Entertainment

The Best Comedy Movies of the 1970s 

Ranker Film
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Updated October 11, 2019 12.6k votes 1k voters 58.3k views 202 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite film comedies that were released in the 1970s.

In the '70s, comedy movies were dominated by two comedic heavyweights: Woody Allen and Mel Brooks They still left room for plenty of classic comedies like The Rocky Horror Picture Show and National Lampoon's Animal House, though. A lot of '70s comedies like The Bad News Bears were so great that they ended up being remade decades later. With all of these choices, what do you think are the top 1970s comedy movies? Vote up your favorites and vote down those that just aren't as funny. 

A look at this list of 1970s comedies makes it clear that Woody Allen and Mel Brooks were in their prime during this era. Allen delivered with the celebrated Annie Hall, Manhattan, and Sleeper, among others, while Brooks turned in two beloved '70s comedy films with Blazing Saddles and Young Frankenstein. That said, it could be argued that the funniest '70s films were, in fact, cult hits like The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Cheech and Chong's Up in Smoke, and Monty Python and the Holy Grail

This '70s comedy movies list is also filled with stellar movies that were then remade into not-so-stellar reboots years later. You have The In-Laws, The Bad News Bears, The Out-of-Towners, Freaky Friday, and The Heartbreak Kid. Do you think any of these movies deserves to be considered one of the best '70s comedy movies or did the remakes taint the originals? 

You know it was a good decade for comedy because even a merely decent 1970s comedy like Meatballs still featured the Bill Murray's very first starring role. Have fun and laugh it up while you vote up the top '70s comedy films, and feel free to add any that we may have missed!
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1
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Mel Brooks, Gene Wilder, Anne Bancroft

Released: 1974

Directed by: Mel Brooks

Blazing Saddles is a 1974 satirical Western comedy film directed by Mel Brooks. Starring Cleavon Little and Gene Wilder, the film was written by Brooks, Andrew Bergman, Richard Pryor, Norman ...more

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#35 of 396 The Best Western Movies Ever Made #106 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

2
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Gene Hackman, Mel Brooks, Gene Wilder

Released: 1974

Directed by: Mel Brooks

Young Frankenstein is a 1974 American comedy film directed by Mel Brooks and starring Gene Wilder as the title character, a descendant of the infamous Dr. Victor Frankenstein. The supporting ...more

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#318 of 376 The Best Musical Movies of All Time #6 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

3
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John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle

Released: 1975

Directed by: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones

Monty Python and the Holy Grail is a 1975 British comedy film written and performed by the comedy group of Monty Python, and directed by Gilliam and Jones. It was conceived during the hiatus ...more

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#155 of 376 The Best Musical Movies of All Time #130 of 508 The Best Duos of All Time The Surprisingly Astute Lessons We Can Learn From 'Monty Python and the Holy Grail'

4
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Kevin Bacon, John Belushi, Donald Sutherland

Released: 1978

Directed by: John Landis

National Lampoon's Animal House is a 1978 American comedy film directed by John Landis. The film was a direct spinoff from National Lampoon magazine. It is about a misfit group of fraternity ...more

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#168 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #10 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films Behind The Scenes Stories From 'Animal House' That Are Way More Insane Than The Movie

5
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Steve Martin, Bernadette Peters, Rob Reiner

Released: 1979

Directed by: Carl Reiner

The Jerk is a 1979 American comedy film directed by Carl Reiner and written by Steve Martin, Carl Gottlieb, and Michael Elias. This was Martin's first starring role in a feature film. The film ...more

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#126 of 624 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #423 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #33 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

6
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Sally Field, Burt Reynolds, Jackie Gleason

Released: 1977

Directed by: Hal Needham

Smokey and the Bandit is a 1977 Technicolor American action comedy film starring Burt Reynolds, Sally Field, Jackie Gleason, Jerry Reed, Patrick McCormick, Paul Williams and Mike Henry. It ...more

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#153 of 508 The Best Duos of All Time #200 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

7
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CraigAlarm added Peter Sellers, Christopher Plummer, Herbert Lom

Released: 1975

Directed by: Blake Edwards

The Return of the Pink Panther is the fourth film in The Pink Panther series, released in 1975. The film stars Peter Sellers in the role of Inspector Clouseau, returning to the part for the ...more

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#171 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #109 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

8
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Richard Pryor, Gene Wilder, Ned Beatty

Released: 1976

Directed by: Arthur Hiller

Silver Streak is a 1976 comedy-thriller film about an event on a Los Angeles-to-Chicago train journey. It was directed by Arthur Hiller and stars Gene Wilder, Jill Clayburgh, and Richard Pryor, ...more

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#256 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #216 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time #353 of 460 The Most Quotable Movies of All Time

9
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Ellen Barkin, Cheech Marin, Tommy Chong

Released: 1978

Directed by: Lou Adler, Tommy Chong

Up in Smoke, directed by Lou Adler, is Cheech & Chong's first feature-length film, released in 1978 by Paramount Pictures. It stars Cheech Marin, Tommy Chong, Edie Adams, Strother Martin, ...more

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#99 of 119 The Very Best Movie Franchises #9 of 211 The Best Drug Movies of All Time

10
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Robert Duvall, Donald Sutherland, Elliott Gould

Released: 1970

Directed by: Robert Altman

MASH is a 1970 American satirical black comedy film directed by Robert Altman and written by Ring Lardner, Jr., based on Richard Hooker's novel MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors. The ...more

