When times are tough and laughs are few and far between, there's nothing like streaming a good comedy to help you recenter yourself. Paradoxically, however, with so many comedic gems available on Netflix, it's easy to feel overwhelmed scrolling through the platform's neverending pages of content. 

With that in mind, we've combed through the streamer in search of the best of the best comedy. Whether you're looking for romance, satire, something farcical, raunchy, or cerebral, here's EW's list of the funniest films you should be watching on the streamer as of February 2023.

NOTE: All titles added to our list in February 2023 have an asterisk next to them.

Monty Python's Life of Brian (1979)

Credit: Everett Collection

Monty Python brought their signature off-the-wall sense of humor to religion with this satire about a young Jewish man, Brian Cohen (Graham Chapman), born next door to (and on the same day as) Jesus Christ. He is mistaken for the Messiah, which leads to a series of events that include faking miracles and his eventual crucifixion. It features the infamous scene where Brian and his fellow crucified sufferers sing the Monty Python classic "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life." The film was condemned and declared blasphemous by some religious groups, only upping its comedic and controversial credentials.

Best gags: Mob scenes, miracle cures, and Spartacus spoofs

Talent: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin, Sue Jones-Davies

She's Gotta Have It (1986)

Tracy Camilla Johns and Spike Lee in 'She's Gotta Have It'
Credit: Everett Collection

She's Gotta Have It (1986)

Spike Lee's feature directorial debut comes to us courtesy of this dramedy about relationships and sex. She's Gotta Have It follows Nola Darling (Tracy Camilla Johns) as she juggles relationships with three men. Forced to make a choice between the three of them, she turns the tables and asks for a life of celibate monogamy. But it's the way the movie celebrates a woman's sexual and romantic choices, refusing to kowtow to societal expectations, that makes it a true standout.

Best gags: A three-timing heroine, attempts at celibacy, the concept of monogamy

Talent: Tracy Camilla Johns, Tommy Redmond Hicks, John Canada Terrell, Spike Lee, S. Epatha Merkerson

*Barbershop 2: Back in Business (2004)

Queen Latifah Best Roles
Credit: Everett Collection

The widely-anticipated sequel to 2002's Barbershop, Barbershop 2: Back in Business returns viewers to everyone's favorite hair cutting joint on Chicago's South Side. With most of the first film's cast returning —  plus the new additions of Queen Latifah, Kenan Thompson, and a young Keke Palmer making her movie debut — Barbershop 2 picks up with Calvin Palmer Jr. (Ice Cube) in his new role as shop owner. With his family's business threatened by gentrification and the emergence of a rival hair cuttery, Calvin must figure out how to save his shop and community. Though Barbershop 2 presents with a little more heart and history than its joke-slinging predecessor, the end results are just as sharp.      

Best gags: Prescient commentary about R. Kelly, hair cutting catastrophes

EW grade: B+ (read the review)

Talent: Ice Cube, Cedric the Entertainer, Sean Patrick Thomas, Harry Lennix, Eve, Kenan Thompson, Queen Latifah, Keke Palmer

*Wedding Crashers (2005)

Wedding Crashers
Credit: Richard Cartwright

A bromantic comedy with more depth than meets the eye, Wedding Crashers tells the story of John (Owen Wilson) and Jeremy (Vince Vaughn), two D.C. mediators with little faith in the sacred bonds of matrimony. What they do believe in, however, is the power of the wedding reception to act as an accelerant for picking up women, which is why these two best friends have turned the act of crashing weddings into a seasonal sport. But after John meets Claire (Rachel McAdams) at her sister's wedding, he finds he's willing to overlook traditional crashing etiquette to get closer. And while spending the weekend with Claire's wealthy and powerful family at their Maryland compound, John and Jeremy are forced to reexamine their beliefs around love and marriage, and discover there might be more to life than crashing. 

Best gags: Stage five clingers, epic partying, Vince Vaughn's slow deterioration 

EW grade: A- (read the review)

Talent: Owen Wilson, Vince Vaughn, Christopher Walken, Rachel McAdams, Isla Fisher, Jane Seymour, Bradley Cooper

*Pineapple Express (2008)

James Franco and Seth Rogen in 'Pineapple Express'
| Credit: Darren Michaels/Columbia

Long before Seth Rogen was making pot paraphernalia, he was making stoner films — and Pineapple Express is a stoner film for the ages. A crime comedy, the movie follows Dale (Rogen) and his drug dealer Saul (James Franco) who are forced to flee town after Dale accidentally witnesses a corrupt cop (Rosie Perez) and a drug lord (Gary Cole) execute a rival gang leader. In 2008, producer Judd Apatow told EW that the role of Saul was inspired by Brad Pitt's stoner character Floyd in the 1993 film True Romance, but the rest of the film comes straight from the brains of Rogen and his co-writer Evan Goldberg — likely with the help of a few Pineapple Express-infused brainstorming sessions.

