Did you know that in addition to award winning series, Netflix has also made a plethora of original movies, many of which are highly acclaimed?
This includes comedy. Netflix has attracted some of comedy’s most celebrated and raw talent. Bob Odenkirk, Bill Murray, Paul Reubens, Adam Sandler and Jessica Williams have all starred in Netflix comedy films – to name just a few.
Here we take a look at five of the best original Netflix comedies available to stream right now.
The Incredible Jessica James
Up and coming actress, comedian and The Daily Show senior correspondent Jessica Williams stars in Netflix’s latest comedy movie The Incredible Jessica James. Not to be confused with the hit series Marvel’s Jessica Jones, you won’t see any superheroes here but instead enjoy a poignantly funny look at a young aspiring playwright as she struggles to cope after a recent break-up.
On the rebound, she meets Boone played by Chris O’Dowd and they embark on a no-strings-attached relationship. Critics have described Jessica Williams performance as one of “much wit and charm” and “a charismatic avatar for a certain kind of city-dwelling, creative 20-something”.
Ever wonder just who’s under the mascot costume at sports games? Or why on earth anyone would want the job? These questions and more are explored in Netflix’s hilarious mockumentary Mascots. Created by Christopher Guest, whose no stranger to the mockumentary format (he also wrote and directed Best In Show, A Mighty Wind and Waiting For Guffman), Mascots takes a tongue in cheek look as sports mascots from across the US compete to win the World Mascot Association championship’s Gold Fluffy Award.
Well-known stars include Guest himself, Jane Lynch, Jennifer Coolidge, Park Posey and Fred Willard all feature. Ridiculous and very funny, like so many of Guest’s films, Mascots celebrates the misfit and, as its tagline says, takes the mascots “from the sidelines to the spotlight”.
You probably recognise this movie’s star Bob Odenkirk as Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad and its spinoff Better Call Saul. In Girlfriend’s Day Odenkirk flexes his comedy muscles once again in this quirky Netflix Original.
Odenkirk plays romance writer Ray, in a city where his work was once heralded but now greeting card writers are the new local celebrities. In a bid to reclaim his dwindling fame, Ray tries to design the best greeting card for a newly declared holiday: Girlfriend’s Day. But as competition between the local writers heats up, a web of deceit, conflict and even murder ensues.
Strange? Yes. Surprisingly funny? Also yes. While it may sound a tad peculiar, Girlfriend’s Day is a delightfully wacky and rather underrated Netflix film.
When Netflix launched back in 1997, who could have imagined that in 20 years’ time it would be producing its own movie starring one of the biggest movie stars in the world both back then and now – Brad Pitt?
But War Machine is exactly that, a big budget war comedy movie starring Pitt as charismatic four-star general Glenn McMahon who is tasked with commanding NATO forces in Afghanistan and is blindsided by a journalist’s exposé efforts.
Praised for its satirical look at America’s involvement in Afghanistan and for Pitt’s solid performance, the movie offers a fictionalised version of the events that are described in the non-fiction book The Operators: The Wild & Terrifying Inside Story of America’s War in Afghanistan by Michael Hastings, and of Army General Stanley McChrystal actions in particular.
A Very Murray Christmas
Bill Murray is the star of so many comedic classics, including Groundhog Day, What About Bob?, Caddyshack and Lost In Translation. So it seems only fitting that he should have a Netflix Christmas-themed movie dedicated entirely to him.
In A Very Murray Christmas Bill is distraught when he has to cancel his televised Christmas special at the Carlyle Hotel in Manhattan due to bad winter weather. However, his famous friends and fellow hotel guests rally round to make it a Christmas celebration he’ll surely never forget. Co-written by Murray himself and directed by Sofia Coppola, guest stars include Michael Cera, George Clooney, Miley Cyrus, Rashida Jones, Maya Rudolph and Chris Rock.