POSTED June 22 2012

What movie always makes you laugh?

I  prescribe Nora Ephron’s advice that “When your children are teenagers, it’s important to have a dog so that someone in the house is happy to see you.” Likewise wholeheartedly, I prescribe the use of movies as vibe-changers,  mood elevators, mother’s-little-helpers. So I ask, what movie always makes you (and your teenagers) laugh?

What’s worked exceptionally well lately for us are the Marc Lawrence-scripted Miss Congeniality films, slapstick studded with sharp observations about the inherent conflicts of professionalism and femininity. These are the films in which the essentially genderless Sandra Bullock showed America, to great comic effect, how gender, specifically femininity, is constructed. Regina King joined her in the sequel and the dynamic between the “femme” post-pageant Bullock and “butch” King is a stitch, particularly when they pose as female impersonators in a Las Vegas drag club.

Do you have a go-to movie pick-me-up that dependably makes you laugh? What and why?


  1. Adam B. says:

    Airplane! and Top Secret, or Blazing Saddles.

  2. Stephen M. Silverman says:

    The Bank Dick; Duck Soup; It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World; Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines; His Girl Friday; bits of the Pink Panther; The Hangover; Some Like It Hot; Annie Hall; Twentieth Century

  3. Caroline Piven says:

    The Big Lebowski, Animal House, Bringing Up Baby, School for Scoundrels, A Fish Called Wanda and, if features on public television count, Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner in the 2000 year-old man.

  4. Too many to mention. Off the top of my head: Dr. Strangelove, Network, Sunset Blvd., Singin’ in the Rain, His Girl Friday, Duck Soup, The General, Modern Times, Annie Hall, Airplane!, All About Eve, Fight Club, A Face in the Crowd, The Apartment, Pulp Fiction, Broadcast News, Tootsie, Bringing Up Baby, MASH, After Hours, The Player, Back to the Future, Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, Flirting With Disaster and many more.

  5. Miz Val says:

    It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, The Hangover,Steel Magnolias,Trading Places,Terms of Endearment,Tootsie,MASH,Airplane,Blazing Saddles, Beverly Hills Cop,After Hours,The Devil Wears Prada ,Detroit Rock City, Rush Hour, Thst Thing You Do,Bridesmaids ,Can’t Hardlly Wait,Bandslam,Never Been Kissed,Miss Congeniality

  6. Miz Val says:

    I thought of another one .My Big Fat Greek Wedding

  7. wolynski says:

    Some Like It Hot, M.Hulot’s Holidays, Laurel & Hardy, Auntie Mame, The Clerks 2, A New Leaf, The Belles Of St Trinians, The Visitors (the original French one), Personal Services, The Producers, To Be Or Not To Be (Jack Benny), Born Yesterday

  8. mark s. says:

    Sylvia Miles’s over-the-hill, brass-and-sass Cass, her call girl in ‘Midnight Cowboy’. “28 years old! You heard it!” said the hooker, who’s gotta be pushing 50.

  9. matilda says:

    It’s Complicated- with Meryl Streep hilarious especially for those divorced mothers!

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