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The 35 best funny family movies for your next comedy film night

Order the pizza. Pop the popcorn. Movie night just got a whole lot funnier

Edited by
Andy Kryza

Too often, the phrase ‘family movie’ is thought of as a euphemism for ‘a movie for kids’, and ‘family comedy’ as the sort of movie filled with pratfalls, fart jokes and groan-inducing punchlines. And, hey, there’s nothing wrong with a good fart joke. But the truth is that ‘family comedy’ doesn’t have to mean juvenile.

As you’ll see, these 35 flicks are funny for the whole family, with gags guaranteed to crack up every demographic on the couch, from the wee ones to the oldies to the surly teenagers. Sure, the laughs may not be ‘sophisticated’ exactly, but if they get everyone giggling in unison, well, is there any bonding experience than that?

Written by Hannah Doolin, Danielle Valente, Alim Kheraj, Oliver Strand, Andy Kryza & Matthew Singer


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The 100 best animated movies of all-time

Best funny family movies

Paddington (2014 + 2017)
Photogrpah: Courtesy StudioCanal

1. Paddington (2014 + 2017)

Want to start a debate? Ask which is funnier, Paddington or Paddington 2. Paddington has the bathtub scene and the deliciously evil taxidermist Millicent Clyde (Nicole Kidman), while Paddington 2 has the pink prisoner uniforms and the song-and-dance numbers by Phoenix Buchanan (Hugh Grant). Point is, the Paddington series is hilarious. As important, these films are good-natured, and feature important lessons about kindness and friendship. Rated PG.

Monsters, Inc. (2001)
Photograph: Courtesy Disney

2. Monsters, Inc. (2001)

This Disney Pixar film is a new classic. It tells the story of monsters Sully (John Goodman) and Mike (Billy Crystal), who work together at Monsters, Inc., a power company fueled by the screams of human children collected by monsters who go into the human world to scare them. When a haunting fail brings a small child into their world, they must work together to make things hilariously right. Rated G.

The Mitchells vs the Machines (2021)
Photograph: ©2021 SPAI. All Rights Reserved.

3. The Mitchells vs the Machines (2021)

From Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the creative brains behind Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, comes a madly eccentric and wildly inventive animated movie, merging the now familiar fractured family head out on a restorative road trip trope with an unexpected robot apocalypse. Featuring, among other things, a ginormous mutant Furby and Olivia Colman as an A.I. with evil plans, it also contains an astute social commentary about the often adverse effects of technology on our lives, delivered in a way that any screen-hungry little ones might actually listen to. Rated PG.

The Muppets (2011)
Patrick Wymore

4. The Muppets (2011)

By the 2010s, the Muppets – those daffy felt creatures first created by Jim Henson in the ’70s – were beloved pop-culture evergreens, but it had been at least a decade since they’d been considered cool. Enter Jason Segel. The avowed Muppet-lover brought the franchise back to relevancy with this pitch-perfect revival, and he did so without changing anything about what made Kermit and the gang so universally beloved. The plot is knowingly standard – an oil tycoon (Chris Cooper) wants to tear down the old Muppet Theatre, forcing the gang to put on a benefit show in an attempt to save it – but the hysterical musical numbers, showbiz-skewering jokes and heartfelt moments make it a glorious comeback the whole family will love. Rated PG

Zootopia (2016)
©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

5. Zootopia (2016)

This animated adventure takes the idea of talking animals somewhere fresh by giving us a distinctly human world, with cities, streets and ice cream parlors populated by almost every mammal you can think of. It tells the story of Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin), a do-gooder who's the first bunny to join the police—and who finds herself needing the help of Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman), a con artist fox. You know how it's going to end—it is a Disney film, after all—but the journey is delightful, especially a brilliant comic slow burn with a very leisurely bureaucratic sloth. Rated PG.

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It’s maybe only the second best movie about a stolen bike, but, then, Vittorio De Sica never thought to have his protagonist dance on a bar to ward off an angry biker gang. Paul Reubens had been doing his lovable manchild act on stage since the ’70s, but his feature film debut turned him into a pop-culture icon and introduced director Tim Burton as one of Hollywood’s most imaginative filmmakers. It remains a wild, wacky, winking romp today – just be prepared for the kids not to sleep for a few days after encountering Large Marge. Rated PG.