Best gags: Poorly thought out car chases, dumpster dives, following stoner logic

EW grade: B (read the review)

Talent: Seth Rogen, James Franco, Danny McBride, Gary Cole, Craig Robinson, Rosie Perez, Ken Jeong, Amber Heard, Ed Begley Jr., Bill Hader 

*Julie & Julia (2009)

Credit: Jonathan Wenk/Columbia

In the infant days of the Internet as we know it, a young aspiring writer in New York City attempted to cook 524 of Julia Child's recipes in her tiny kitchen and blog about the results. The success of that project led to a bestselling memoir, and, later, a Nora Ephron-directed film chronicling the adventures of Julie (Amy Adams), the modern food writer, and Julia (Meryl Streep), the mid-century female chef and cookbook author. A consummate Streep performance in which the actress doesn't so much disappear into the character as she does wear her like a second skin, Julie & Julia is one of those feel-good movies Hollywood just doesn't make anymore. And after the recent passing of Julie Powell, the food writer on which the character of Julie is based, what better way to honor her memory than with a viewing of this incredible film? 

Best gags: Food gone feral, pop-up lobsters, Amy Adams' haircut 

EW grade: B+ (read the review)

Talent: Meryl Streep, Amy Adams, Stanley Tucci, Chris Messina, Jane Lynch 

*Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)

Credit: Everett Collection

How hard are you willing to fight for love? For 22-year-old musician Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera), the answer to that question is very hard. After meeting and falling in love with Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), Scott discovers that to win her hand, he must first defeat her seven evil exes in combat. A romantic action comedy film based on the graphic novel series and told using video game and comic-style edits and visual imagery, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World may have Sex Bob-ombed at the box office, but the film has since developed a loyal cult following, and rightly so. With an ensemble cast featuring some of the best 20-something comedic talent the early 2010s had to offer, Scott Pilgrim is a unique comedy with a style that's all its own.  

Best gags: Next-level battle of the bands, Amazon bits, any time Kieran Culkin is onscreen

EW grade: B+ (read the review)

Talent: Michael Cera, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Kieran Culkin, Chris Evans, Anna Kendrick, Brie Larson, Alison Pill, Aubrey Plaza, Jason Schwartzman

*30 Minutes or Less (2011)

Credit: Everett Collection

Pizza delivery driver Nick (Jesse Eisenberg) may have hit his nadir: he's feuding with his best friend Chet (Aziz Ansari), and he can't seem to drum up the motivation required to make his deliveries within the promised 30-minute window. Then, during a pizza run gone wrong, Nick is kidnapped, strapped to a bomb, and instructed to return with $100,000 for his captors (Danny McBride and Nick Swardson), or risk being blown up. Those who have watched Netflix's true crime documentary series, Evil Genius, might find the plot of the action comedy 30 Minutes or Less vaguely familiar, but according to the filmmakers and stars, the story wasn't inspired by the events that led to pizza delivery driver Brian Wells' murder. (And unlike Wells' tragic death, 30 Minutes is actually funny.)  

Best gags: Watermelon hunting, amateur bank robbing, high speed high driving

EW grade: B+ (read the review)

*Bad Words (2014)

Credit: Everett Collection

Good spelling and bad behavior are on full display in the dark comedy, Bad Words. Starring and directed by Jason Bateman in his feature film directorial debut, Bad Words is a cross between Billy Madison and the Broadway musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (sans singing or dancing). Guy (Bateman) is a 40-year-old who finds a loophole in the country's biggest children's spelling bee, enabling him to compete. Joined by a reporter (Kathryn Hahn), Guy's scheme manages to piss off the spelling bee's director (Allison Janney), all of the parents, and most of his fellow competitors.     

Best gags: Age inappropriate friendships, corrupting minors, bad sportsmanship 

EW grade: A (read the review)

*Paddington (2015)

Credit: Everett Collection

There are few things the Internet can agree on, but the undisputed dominance of the 2015 semi-animated film Paddington, starring beloved children's book character Paddington Bear, just happens to be one of those things. Garnering a 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and hailed for its charming script, family friendly content, and excellent voice acting courtesy of star Ben Whishaw, the movie has since amassed a following of Paddington loyalists, prompting a sequel in 2017. If you're looking for a heartwarming film, Paddington should be number one on your list  — and if you need a topical reason to check out the movie, you should know that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky voiced everyone's favorite bear in the film's Ukrainian release. 

Best gags: Domesticating a Peruvian bear, general destruction, Nicole Kidman as an evil taxidermist 

EW grade: A (read the review)

Talent: Ben Whishaw, Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Julie Walters, Nicole Kidman

Hail, Caesar! (2016)

HAIL, CAESAR!, Channing Tatum, 2016. ph: Alison Cohen Rosa/ © Universal Pictures /Courtesy Everett
Credit: Everett Collection

The Coen brothers' love letter to classic Hollywood is an under-sung delight. Real-life studio fixer Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin) struggles to keep his bumbling studio stars in line — from the romantic entanglements of young star Hobie Doyle (Alden Ehrenreich) to the disappearance of leading man Baird Whitlock (George Clooney). The Coens lovingly send up everyone from famous gossip columnist Louella Parsons to bathing beauty Esther Williams. And if watching George Clooney play a buffoon of a movie star isn't a big enough delight, you get Channing Tatum doing his best Gene Kelly for good measure.

