Our Top Funniest Films of 2016 So Far
2016 will definitely bring the laughs this year. The flood of sequels currently overflowing Hollywood continues in the comedy movies category, with follow-ups to some of the genre’s biggest laugh makers. Stand up comedian Kevin Hart re-teams with tough guy Ice Cube for a second Ride Along, while Seth Rogen and Zac Efron once again become Neighbors in Sorority Rising. But in the biggest shadows of buzz and hype lies Zoolander No. 2, the follow up to the 2001 classic that has everyone bringing back their Wham! CD’s and hitting the Blue Steel.
Like horror films, comedy’s core audience will always guarantee a steady box office flow, but few manage to burst through the plastic and onto the main-stage with superheroes and action starts. There are exceptions, however, like the first Ride Along, which set the record for highest opening weekend in the history of January. All in all, the upcoming comedies of 2016 are guaranteed to knock the funny bone of viewers, whether through a pose or a frat party. Below are some of the funniest movies releasing in 2016.
Ride Along 2 – Release Date: January 15th 2016
After dominating the January of two years prior, tough Atlanta cop James Payton (Ice Cube) and recently graduated rookie officer Ben Barber (Kevin Hart) hit the streets in this hard nosed action-comedy. Ben has since won the blessings of his soon to be brother-in-law to marry Angela (Tika Sumpter), but before any wedding bells chime, the duo is assigned to a high stakes case in Florida. Working hand in hand with Miami PD, Payton and Barber join forces to take down slick drug kingpin Antonio Pope (Benjamin Bratt) and his crew. Equal parts hilarity and over-the-top action, Ride Along 2 is a slam dunk of odd coupled magic.
Hail Caesar! – Release Date: February 5th 2016
As the resident “fix-it” man of Hollywood, Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin) nabs a cushy case when he’s hired to keep a leash on famous actor Baird Whitlock (George Clooney). But things take a drunken turn for the worse when a hungover Whitlock is kidnapped by an oddball group dubbed “The Future,” making Mannix the reluctant negotiator and money collector. If that wasn’t enough, having to deal with snobby directors (Ralph Fiennes), nebbish studio workers (Jonah Hill), and eccentric movie stars (Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum) quickly fill up the rest of Eddie’s small plate. A welcome return to dramedy from the always acclaimed Joel & Ethan Coen.
Zoolander No. 2 – Release Date: February 12th 2016
It’s been fifteen years since audiences last saw legendary male model Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller), who just so happened to thwart an assassination attempt and rescue the free world. But things take a turn for the worse when multiple musical celebrities are found murdered with Derek’s iconic “Blue Steel” expression on their faces. As a result, Zoolander and modeling pal Hansel MacDonald (Owen Wilson) are recruited by Interpol to infiltrate the new cutthroat world of high fashion. It doesn’t help matters that Jacobim Mugatu (Will Ferrell) is recently released from prison and seeking revenge against the man who ruined his evil plans: Zoolander. As far as sequels go, this uber-anticipated release will hit big with comedy audiences.
Everybody Wants Some – Release Date: April 1st 2016
With the recent double whammy of Before Midnight (2013) and Best Picture nominee Boyhood (2014), it seems only natural that director Richard Linklater returns to the freewheeling charm that first captured audiences in Dazed And Confused (1993). This film, dubbed a “spiritual sequel” to the teen classic, strides along with college freshmen Jake (Blake Jenner) as he tries to get in good with the upper class baseball team; a process that provides plenty of laughs and profound moments of sincerity. Linklater was a ballplayer back in his day, and the 1980 time period screams personal experience, down to the speaker-rattling soundtrack consisting of Van Halen and “My Sharona.” Everybody Wants Some also echoes it’s predecessor in casting, as up-and-comers Will Brittain, Ryan Guzman, and Wyatt Russell step into the shoes left by Jason London, Wiley Wiggins, and, of course, Matthew McConaughey. Whether these newbies live up to the standards of their 70’s counterparts is more or less a moot point – Linklater knows how to make a fun movie, and Everybody Wants Some will be a blast.
