Making audiences afraid is difficult, as is making them laugh. The best funny horror movies of the 2010s do both. Laughter and fear are very intense responses. We experience them because something triggers a strong emotional reaction. Achieving both requires a deft touch as they're diametrically opposed. Fear is generally considered an unpleasant sensation and laughter a highly desirable one.
Scary comedy movies from the 2010s run a wide gamut. Some are primarily horror flicks that offer up a couple stellar moments of humor to lighten the mood. Others are designed to be funny through the way they play with familiar horror elements. Still others are harder to categorize. Cinematic horror can occasionally be so twisted that it takes on the form of dark comedy. Several entries on this list may not seem funny until you know where, specifically, to look for the wicked laughs. Regardless, the following titles blend humor with horror in various ways, providing viewers with the opportunity to giggle and get chills simultaneously.
Which scary comedy movies from the 2010s give you the biggest rush? Vote for the ones you think are the best of the decade.
More than one critic has referred to Happy Death Day as "Groundhog Day meets Friday the 13th." It's an apt description. Jessica Rothe plays Tree Gelbman, a college student who is slain by a masked psycho on her birthday. Rather than moving on to the Great Beyond, she's forced to repeat her last day until she can figure out who wants her eliminated.
Plenty of jump scares can be found in Happy Death Day, but the movie also has a sense of humor about itself. Tree's mounting frustration over having to live out her painful last day again and again is played for intermittent laughs. Rothe gives a pitch-perfect comedic performance, making the character's agitation hilariously amusing.
The Cabin in the Woods pulls off the unlikely feat of being both a really good horror movie and a really good spoof of horror movies at the same time. A group of friends ventures to the title location for what they think will be a weekend of fun. Instead, they find out the area is controlled by a shadowy agency that can, and does, unleash monsters of all sorts on them.
The more you know about fright flicks, the funnier The Cabin in the Woods is. It intentionally takes age-old horror cliches and uses them in new ways in order to point out just how overplayed those cliches are. Observant viewers will giggle at all the visual references to the genre scattered throughout. There are evil clowns, masked psychos, werewolves, zombies, and more. If it's ever been in a horror movie, it's satirized here.
What We Do in the Shadows follows a group of four roommate vampires trying to make sense of life in the modern world while being filmed by a documentary crew. When you're hundreds, or even thousands, of years old, the current era can be a fairly perplexing place, especially when it comes to technology and dating. One of the vampires even claims to be "the main guy in Twilight" to pick up women.
The movie is from Flight of the Conchords star Jemaine Clement and Jojo Rabbit director Taika Waititi. They have fun mixing traditional vampire elements, including drinking the blood of humans, with modern phenomena, such as reality television. The Philadelphia Inquirer nailed it when they dubbed What We Do in the Shadows "a sanguine comedy that feels more than a bit like a Christopher Guest farce or an elaborate Monty Python sketch."
Krampus is based on the old legend of the horned, hoofed creature that comes around to punish poorly behaved children at Christmastime. Respectively, Adam Scott and Toni Collette are Tom and Sarah, a married couple who have to deal with the titular monster, among other things, after their son inadvertently summons it.
Scenes with the actual Krampus are staged for scares. Other sequences offer up a playful sense of Yuletide horror. Tom, Sarah, and their family face nasty elves, wicked teddy bears, and an army of bloodthirsty gingerbread men. The movie offers a spooky atmosphere to go along with its holiday-themed mischief.