I love.”

The movie follows Alvy Singer (Allen) after he splits from singer Annie (Diane Keaton). Although Allen has said that the film isn’t based on his own experience, we can still feel elements of it as they unfold in this story. A timeless classic not to be missed.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

9 ‘It Happened One Night’ (1934)

It Happened One Night (1934)

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert, Walter Connolly

IMDb: 8.1/10 106K | Popularity: 2,963 | Metascore: 87 | Top 250: #243

This classic 1934 screwball comedy starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert is widely considered to be the first-ever romantic comedy. In it, a newspaper writer stumbles upon an heiress running away from her wealthy father to marry a fortune hunter.

This movie set the standard for many rom-coms that followed with its mix of bickering dialogue and characters who can’t stand each other but end up falling head over heels in love. It’s truly irresistible.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

8 ‘Groundhog Day’ (1993)

Groundhog Day (1993)

Director: Harold Ramis
Stars: Billy Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliott

IMDb: 8.1/10 645K | Popularity: 1,226 | Metascore: 72 | Top 250: #225

It’s been decades since the great Bill Murray charmed audiences in the classic comedy “Groundhog Day.” While it has its share of uproarious humor, what continues to make the movie stand out is its relatable narrative. It even landed toward the top of our list of the highest-rated rom-coms of all time.

At a deeper level, it speaks to how life often feels like “Groundhog Day” – full of mundane repetition and seemingly never-ending cycles. But ultimately, we can still find solace in showing kindness and love toward others.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

7 ‘The Big Lebowski’ (1998)

The Big Lebowski (1998)

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Stars: Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Julianne Moore

IMDb: 8.1/10 821K | Popularity: 381 | Metascore: 71 | Top 250: #207

Jeff “The Dude” Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) is the ultimate Los Angeles slacker. When debt collectors confuse him for a millionaire of the same name, he goes on an adventure with his bowling buddies (John Goodman) to seek restitution for a rug they ruined.

Related: 10 Best Jeff Bridges Movies, Ranked by Viewers

Along the way, they meet characters like Walter John and Julianne Moore, that help teach “The Dude” lessons about friendship and courage. With its clever one-liners and unique plotline, this Coen Brothers’ comedy has already become an iconic classic in film history.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

6 ‘The General’ (1926)

The General (1926)

Directors: Clyde Bruckman, Buster Keaton
Stars: Buster Keaton, Marion Mack, Glen Cavender

IMDb: 8.1/10 93K | Top 250: #188

Buster Keaton‘s classic Civil War movie “The General” is a true marvel to behold. Ignoring health and safety protocols of the time, he performs incredible stunts in pursuit of his beloved locomotive after Union spies seized it.

From ducking cannon fire to launching railroad ties and even sending an entire train off a bridge, these are perhaps some of the most daring sight gags ever performed. It serves as the template for countless chase movies, even including Bugs Bunny cartoons.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

5 ‘The Gold Rush’ (1925)

The Gold Rush (1925)

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mack Swain, Tom Murray

IMDb: 8.1/10 113K | Top 250: #178

Charlie Chaplin‘s iconic little tramp takes on the Alaskan gold rush in this timeless, silent feature. His surreal yet humorous adventures make for a truly memorable viewing experience – watch him struggle to survive by eating his own boots. But there is also a sweet side to the story, as our hero develops feelings of love and admiration for a showgirl he meets at a dance hall.

This classic film will surely tug at your heartstrings and leave you laughing with its clever mix of comedy, romance, and adventure. Check out the original silent version rather than any sound reissue – it’ll be worth every minute.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

4 ‘Monty Python and the Holy Grail’ (1975)

Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

Directors: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones
Stars: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle

IMDb: 8.2/10 548K | Popularity: 1,713 | Metascore: 91 | Top 250: #148

King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table embark on an epic quest for the Holy Grail, encountering many obstacles that are both hilarious and absurd. In this Monty Python classic, we follow the knights traveling across 10th-century England to gather allies for Camelot. Along their journey, God sends them on a mission to find the Grail, and they must face a wizard named Tim the Enchanter, killer rabbits, holy hand grenades, and more wacky challenges. Ultimately their quest is interrupted by none other than the police – only in a Monty Python movie.

This film was made possible thanks to Reg Llama of Brixton and thousands of his llama friends, along with contributions from Terry Gilliam and Terry Jones. Neil Innes‘s music, coupled with Graham Chapman‘s straight performance as King Arthur, make this movie an iconic piece of British absurdity that still entertains today.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

3 ‘Some Like It Hot’ (1959)

Some Like It Hot (1959)

Director: Billy Wilder
Stars: Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon

IMDb: 8.2/10 271K | Popularity: 1,191 | Metascore: 98 | Top 250: #129

Two Chicago musicians, Joe and Jerry, witness the St. Valentine’s Day massacre and are desperate to get out of town before they become targets of gangster Spats Colombo. With no other option, they dress up in drag as Josephine and Daphne – saxophone and bass players for an all-girl band headed to Florida.

On their journey, Joe falls for the sultry band singer Sugar Kane Kowalczyk (Marilyn Monroe), while Jerry is pursued by a wealthy old man Osgood Fielding III. As if that wasn’t enough trouble already, Spats Colombo arrives with his crew at a meeting with some powerful crime lords. Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis star in this cross-dressing farce from Billy Wilder, full of jokes and humor.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

2 ‘Toy Story’ (1995)

Toy Story (1995)

Director: John Lasseter
Stars: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles

IMDb: 8.3/10 1M | Popularity: 714 | Metascore: 96 | Top 250: #74

Andy is a little boy who loves spending time in his room playing with his toys, especially his doll, Woody. But what happens when Andy isn’t around? His toys come to life!

“Toy Story” was Pixar’s first animated feature film. It shows why they are such a successful studio today – creating stories that appeal to adults as much as children, thanks to jokes and references only grownups would understand. The story of the rivalry between beloved cowboy-toy Woody (Tom Hanks) and Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) combines adventure with genuine heart making it one of Pixar’s most memorable movies yet.

[ Watch on Prime Video ]

1 ‘The Great Dictator’ (1940)

The Great Dictator (1940)

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Jack Oakie

IMDb: 8.4/10 227K | Popularity: 2,675 | Top 250: #62

Charlie Chaplin‘s classic 1940 satire portrays the fictional dictator Adenoid Hynckel, mocking Adolf Hitler. In one of the movie’s most iconic scenes, he dances with a giant globe – a humorous take on megalomania and a reminder of Hynkel’s murderous intentions. There are also references to ‘concentration camps’, foreshadowing what was yet to come.

But while this film has its share of comedy, it ultimately tells a story about courage in the face of adversity, namely that of an innocent Jewish barber who is released from a hospital after suffering memory loss during World War I and finds himself living under oppressive rule.

[ Watch on HBO Max ]

Jimmy P

Senior Editor, BuddyTV