Comedy Movies 2017
The Top 10 Comedy Movies List in 2017 – (So Far)
Comedies are always a favorite for Hollywood: inexpensive in budget and potentially massive in box office– especially when stars like Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson are involved. Per usual, storylines come in lightweight fodder, whether it be two brothers looking for their dad (Bastards), a superhero looking for his identity (The LEGO Batman Movie), or two school teachers looking to settle a score (Fist Fight). As is the case with most genres, the most anticipated material to come in 2017 is of the reboot persuasion– particularly modern takes on Baywatch and Jumanji. In both, Johnson will lead all-star casts and revamp pop culture staples with the wit (and hopeful success) that came with their predecessors. Who knows, if Baywatch, with it’s campy concept and gorgeous cast, could even squeeze some sequels into the equation. Either way, the laughs are sure to supply some much needed respite from the superheroes and the dramatic exchanges had elsewhere on the big screen.
Abrasively titled, goofily plotted, and overwrought with comedic talent, Bastards is precisely the kind of comedy one would expect from Ed Helms and Owen Wilson. The quirky stars will play the film’s titular “heroes”, who grew up thinking their father had died before discovering that was untrue. Now, in search of their real family lineage, the bumbling pair circumvent an array of screwballs like J.K. Simmons, Glenn Close, Katt Williams, Terry Bradshaw, and Ving Rhames along the way. Bastards is sure to be a crude and crass comedy, but given these low expectations, the cast and director Lawrence Sher (cinematographer on The Hangover and The Dictator) are poised to come through.
THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE
It’s safe to say everyone was shocked by the success of The LEGO Movie (2014). By taking a relatively gimmicky concept and executing with poignant, hilarious panache, directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller jumpstarted an entire Cinematic Universe. This is where The LEGO Batman Movie, which was teased as far back as 2015, comes into play. Gotham’s protector was introduced in the first LEGO Movie, but here, given the chance to play with iconic characters like Robin (Michael Cera), Batgirl (Rosario Dawson) and his loyal butler Alfred (Ralph Fiennes). Despite these alleys, Batman must go on a journey of self-discovery if he is to defeat his archenemy The Joker (Zach Galifianakis) and reclaim Gotham City.
Ice Cube, the once daunting lyricist behind N.W.A., has spent the last decade plus being the tough guy in comedies like 21 Jump Street (2012) and Ride Along (2014). Fist Fight, the latest outing for Cube, is yet another addition to this club. The rapper-turned-actor plays Ron Strickland, an old school teacher who is wrongly fired due to spastic colleague Andy Campbell (Charlie Day). In response to this unfair canning, Strickland challenges Campbell to an after school fist fight– one which undoubtedly be in Strickland’s favor. The film’s set-up is almost confusingly simple, but the additional personalities of Dennis Haysbert, Christina Hendricks, Tracy Morgan, and Jillian Bell are insurance that Fist Fight will at the very least supply some killer charisma.
In the grand tradition of Mask (1985), Wonder details the struggle of August “Auggie” Pullman (Jacob Tremblay), a boy born with a severe facial deformity. As he tries to fit in at school and teach others that beauty can be on the inside, his supportive parents (Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson) strive to make him feel like the special soul that he is. Adapted from the novel by R.J. Palacio, Wonder will mark Stephen Chbosky’s first directorial effort since 2012’s delightful indie The Perks of Being A Wallflower. Based on that film, and the screenwriting work he’s done since on films like Allegiant (2016) and the upcoming Beauty and the Beast (2017), it seems probable that he’ll nail the target yet again.
THE WAR WITH GRANDPA
Pulled from the pages of Robert Kimmel Smith’s 1984 novel, The War With Grandpa proceeds with delightful, adoring silliness. Peter (Max Jenkins) is upset that he suddenly has to share his room with his grandfather, feeling the place is his and only his. As a result, the plucky young boy decides to wage war on the old man until he has successfully regained control of the locale. Little has been discussed or revealed about the film thus far, aside from the fact that Christopher Walken, Robert De Niro, and Laura Marano are slated to play supporting players opposite Jenkins. Director Tim Hill is no stranger to family fun, having helmed Spongebob Squarepants for almost two decades, but it remains to be seen if he can translate the magic to live action.
This one will be tough for a lot of people to swallow. Jumanji, the delightful 1995 family adventure starring Robin Williams, is indeed being given a belated sequel/reboot. And, like most sequels and reboots getting churned out these days, it is starring WWE star-turned-movie star, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Along with Jack Black and Kevin Hart, Johnson will play three pals who unwittingly get caught up in the dangerous game over two decades after it last wreaked havoc. In speaking on the film’s sensitive legacy, Johnson has stated that it will be an “honor to introduce a whole new generation to the amazing world of Jumanji.” The fans will be especially critical of this one, so the verdict is still out.
On the bright side, this reboot of the iconic TV series seems prime material for Dwayne Johnson to remold. The strapping presence will assume the lead role of Mitch Buchannon in Baywatch, the lifeguard melodrama that’s now getting a comedic spin courtesy of director Seth Gordon (Horrible Bosses, Identity Thief). Johnson will also have support out in the sands from Zac Efron, Priyanka Chopra, and Alexandra Daddario, ensuring there will be plenty of skin and snappy personalities to keep this tongue-in-cheek adaptation sharp. It is certainly the least revered of recent reboot news, and for that alone, Baywatch looks to be one of the year’s easiest watches.