Buddy movies have been around in the US almost as long as cinema itself. This particular genre is a lot more prevalent in the Hollywood film industry than any other Western countries. People seem to enjoy watching unexpected pairings on screen going on adventures or trying to work together as a team despite their contrasting differences.
Whether it’s the mix of different personalities or different ethnic backgrounds altogether, the buddy genre creates a unique Platonic atmosphere, where we get to focus on the friendship rather than the romance that’s so often portrayed in Western media. Here is our pick of nine best buddy comedies of all time.
9 Booksmart (2019)
For her feature directorial debut, Olivia Wilde directed the buddy comedy Booksmart. Played by Beanie Feldstein and Kaitlyn Dever, the movie focuses on two high school best friends who decide to break the rules for the first time during the last day of their senior year. The film received high critical appraisal for both the acting performances and Wilde’s directorial work. Not only does the movie beautifully portray a friendship between two young women, but as women you can find relatability in it, which is definitely due to the fact that it’s directed by a woman. It took all the usual clichés and broke them apart.
8 Sherlock Holmes (2009)
Set in 1890, Sherlock Holmes tells the story of the lead character of the same name and his companion and colleague Dr. John Watson, as they try to figure out the supposed supernatural threat upon Britain. Although the movie’s classified as a period mystery film, what better way to execute the buddy genre than with an eccentric detective and his sidekick who keeps up with his narcissism? Robert Downey Jr. himself is set to produce the HBO spin-off series as a continuation of the Guy Ritchie’s version. The release date keeps getting postponed, per Deadlineso we really hope to see the two back in action as soon as possible.
7 Thelma and Louise (1991)
The landmark of feminist movies, Thelma and Louise is a buddy road trip film, telling the story of two best friends, played by Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon, who decide to go on a road trip together, but get tangled in unexpected circumstances, which ends up with them getting chased by the police. The movie was directed by Ridley Scott, who ended up getting nominated for Best Director at the Academy Awards. Many consider this movie to be queer, arguing that Thelma and Louise were best friends in love who realized it too late. Watch for yourself to decide.
6 Shut Up! (2003)
Shut Up! or Ruby & Quentin is a French buddy crime comedy following the unique encounter of a slow-witted thief Quentin and a henchman Ruby, who manage to escape together. No matter how hard he tries, Ruby is unable to shake Quentin off of his back, and they end up forming a once-in-a-lifetime bond. The main characters are played by two of the most well-known French actors, Jean Reno and Gérard Depardieu. In our humble opinion, it’s a shocker the movie is spoken about so little, considering how great it is.
5 Rush Hour (1998)
Everyone must have heard of or seen Rush Hour, right? Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan play a duo of mismatched police officers who are tasked with rescuing a Chinese diplomat’s daughter after she is abducted. The film was a commercial success, with over $ 244 million grossed worldwide and rightfully so. The movie single-handedly proves that action-comedy is one of the best genres to ever exist. If you’re interested in having a Rush Hour marathon, all the three movies are available to stream on Hulu.
4 The Heat (2013)
Directed by Paul Feig, The Heat is a buddy cop comedy starring Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy as an FBI Special Agent and a Boston police officer who teamed up to take down a Boston mob. Although the plot can be quite predictable, both of the women prove that they are extremely versatile actresses. Bullock and McCarthy play off of each other in their own respective amusing ways. Despite the mixed reviews, the movie was a box office hit with over $ 229 million worldwide.
3 Dumb and Dumber (1994)
Certainly, we can not forget to include Dumb and Dumber in our buddy comedy list. Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels play two slow-witted best friends Harry and Lloyd, who, though well-meaning, always end up getting into trouble. The first installment of the franchise follows the two as they set out on a cross-country roadt rip to return an abandoned suitcase to its owner, not knowing it was left there as ransom. The movie helped the Furelly brothers, who directed and wrote the movie, start their careers, as well as establish Carrey and Daniels as talented comedic actors.
2 Men in Black (1997)
Men in Black stars Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith as two agents of a secret organization that makes sure to hide the existence of extraterrestrial creatures on planet Earth from ordinary humans. The movie received high critical appraisal for the script, the pacing, and the actors’ performances. Jones as the boss trains a new guy, Smith, in interplanetary relations for two days, and after they successfully fulfill the mission, he basically wipes his own memory and lets him deal with everything. Many argue that Men In Black would be the perfect addition to the MCU – would you agree?
1 The Intern (2015)
Last but not least, we have the buddy drama-comedy starring Anne Hathaway as a workaholic CEO and Robert De Niro as a retiree widower, who form an unexpected friendship after he gets hired at her fashion company. After becoming her personal assistant, Ben (De Niro) shows his boss the virtue of time and teaches her many other life lessons. The movie is a cinematic masterpiece, which is also completely underrated. If a movie was a warm hug, it would be this one. The Intern grossed over $ 194.6 million worldwide.