At time when we are at war in Syria and our relationship with world leaders could best be described as "iffy," it seems patently obvious that we all need a good laugh. And what better way to do this than with all the 2017 comedy movies coming out this Summer? The theaters are going to be littered with laughs for people young and old, and this might be exactly what is needed.
Making the 2017 Summer comedies stand out is the eclectic nature of the releases. There's tales of Cars trying to show their worth, a Rough Night that would test even Wonder Woman, and a film about the life of an emoji. This doesn't even look at the cutting satire of comedies like War Machine, the screwball tinged The House, and the raw and visceral laughs in a movie like Girls Trip or Rough Night.
What makes a movie really funny? Why does it seem like comedies are those movies that we keep going back to again and again? The answer may be in the fact that ultimately, as moviegoers, we just want to escape. More to the point, sometimes it's just easier to put on a movie and not have to think about anything.
However, comedies, at their best, go deeper than that. They take us places that other films do not. Horror films appeal to our sense of fear and the forbidden. Action films charge us up to experience cinema in a heightened way that most of us will never experience in real life. Comedies are those rare things that allow us to laugh and enjoy OURSELVES. They are accessible in a way that a lot of other moves simply aren't.
So cast aside your worries and anxieties for a few minutes and enjoy this 2017 summer comedy list we compiled with a little help from our friends over at The Numbers. Some of these films might be up your ally. Others might not be. However, like all cinema, comedy is relative and these are all the summer comedies you've got to see!
Folk Hero & Funny Guy (May 12)
With a title like that this movie has to be on your comedy must list, right? Starring Alex Karpovsky (Girls) and Wyatt Russell (Everybody Wants Some), this film follows a successful singer-songwriter who hatches a plan to help his friend's struggling comedy career and broken love life by hiring him as his opening act on his solo tour. As you can guess, hilarity ensues with this mismatched team. While not one of the bigger summer comedies, Folk Hero & Funny Guy is the kind of film that probably won't make too much of a splash in theaters (though it could!). Rather it will see itself flourish in the realm of home entertainment. So, see this 2017 comedy so that you can say you saw it in the theater before everybody else saw it later!
Snatched (May 12)
It's pretty cool that comedy Queen Amy Schumer is teaming up with a comedy Queen from the 1970s, 80s, and 90s Goldie Hawn. And while this film seems like a pretty standard comedy, one gets the sense that Schumer won't be able to not add her special brand of comedy to the mix. The story sees Schumer getting dumped by her boyfriend before heading on a dream vacation. Rather than go alone, she pulls her mother into the fun, they end up in the jungle, and suddenly this is a chick-flick with an edge. The 2017 summer comedies are a nice blend of the sublime and the farcical. Snatched is one of those films that will appeal to multiple demos and should have a lengthy run this summer season.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul (May 19)
On the face of it, Diary of a Wimpy Kid might seem like a straight up kid's film. However, this whimsical tale, based on the supercool tales from Wimpy Kid creator Jeff Kinney, really is for adults and kids. The story this time is that Greg Heffley really wants to attend a video game convention. So, rather than just being direct with his parents, Greg dupes them into thinking he wants to go to his Grandma's 90th birthday. Well, for the venerable Greg Heffley nothing ever goes as planned and that is again the case here. The Diary of a Wimpy Kid movies are a necessary ingredient for any comedic summer. With their nods to both the past and present, these films are just as cool as their main character thinks they are.
Baywatch (May 26)
Alright...There are movies that are trying to be something and there are movies that don't care what they are. Baywatch seems to be both and this 2017 summer comedy appears like its fitting quite well into both camps. Baywatch follows lifeguard Mitch Buchanan (Dwayne Johnson) as he butts heads with brash new recruit Matt Brody (Zac Efron). However, the beach is the top priority and these two have to band together to stop a criminal plot that threatens the Bay! For all intents and purposes, this film could very well be an action/comedy. With all the explosions, hotties, and cool beach scenes being thrown around in the trailers, something tells us that this won't be our first trip to the Bay!
War Machine (May 26)
Netflix starts the summer right with this "absurdist war story" that stars none other than Brad Pitt. Written by David Michod this film is a darkly comic look at war and all the various factors that go into its presentation. Brad Pitt plays General Glen McMahon. He is a successful four-star general who rushes in to command NATO forces in Afghanistan. However, war coverage is different now and McMahon ends up tangling with a journalist who plays just as hard as he does. At a time when the US is flexing its muscles abroad in Syria and possibly even North Korea (heck, we might even be beefing with Russia), War Machine is an important film. With its up to date, 2017 comedy outlook, and it's ability to be seen on Netflix's ubiquitous streaming platform, something tells me that War Machine might just be the most seen comedy this summer.
Captain Underpants (June 2)
So perfect is Captain Underpants as a title that, pun intended, it actually reeks of comedy. This film follows George and Harold. They are pranksters of the highest order. Well, they obviously fall under the radar of their principal. Rather than confronting him, they actually turn him into a not-so-smart superhero named Captain Underpants. With a cast that includes Jordan Peele, Kevin Hart, Kristen Schaal, and Ed Helms (among others) providing the voices, Captain Underpants looks to be a gleefully rich 2017 summer comedy. Giving adults and kids something they both can latch onto, might this movie be the 2017 summer movie season's biggest family bonding experience?