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The best entry-level introduction to the manic live-action wonders of Robin Williams (sorry… Hook isn’t as good as you remember), Jumanji doubles as a raucous special-effects bonanza with light scares and a whole lot of kid-friendly adventure. Sure, it’s become a bit dated, but it still stands up as a perfect Saturday matinee yarn… or a double feature with the Dwayne Johnson-starring reboot. Rated PG.

Finding Nemo (2003)
Photograph: Courtesy Channel 5 Broadcasting/Finding Nemo

8. Finding Nemo (2003)

Debates rage – ever so politely – over which modern Pixar classic is the best of the bunch, and while the argument usually ends up a dozen-way tie for first, Finding Nemo may edge out the competition by a fin. When a rebellious clownfish swims away from the safety of their coral reef, his anxious widowed father must face his biggest fears and venture across the ocean to find him. It’s a lesson that children should probably heed their parents’ warnings about the world… and that parents can learn a thing or two from their kids as well. Rated PG.

Wreck It Ralph (2012 + 2018)
Photograph: Disney

9. Wreck It Ralph (2012 + 2018)

There's an arcade game character, Ralph, who's grown tired of his bad-guy persona. He embarks on a quest to prove that he can be nice, but trouble follows. In the sequel, which hit theaters in 2018, Ralph and his friend take on the World Wide Web in order to save his buddy's video game. Rated PG.

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Left behind in the chaos of a family trip, young Kevin McCallister (Macaulay Culkin) gets the run of his giant suburban Chicago home and indulges in the ultimate little-kid wish fulfillment: eating massive bowls of ice cream; jumping on his parents’ bed; rifling through his teenage brother’s stuff; and beating the crud out of some robbers. (A physiologically accurate version of Home Alone would be the goriest movie ever made. As is, the violence is basically live-action Tom & Jerry.) Written by John Hughes, the silly premise comes with a warm message about the importance of family - and of not forgetting how many children you have when leaving on vacation, no matter how late for the airport you are. Rated PG

The Incredibles (2004 + 2018)
Photograph: Courtesy Pixar

11. The Incredibles (2004 + 2018)

This super crime-fighting family has won the hearts of children and adults alike as it takes on evil. The 2018 film, The Incredibles 2, takes a page from Wonder Woman's book, as Elastigirl is off fighting crime while her hubby, Mr. Incredible, is home with the kiddos. But when the crew needs to take down another nefarious plan, they'll just have to make it work. Rated PG. 

Despicable Me (2010)
Photograph: Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment

12. Despicable Me (2010)

Steve Carell is the voice of Gru, a suburban supervillain whose seemingly innocuous home sits above a vast underground lair populated by hordes of yellow gibberish-speaking minions. Gru is prone to freeze-raying passers-by and plots to steal the moon, but when he adopts three adorable tow-headed orphan girls it’s not long before their plucky charm and winning optimism begin to melt his cold, cold heart. Rated PG.

The Goonies (1985)
Photograph: Courtesy Warner Bros.

13. The Goonies (1985)

Goonies never say die (unless it's regarding a sequel), and you'll never believe where determination gets these crazy kids. In the beloved 80s flick, a group of boys must face the music: Their homes are being taken from them, and in turn, they'll be separated. However, one precocious and relentless member of the crew is determined to find One-Eyed Willy's treasure to save their homes. Things seem somewhat plausible...until the Fratelli's get on their case. Will the kids come out of their quest successful, and more importantly, alive? Obviously. But it's a joy to see how they do it. Rated PG. 

Toy Story (1995-2019)
Photograph: Courtesy Disney/Pixar

14. Toy Story (1995-2019)

At this point, Woody, Buzz and the other inhabitants of Andy’s (and now Bonnie’s) toybox are like the Muppets: characters we’ve lived with so long that we’ll always be happy to see them, even if the movies begin to grow increasingly superfluous. The emphasis there is on ‘if’, because through four films, with a fifth on the way, the series has yet to produce anything less than delightful. The original – Pixar’s debut feature – is still a marvel, even if the then-newfangled computer animation looks a bit archaic today, while the first and second sequels tap funny bones and tug heartstrings with equal strength. And yeah, the fourth instalment is comparatively light, but it still has Forky, a miniature Frankenstein of googly eyes, pipe cleaners and an old spork, whose existential crisis is given voice by the hilarious Tony Hale. Rated PG.

Inside Out (2015)

15. Inside Out (2015)

This Pixar-animated film cleverly shows us when feelings (literally) come alive through Riley, an 11-year-old girl who has some trouble adjusting to her new environs when her parents uproot her from Minnesota and move to San Fransisco. There couldn't be better actors than Amy Poehler, Bill Hader, Mindy Kaling and Lewis Black to embody those niggling feelings better kept inside. Rated PG. 