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#255 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies Dramatic Stories From Behind The Scenes Of ‘M.A.S.H.’listed on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

11
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CraigAlarm added Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Tim Brooke-Taylor

Released: 1971

Directed by: Mel Stuart

Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory is a 1971 musical fantasy film directed by Mel Stuart, and starring Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka. The film, a film adaptation of the 1964 novel Charlie and ...more

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#29 of 624 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #67 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies There's A Theory That 'Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory' Is Actually About A Tormented Killer

12
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George Harrison, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam

Released: 1979

Directed by: Terry Jones

Monty Python's Life of Brian, also known as Life of Brian, is a 1979 British comedy film starring and written by the comedy group Monty Python, and directed by Jones. It tells the story of Brian ...more

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#256 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #39 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #325 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made

13
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CraigAlarm added Cloris Leachman, Madeline Kahn, Dick Van Patten

Released: 1977

Directed by: Mel Brooks

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial High Anxiety is a 1977 comedy film produced and directed by Mel Brooks, who also plays the lead. This is Brooks' first film as a producer and first speaking lead role. Veteran Brooks ensemble ...more

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#616 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #244 of 460 The Most Quotable Movies of All Time

14
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Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw

Released: 1973

Directed by: George Roy Hill

The Sting is a 1973 American caper film set in September 1936, involving a complicated plot by two professional grifters to con a mob boss. The film was directed by George Roy Hill, who had ...more

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#393 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #288 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

15
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Steve Martin, Mel Brooks, Richard Pryor

Released: 1979

Directed by: James Frawley

The Muppet Movie is a 1979 American-British musical road comedy film and the first of a series of live-action feature films starring Jim Henson's Muppets. Directed by James Frawley, the film's ...more

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#77 of 376 The Best Musical Movies of All Time #448 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

16
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Tatum O'Neal, Jackie Earle Haley, Walter Matthau

Released: 1976

Directed by: Michael Ritchie

The Bad News Bears is a 1976 comedy film directed by Michael Ritchie. It stars Walter Matthau and Tatum O'Neal. The film was followed by two sequels, The Bad News Bears in Breaking Training in ...more

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#153 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time #75 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

17
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Clint Eastwood, Donald Sutherland, Don Rickles

Released: 1970

Directed by: Brian G. Hutton

Kelly's Heroes is a 1970 comedy film directed by Brian G. Hutton, about a group of WWII soldiers who go AWOL to rob a bank behind enemy lines. The film stars Clint Eastwood, Telly Savalas, Don ...more

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#42 of 379 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #622 of 722 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked #73 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

18
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CraigAlarm added Julie Andrews, Omar Sharif, Peter Sellers

Released: 1976

Directed by: Blake Edwards

Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial The Pink Panther Strikes Again is the fifth film in The Pink Panther series and picks up where The Return of the Pink Panther leaves off. Released in 1976, Strikes Again is the third entry to ...more
19
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Harrison Ford, Ron Howard, Suzanne Somers

Released: 1973

Directed by: George Lucas

American Graffiti is a 1973 American coming of age comedy-drama film directed and co-written by George Lucas starring Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Paul Le Mat, Harrison Ford, Charles Martin ...more

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#414 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #40 of 217 Musical Movies With the Best Songs #218 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

20
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John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, Stockard Channing

Released: 1978

Directed by: Randal Kleiser

Grease is a 1978 American musical romantic comedy-drama film directed by Randal Kleiser and produced by Paramount Pictures. It is based on Warren Casey and Jim Jacobs' 1971 musical of the same ...more

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#4 of 624 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #2 of 217 Musical Movies With the Best Songs This Disturbing Fan Theory Will Completely Change How You See 'Grease'

21
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Burt Reynolds, Bernadette Peters, Ray Nitschke

Released: 1974

Directed by: Robert Aldrich

The Longest Yard is a 1974 American sports comedy film directed by Robert Aldrich. Written by Tracy Keenan Wynn based on a story by producer Albert S. Ruddy, the film follows inmates at a prison ...more
22
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CraigAlarm added Maggie Smith, Peter Sellers, Alec Guinness

Released: 1976

Directed by: Robert Moore

This film is a 1976 American mystery comedy film with a cast featuring Eileen Brennan, Truman Capote, James Coco, Peter Falk, Alec Guinness, Elsa Lanchester, David Niven, Peter Sellers, Maggie ...more

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#269 of 624 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #789 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #504 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

23
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CraigAlarm added Clint Eastwood, Beverly DAngelo, Ruth Gordon

Released: 1978

Directed by: James Fargo

Every Which Way but Loose is a 1978 American adventure comedy film, released by Warner Brothers, produced by Robert Daley and directed by James Fargo. It stars Clint Eastwood in an ...more

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#260 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time #286 of 460 The Most Quotable Movies of All Time

24
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Paul Newman, M. Emmet Walsh, Swoosie Kurtz

Released: 1977

Directed by: George Roy Hill

Slap Shot is a 1977 comedy film directed by George Roy Hill, written by Nancy Dowd and starring Paul Newman and Michael Ontkean. It depicts a minor league hockey team that resorts to violent ...more

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#831 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #149 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #214 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

25
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Bill Murray, Kristine DeBell, Matt Craven

Released: 1979

Directed by: Ivan Reitman

Meatballs is a 1979 Canadian comedy film directed by Ivan Reitman. It is noted for Bill Murray's first film appearance in a starring role and for launching Reitman into a distinguished career of ...more

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#420 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #172 of 591 The Best '70s Movies