3 Idiots (June 2)
3 Idiots follows two nerdy friends and their arch rival from college who go in search of a long lost buddy who disappeared on graduation day. The movie is remake of the 2009 Bollywood film starring Indian superstar Aamir Khan. It will be filled with rude humor and strong language, and should appeal to anyone who loves slapstick and teen humor.
Cars 3 (June 16)
After the not so great Cars 2, this Pixar franchise is due for a comeback. And rather than go for a story with international intrigue, Cars 3 instead heads home and goes for laughs and heart. As this formula worked so well for the first movie, the story this time sees Lightning McQueen trying to prove to a new generation of racers that he's still the best race car in the world. What made the first Cars so special was how it melded a truly human story into the animated world of automobiles. At the same time, it was filled with laughs so it had something for adults, kids and everybody else in between. So what better way for the Summer 2017 comedy movie season to kick into high gear than with Cars 3? A fun movie that shows you're never too old unless you believe you are.
Rough Night (June 16)
The logline for this 2017 Summer movie comedy is this: A male stripper ends up dead at a Miami beach house during a bachelorette party weekend. Considering that the comedically underrated Scarlett Johansson is starring (remember how funny she was in Ghost World?), and add the likes of Zoe Kravitz and Saturday Night Live's Kate McKinnon, and you have a comedic film of the highest order. The big question is... is this comedy going to be Weekend at Bernies or will it be darker? Whatever Rough Night ends up being, something tells me it is going to fill theaters with copious amounts of joy and funny.
The Big Sick (June 23)
Bickering parents and a serious health scare threaten the budding relationship between a Pakistani stand-up comic (Kumail Nanjiani) and his American girlfriend (Zoe Kazan). This true-life tale from Nanjiani, which chronicles his own relationship woes, has been earning raves on the festival circuit. And it should prove to be a big hit amongst the rom-com crowd looking for something new and different.
Baby Driver (June 28)
How great is it to see Jamie Foxx in a funny, edgy role again? That character in his acting repertoire seemed to be kinda missing until Horrible Bosses resurrected it. And how about Kevin Spacey playing the brains behind a heist that seems destined not to work out? That type of role just seems made for him. Add to this that Ansel Elgort (The Fault In Our Stars) seems to be channeling Ryan Gosling (with a wink and a nod), and you have a film that seems destined for comedy gold. This says nothing of Lily James, Jon Hamm or the fact that Flea (yes, Mike B the Flea) is also banging around in this film. Baby Driver is listed as an action, crime, thriller but it might just be, dollar for dollar, the funniest film of the 2017 summer comedies.
The House (June 30)
Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler play a married couple who have to start an illegal casino in their home after they blow through their daughter's college fund. Do we need to say anymore? Just look at the one-sheet for this movie and it is practically bursting with laughter. Poehler and Ferrell looking like something plucked off the Las Vegas strip practically guarantees this films box office chances. There are sure things and then there are SURE things. The House is the kind of movie that you never want to bet against.
Girls Trip (July 21)
Four lifelong friends set off for the trip of a lifetime to New Orleans that quickly turns into the party of the century. With a cast of funny ladies like Jada Pinkett Smith, Queen Latifah, Regina Hall and more, it's nice to that studios aren't just making these outrageous party movies for young people. Also, it's nice to see this movie from not only an African American perspective, but a woman's perspective. Sure, the proceedings are generally going to be of the outrageous variety, but that doesn't mean that there won't be moments that are filled with heart and true emotion. As far as the 2017 summer comedy season is concerned, Girls Trip is the kind of film that fits in perfectly.
The Emoji Movie (July 28)
On the face of it, a movie about emojis probably doesn't seem like it is going to have a great deal to offer. However, you have to love Sony's take on this thing. Basically, Gene (T.J. Miller) simply wants to have a normal life. The problem is that he is an emoji who has multiple expressions. With a cast that includes Patrick Stewart (as the voice of poop), James Corden (as the voice of Hi-5) and the great Stephen Wright, among many others, but there's a reason they put his character (Mel-Meh) in the commercial. They are really coming at this whole emoji thing from an adult perspective it seems. Yes, this is a family film, but who says family films can't be part of the 2017 Summer Comedy season? Nobody, that's who! And The Emoji Movie is taking its rightful place on this list.
The Nut Job 2 (August 11)
The Nut Job 2 picks up precisely where the first Nut Job film left off. This movie sees Surly and his friends trying to stop Oakton City's mayor from destroying their home. What does this nefarious neighbor wish to do? He wants to bring in a really bad amusement park! With a cast that features Will Arnett, Katherine Heigl, Maya Rudolph, Jackie Chan and others, The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature is the kind of film for which the summer comedy season was made. With tremendous animation, whip-smart writing, and spot on delivery, this film will no doubt have parents smiling, kids laughing and a long, long, long life at the summer box office.
Logan Lucky (August 18)
The Logans are a hardscrabble family from the hills of West Virginia, and their clan has been famous for its bad luck for nearly 90 years. But the conniving Jimmy Logan (Channing Tatum) decides its time to turn the family's luck around, and with a little help from his friends, the Redneck Robbers, he plans to steal $14 million from the Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Patti Cake$ (August 18)
Aspiring rapper Patricia Dombrowski, aka Patti Cake$, is fighting an unlikely quest for glory in her downtrodden hometown where her life is falling apart. Patti tries to reach the big time in the hip-hop scene with original and affecting music. Cheered on by her grandmother and only friends, Jheri and Basterd, Patti also shoulders her mother's heartaches and misfortunes.