The Willoughbys (2020)
Photograph: Netflix

16. The Willoughbys (2020)

Netflix’s underseen original takes the tried-and-true orphaned-children narrative and bends it to deranged, delightful ends. With a stacked voice cast led by Will Forte, Maya Rudolph and Martin Short, The Willoughbys flirts with going too dark—this is, after all, a tale of child abandonment—but just when things get dire, a baby vomits a full-spectrum rainbow to brighten things up. Like we said, it’s delightfully deranged. Rated PG.

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Jim Henson’s surreal vision of goblins and fart-infested bogs has achieved cult status thanks to the central performance by a glammed-out David Bowie, but the film is so much more than the Thin White Duke and his very tight pants. It’s a wildly imaginative pre-teen fairytale with some of the most spectacular puppets ever created, kicked into overdrive by some solid Bowie songs, chief of them the immortal “Magic Dance.” And though it's not a full-bore comedy, the laughs are still plentiful. Rated PG.

The Princess Bride (1987)
Princess Bride

18. The Princess Bride (1987)

Could Rob Reiner's simultaneous send-up and celebration of fairy tales have better captured the imagination of all who live for the phrase "Once upon a time..."? In-con-ceiv-able, we say! You won't find a sweeter love letter to the glories of cross-generational storytelling. Rated PG.

Shrek (2001)
Photograph: Dreamworks

19. Shrek (2001)

While kids' movies were making pop-cultural references before this DreamWorks toon came out, none of them were quite as savvy as this ogre's tale in dismantling legendary bedtime stories—and in a way that kids would find both clever and funny. It's like a collegiate Postmodernism 101 course, only aimed at elementary-school students and with better fart jokes. Rated PG.

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Setting aside the wonder of the special effect–and the difficulty of making an entire farmyard of real animals talk–this is a warm and funny story that checks all the family film boxes: Silly and slapsticky for the kids, clever and cute for the grown-ups. The story is the same as when you saw it the first time (kind-hearted Babe the pig is better at herding sheep than barking dogs), but the joy you feel when you watch the film might surprise you. Rated G.

Chicken Run (2000)

21. Chicken Run (2000)

Britain's Aardman Animations has always had a sly sense of anthropomorphist humor (see their sensational Wallace and Gromit shorts), so it's no surprise that the company's parody of The Great Escape—this time, the POWs are chickens breaking out of a farm—is hilarious. What is shocking is how what could have been a one-joke comedy becomes, in Aardman's deft clay-molding hands, something moving and absolutely poult-errific. Rated G.

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Berserk and strangely beautiful, The LEGO Movie is sheer joy: The script is witty, the satire surprisingly pointed, and the animation tactile and imaginative. Our hero Emmet (Chris Pratt), is the happiest guy in Bricksville, a construction worker who adores his coworkers, and knows that mighty President Business (Will Ferrell) has his best interests at heart. He’s thrown into an epic conflict between Business’s robot clones and the forces of creativity and invention—led, of course, by Batman and Abraham Lincoln. The 2019 sequel is just as wild, with Emmet setting out rescue his friends from the Systar System while facing down “Armamageddon.” Your little one will want to watch both the original and the sequel. Rated PG

Yes Day (2021)
Photograph: Netflix

23. Yes Day (2021)

Netflix’s Yes Day is essentially a tweenage fantasy come true – desperate to be seen as cool, parents Jennifer Garner and Édgar Ramirez agree to a day without the word ‘no,’ much to their tween children’s delight. It’s a tad hokey and the plot never completely commits to its lunatic potential, but Garner hasn’t seemed this happy on screen since 13 Going on 30. It’s good, clean (well, actually pretty messy) fun. Rated PG. 

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Speaking of Jennifer Garner, the star was never better than in this gender-flipped riff on Big, in which a teenage girl’s consciousness is transported to her adult body in the future, revealing that the grown-up world isn’t as alluring as she hoped. Until, of course, she discovers that the awkward kid she friend-zoned in junior high grew up to be Mark Ruffalo. Rated PG-13. 

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Tom Hanks’s breakout role as a kid trapped in an adult body is still one of the actor’s very best films, a master-class in awkward ticks, vulnerability and physical comedy that makes you wish America’s Dad would stop being so somber and revert to comedy. Big is a top-tier ‘80s fantasy comedy, even if the romantic subplot gives off some creepy vibes in hindsight. Rated PG.