Keeping Up With Joneses – Release Date: April 1st 2016
The espionage and Isla Fisher theme continues on through with the April Fool’s Day release of Keeping Up With The Joneses. As a simple suburban couple who lives the blue collar life, things turn tumultuous with the arrival of seemingly perfect next door neighbors. But that perfection quickly peels away to reveal their true identities: that of highly trained government spies. Supported by a killer cast of Zach Galifianakis, Jon Hamm, Isla Fisher, and Gal Gadot, Joneses will supplant moviegoers with a hilarious send up of paranoia thrillers like Arlington Road (1999) and Disturbia (2007). The only challenge will be trying to keep up with one of the underdog anticipations of 2016.
Barbershop: The Next Cut – Release Date: April 15th 2016
Just when audiences thought they had closed up shop for good, the Barbershop is back open for business. As the sequel to 2004’s Barbershop 2, the film finds Calvin (Ice Cube), Eddie (Cedric The Entertainer), and the rest of the crew as they fight to keep their business alive despite the eruption of gang wars out on the streets. Yet another predictable serving of comedy madness, made enjoyable by the colorful personalities on display via director Malcolm J. Lee. As Spike’s cousin and the man behind cult hits like Undercover Brother (2002), Lee knows when to pull the strings behind his talented cast and let their chatterbox energy do the talking. Cube continues to be the steadfast leader, but most of the laughs wind up going to side guys like Mike Epps, Anthony Anderson, and J.B. Smoove. There’s also some surprising rapper cameos, most notably by the likes of Nicki Minaj and Tyga, who fit right in with trash talk urgency to spare. It’s all fun and games, but seriously, where is Kevin Hart? Hopefully in Barbershop 4.
Keanu – Release Date: April 29th 2016
It’s tough to decipher what the oddest thing is about Keanu. It could be the blatant nod to an often mocked Matrix star. Or perhaps the unabashed love for George Michael that edges two classic songs into the trailer. But most likely, it’s simply the fact that Comedy Central’s Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele actually talked a studio into letting them transplant their off-the-wall humor into a feature length film. Rell (Key) happens across a cat that he soon comes to love, but then, when it’s stolen by gang bangers, it’s up to him and his buddy Clarence (Peele) to save the day. Yes, the cat’s name is Keanu. And working from a self-penned script, the comedy duo have an utter ball verbally jabbing their way around racial stereotypes, masculinity, and rapper Method Man is more than one hilarious scene. Throw in Gabrielle Union and Will Forte for good measure, and a viewing of Keanu will only be able to elicit one word: “Whoa.”
Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising – Release Date: May 20th 2016
Mac Radner (Seth Rogen) and his wife Kelly (Rose Byrne) went through the ringer in the first Neighbors when Frat kingpin Teddy Sanders (Zac Efron) declared all out war. But this time, with the trio having declared a truce, a new enemy arises: the sorority. Headed by vicious leader Chloe Grace Moretz, Teddy and his immature adult pals must join forces to drive the college crazy sisters out of their neighborhood. As the follow up to what amounted to a comedy blockbuster in 2014, director Nicholas Stoller, responsible for Frat Pack entries like Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008) and Get Him To The Greek (2010), brings his typical flair for Rogen-esque humor and the results will be nothing if not hilarious.
Central Intelligence – Release Date: June 17th 2016
Saving the world takes a little Hart and a big Johnson. That’s the utterly brilliant tagline of Central Intelligence, an odd-couple pairing for the ages between Kevin Hart and Dwayne Johnson – the most physically mismatched duo you’ll ever be able to see onscreen. Bob Stone (Johnson), a former high school geek, becomes a highly sophisticated CIA agent, while the former “big man on campus” (Kevin Hart) has settled into a dull accountant job. But worlds collide when Stone coerces his small fry classmate into a cracking a case of shootouts, espionage, and death around every corner. As a comedy, Central Intelligence will be a complete delight, packed with so many size jokes and witty one-liners from Hart it’ll easily dispel any predictable spy plots shoehorned in. Johnson also seems to be in his element as an uber-cool He-Man, his presence a constant punchline to his tiny partner. I guess this film is why Kevin Hart couldn’t be in Barbershop 3 – looks like it was worth it.