Best gags: Feuding twin gossip columnists, accidental communism, Southern accents, water stunts, Clooney kidnapping

EW grade: B+ (read the review)

Talent: Josh Brolin, George Clooney, Tilda Swinton, Alden Ehrenreich, Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum, Ralph Fiennes, Frances McDormand, Jonah Hill, Alison Pill 

*Private Life (2018)

Private Life
Credit: Netflix

There are untold parenting comedies, but 2018's Private Life is one of the few films to tackle the issues around infertility with comedy, honesty, and compassion. Kathryn Hahn and Paul Giamatti star as Rachel and Richard, a pair of New York City artists desperate for a child and willing to explore every option — often at the expense of their finances and relationship. When their college dropout niece Sadie offers up her eggs, Rachel and Richard must decide how far they're willing to go for a baby, and at what point it's okay to give up trying. Showcasing beautiful performances from the movie's leads, this relevant, poignant film is a gift to anyone who might need it.      

Best gags: Fertility frustrations, emotional breakdowns, slap fights on the streets

EW grade: A (read the review)

Talent: Kathryn Hahn, Paul Giamatti, Kayli Carter, Molly Shannon

Always Be My Maybe (2019)

Always Be My Maybe
Credit: Doane Gregory/Netflix

This Netflix original rom-com about estranged childhood best friends Sasha (Ali Wong) and Marcus (Randall Park) is both a romantic delight and a love letter to San Francisco. While Sasha has found explosive success as a chef, Marcus has remained stunted by the death of his mother. The two help each other find balance along the way, while also providing an opportunity for a hilarious, completely brilliant Keanu Reeves cameo.

Best gags: Garage bands, awkward birthday parties, pretentious restaurants, and did we mention Keanu?

EW grade: B (read the review)

Talent: Ali Wong, Randall Park, Keanu Reeves, Daniel Dae Kim, James Saito, Michelle Buteau, Vivian Bang

Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (2020)

Credit: Elizabeth Viggiano/NETFLIX

Will Ferrell continues his streak of playing outlandish characters in unique competitive settings — this time in the world of the Eurovision Song Contest. He is Lars Erickssong, songwriting and performance partner of Rachel McAdams' Sigrit Ericksdóttir. After a horrific twist of fate lands them a coveted spot in the Eurovision contest, they bring their wacky songwriting skills to Scotland where they must contend with Russian favorite Alexander Lemtov (Dan Stevens) while confronting their long-gestating romantic feelings for each other. Pierce Brosnan also stars as Lars' brusque father. The emotional ballad "Husavik" was Oscar-nominated for Best Original Song, but we don't want to hear anything but "Jaja Ding Dong."

Best gags: The elves, "Jaja Ding Dong," rude American tourists, "Lion of Love"

EW grade: B- (read the review)

Talent: Will Ferrell, Rachel McAdams, Pierce Brosnan, Dan Stevens, Demi Lovato 

*Bo Burnham: Inside (2021)

Bo Burnham
Bo Burnham sings 'That Funny Feeling' in 'Bo Burnham: Inside' on Netflix
| Credit: Netflix

While the rest of us were using our pandemic free time to make sourdough starters and TikTok accounts, comedian, director, and creative force Bo Burnham locked himself in a room and emerged several months later with one of the most affecting and thought-provoking projects of that cultural period. A one-man production, Burnham wrote, performed, directed, and edited his entire 87-minute special, which satirizes everything from digital culture and social media, to FaceTiming with his Mom, to the singularly unique 2020 paradox of trying to find the point in creating comedy and content at the height of a deadly pandemic. The first item we'd nominate for inclusion in a Covid-era cultural time capsule, Bo Burnham: Inside is a creative triumph and historical achievement. 

Best gags: "Welcome to the Internet," "White Woman's Instagram," "How the World Works" 

EW grade: A- (read the review)

Talent: Bo Burnham

*Bullet Train (2022)

Bullet Train
Brad Pitt and Sandra Bullock reunite in 'Bullet Train.'
| Credit: Scott Garfield/Sony

The only thing that moves faster than Japan's state-of-the-art transit system is the plot of this Brad Pitt-led ensemble action comedy. When a father seeking vengeance, an American operative experiencing a string of bad luck, and several independent assassins hailing from around the world all end up on the same bullet train bound for Kyoto, the results are violent — and the survivors minimal. Based on the 2010 novel Maria Beetle, and tonally reminiscent of Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill with a little Snatch thrown in for spice, Bullet Train speeds along on a track laid with action, jokes, plot twists, and more death scenes that you can shake a sword at. 

Best gags: Brad Pitt's bucket hat, silent fight scenes in the Quiet Car, mistaken identities

EW grade: B+ (read the review)

Talent: Brad Pitt, Joey King, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Brian Tyree Henry, Andrew Koji, Hiroyuki Sanada, Michael Shannon, Sandra Bullock, Zazie Beetz

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