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We don’t talk about Bruno, but good god we sure do sing about him. Don’t let the oversaturation of the Lin-Manuel Miranda-penned soundtrack sour you, though: Encanto is a modern Disney insta-classic. Feeling like an outcast in a family where everyone has magical powers except her, 15-year-old Mirabel (Stephanie Beatriz) leaves her home in the Colombian mountains to figure out where she fits in. Enchantingly animated, it’ll cast a spell on every generation in your own household - and the music really is great for at least the first 750 times you hear it. Rated PG.

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Before he set sail with the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, Gore Verbinski crafted a feature-length tribute to Rube Goldberg devices in telling this old-fashioned tale of two brothers seeking to rid a rickety old mansion of one particularly pesky mouse. Basically a live-action Looney Tunes cartoon by way of Home Alone, Mouse Hunt often feels like the best film Tim Burton never made, a madcap slapstick romp that isn’t afraid to dip its toes into black comedy. Rated PG.

Enchanted (2007)
Barry Wetcher/SMPSP

29. Enchanted (2007)

A modern-day twist on classic fairytales, Enchanted begins in conventional, animated Disney territory, with Giselle being courted by Edward, her Prince Charming. His witchy mother banishes Giselle to 21st century New York City, where the film flits from animation to live-action just as Giselle (now Amy Adams), emerges from a manhole into a world of bustling humanity. As lawyer Robert Philip (Patrick Dempsey) begins to fall for her, Edward appears (in the guise of James Mardsen) and Giselle is left facing a typically predictable rom-com dilemma. Rated PG.

Ella Enchanted (2004)
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Ella Enchanted (2004)
Before she was an Oscar-winning capital-A Actress, Anne Hathaway was the queen of 21st century princess flicks. And watching Hathaway only slightly removed from her theater-kid roots is a riot. In this retelling of the children's book, Ella must attempt to break the spell where she's forced to obey all orders bestowed onto her. Fortunately, the handsome Prince Charmont – played by Hugh Dancy – is by her side to lend a hand. Rated PG. 

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You know the drill – twin girls, separated at birth, reunite and switch places in an effort to get their parents back together under one roof. Most couples therapists will assure you this is a terrible idea. This remake of the 1961 Haley Mills classic updates the story to the ‘90s, with then-rising-star Lindsay Lohan pulling double duty and offering justification for being the biggest tween star of her era. Rated PG. 

Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)
Courtesy Walt Disney Pictures/

32. Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)

Growing up is hard, but growing down is worse. In this sci-fi comic adventure, the title pretty much says it all: a failed scientist (Rick Moranis) invents a device that can drastically alter the size of objects and ends up accidentally shrinking his children and their neighbour friends to a speck. When they get thrown out with the trash, the kids must venture through their treacherous backyard, fending off giant ants, traversing massive mud puddles and swimming through bowls of cereal to get back home. The ensuing sequels stretched the concept a tad far – we’ll see about the upcoming reboot – but the original is wildly imaginative fun. Rated PG.

Kung Fu Panda (2008–2016)
Photograph: Courtesy Netflix and FTP Edelman

33. Kung Fu Panda (2008–2016)

The trio of films garners a lot of attention for its ironic main character—the super-lazy, clumsy and out-of-shape Po, a panda bear who secretly wants to be a master of kung fu. Rated PG.

The Sandlot (1993)

34. The Sandlot (1993)

During the summer of 1962, a spotty crew of dead-end kids throw a baseball around at the neighborhood diamond. The new kid in town, Scotty Smalls, is accepted simply as a gofer, but the gang's leader, Rodriguez, takes him under his wing. The quirky crew gets into plenty of mischief outside of batting practice, and they'll have to put their heads together to get a prized baseball back from a snarling neighbor. Rated PG.

School of Rock (2003)
Courtesy Paramount Pictures

35. School of Rock (2003)

Jack Black cranks the ham levels to 11 as Dewey Finn, aka ‘Mr Schneebly,’ a struggling musician who cons his way into a teaching gig and helps a group of band nerds – and the school’s buttoned-down principal – unleash their inner rock stars. Even if Jack Black doing Jack Black things typically makes you grind your teeth, only the most hardcore party-pooper couldn’t find some level of joy in his authentic interactions with the young cast. Rated PG–13.

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