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates – Release Date: July 8th 2016
Who knew Zac Efron and Adam DeVine could be such believable brothers? They even look alike in a strange, fratty kind of way. Anyways, they play Dave and Mike Stangle, a pair of wild siblings forced to find respectable dates for their sister’s wedding. A quick appearance on The Wendy Williams Show, and Tatiana (Aubrey Plaza) and Alice (Anna Kendrick) soon dupe the brothers into thinking they’re a respectable duo. Of course, the ladies aren’t ladies at all, and turn out even crazier than the wild men they were sent in to tame when all is said done. Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates almost has too much talent to fall flat, as all four leads flash not only impeccable comedic timing but a killer chemistry that’s simply infectious onscreen. The premise is totally silly from the start, but viewers will be so wrapped up in the biting banter that it’ll pass as easily as buying a ticket to this certified crowd pleaser.
Sausage Party – Release Date: August 12th 2016
Don’t let the kindly animation fool you, Sausage Party is as odd as it sounds. It stars Seth Rogen as a sausage who falls out of the shopping cart and makes new friends along his journey to get back to his aisle before the Fourth of July sale. That it sounds like stoner psychobabble isn’t surprising in the slightest given it’s the collective brainchild of Rogen and writer Evan Goldberg; backed by usual goofball lineup Jonah Hill, James Franco, Kristen Wiig, and Michael Cera among a ridiculous amount of other notables. There’s not much else to divulge in terms of plot or what to expect, outside of a lot of Sausage jokes and biting crudity on the parts of all involved. For the Rogen collective, it’ll be yet another serving to the fanbase. For the average viewer, it might just be strange enough to rangle in a few more fans. Definitely one of the more distinct releases this year.
Masterminds – Release Date: September 30th 2016
From the Rogen Pack to the SNL roster, Masterminds plays things out in real life fashion, based on the Loomis Fargo robbery of 1997. The culprits, Louis Scott Ghantt (Zach Galifianakis) and Kelly Campbell (Kristen Wiig), are about as clueless as two thieves can be, backed by morons Steve Chambers (Owen Wilson) and Mike McKinney (Jason Sudeikis) meant to ensure any good ideas get squashed at inception. Director Jared Hess, who’s made a career out of spinning lunacy into comedy gold with Napoleon Dynamite (2004) and Nacho Libre (2006), will be just fine as long as he brings the same spirit of awkward humor to the table – something that’s thoroughly captured in the trailer. Rounded out with even more SNL personnel like Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones, Masterminds will be one of the most thoroughly silly and surprisingly true stories of the year.
Bad Santa 2 – Release Date: November 23rd 2016
Mark Waters is best known for directing family friendly stuff like Freaky Friday (2003) and Mean Girls (2004), so it’s pretty interesting to see him take the reins behind something as deliciously, well, bad, as Bad Santa 2. As the sequel to the 2003 cult classic, this film finds Willie T. Stoke (Billy Bob Thorton) up to no good once more in a plot that hasn’t been divulged to the public but remains pretty unimportant to the pleasure of seeing such a despicable con man come back. Sadly, the late Bernie Mac will not be reprising his role of Gin Slagel, which opens up the floor to new characters like Christina Hendricks and Kathy Bates as Willie’s loud mouthed mom. Santa 2 looks as though it’s following in the footsteps of Anchorman and Zoolander by following up with long anticipated sequels that make a bundle – only problem is, they haven’t been very good. Hopefully Willie Stoke will be able to break the spirit of Sequels Past.