Five Movies You Need to See… When You Just Need to Shut Off and Laugh

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It’s time for as lighthearted a post as I can write. Day to day life isn’t always easy. And sometimes we all just need to shut off our minds for a couple of hours, grab some popcorn, and simply laugh a whole lot.

This is a list of five comedy movies I love. In my mind, they are timeless comedic classics. They are all extremely quotable and memorable.

When you need a little innocent pick-me-up, and you’re looking to try something different, you can’t go wrong with a solid comedy to make everything right.

In no particular order, here are five recommendations for hilarious movies that could brighten up almost any day.

My Blue Heaven (1990)

One of the most quotable movies ever created is for some reason forgotten by so many. This classic has oddly faded into obscurity, but it should make a comeback with a vengeance.

Steve Martin plays a gangster in the witness protection program, in which a hardened Italian criminal must somehow learn to live the smalltime life in the middle of nowhere. As you can imagine, this scenario provides countless opportunities for comedic fodder.

Steve Martin and Rick Moranis are the perfect duo, and their fantastic performances result in endless unforgettable moments. (Apparently they’ve been in three movies together. I’ve never seen Parenthood (1989), but Little Shop of Horrors (1986) is amazing. Did you know that there are two different versions of the ending?)

With My Blue Heaven, you’ll find yourself grabbing moments from the movie and making them a permanent part of your life and speech. For example, I can’t go to the grocery story with my wife without reenacting this hilarious moment:

And in case you’re wondering, that superb pick-up line works just as well for me as did for Steve Martin.

So grab My Blue Heaven. Heck, grab 25 copies… ya know… in case you want to watch it more than once.

Capiche?

Clerks (1994)

Sadly, the only movie on this list that might not hold up anymore. I remember seeing Clerks in the theaters and loving it so much I went back to see it again. But you kids these days just can’t seem to handle the black and white!

Clerks is about a couple of nobodies in New Jersey who are working at a convenience store and an old school video shop. They have several adventures along the way and a handful of mishaps with customers.

The humor is not for everyone, but it certainly was for me. I still laugh when I picture Dante talking about the customers who search for the milk that will never expire. Or the countless customers asking if his store is open. Or pretty much anything Randal does.

If you want a nice, silly belly laugh, and pretty much a documentary of Jersey life, Clerks is the way to go. And it’s an apt introduction to the world of Kevin Smith movies, which include other classics like Mallrats (1995) and Dogma (1999).

37!

Office Space (1999)

Everything from the hysterical dialogue to just about the best soundtrack you’ll find in any movie.

Follow the trials and tribulations of a nerdy computer programmer whose life is basically meaningless, until he figures out a really unique way to turn everything around.

And before you know it, this badass conquers his workplace, replete with the amazing gangster rap you might be expecting. If you’ve worked for even a short period in any office, you will love Office Space, and everything from the overbearing bosses dwelling upon the most minute details to the rage against the copy machine.

And you will certainly want to take yourself over to the first occupational hypnotherapist you can find and set fire to your T.P.S. Report cover sheets. Because that’s when things start to get real!

Airplane (1980)

If you have not seen Airplane, you are under-qualified to discuss comedy films. Every parody film that has come out since Airplane, strives to create a level of perfect silliness on par with this masterpiece.

Whether it’s someone beating up airport solicitors, old women speaking Jive, or very unique drinking problems, the humor in Airplane is timeless.

This movie even gave birth to some important moments that effect my life more often than I or anyone would like to admit. Ever have one of those times when you’re trapped in a lecture or speech you are just praying will end already? You may even get to the point where you’d rather commit hara-kiri than listen for even one more minute?

I call those “Airplane moments”, after the many characters who’d rather take their own lives than listen to our protagonist tell his story anymore.

Also, keep your eyes open for my son’s absolute favorite answer to the question, “How do you take your coffee?”

Airplane throws everything at you to brings tears of laughter to even the toughest eyes.

So I Married an Axe Murderer (1993)

Mike Myers at his best. This movie has everything from beat poetry to thick Scottish accents to a cameo from the greatest living comedian, Stephen Wright.

So I Married an Axe Murderer has fallen into a bit of obscurity for reasons I’ll never understand. Usually I get an odd stare from most folk just by mentioning its name.

Throughout this hysterical movie, follow all the crazy mishaps of Charlie MacKenzie as it slowly becomes clear to him that his new main squeeze might be a bit more than he expected. (I mean, who hasn’t slowly discovered they might be in a relationship with a psychopath?)

Did you know that So I Married an Axe Murderer is the most popular movie ever created that uses the phrase “hard hearted harbinger of haggis”?

For those who need a good laugh and choose to listen to me and grab one of these movies… you’re welcome!

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