BBC, Film Critics Declare ‘Some Like It Hot’ The Best Comedy of All Time

Billy Wilder's crossdressing rom-com tops the list of 100 classic comedies, chosen by film critics around the world.

William Bibbianiby William Bibbiani

We all have our favorite comedies, but most people don’t actively search through over 100 years of motion pictures to try watch all of the classics, as well as the unsung cult favorites, and everything in between. That’s why the latest poll from the BBC, which collected the opinions of 253 critics from 52 countries, is such an interesting and noteworthy compendium of comedies. If that many critics think these films are the funniest ever made, then those films are – if nothing else – definitely worth checking out.

The #1 film on the BBC list is something of a no-brainer. Billy Wilder’s cross-dressing romantic comedy Some Like It Hot – starring Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis as musicians witness a mob assassination and hide out by pretending to be women in a band – tops the list, as it often does in lists like these. The quotable dialogue, note-perfect performances and one of the best endings ever filmed almost guarantees its continued reputation as the best comedy of all time.

Rounding out the top ten are Stanley Kubrick’s political comedy Dr. Strangelove (#2), Woody Allen’s Oscar-winning rom-com Annie Hall (#3), Harold Ramis’s high-concept Groundhog Day (#4), the Marx Bros.’ wackiest film Duck Soup (#5), Monty Python’s scathing historical satire Life of Brian (#6), the spoofiest spoof film ever Airplane! (#7), Jacques Tati’s classy Playtime (#8), the heavy metal mockumentary This Is Spinal Tap (#9), and Buster Keaton’s stunt-filled The General (#10).

Given the individuals polled it makes sense that the list skews older, with only twelve films from the 21st century making the cut: Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (#33), Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (#41), Best In Show (#55), Mean Girls (#57), Shaun of the Dead (#60), Team America: World Police (#61), Step Brothers (#64), Hot Fuzz (#66), In the Loop (#70), The Royal Tenenbaums (#71), Zoolander (#88), and The Hangover (#98).

Check out BBC’s complete list of the best comedies ever made, and see how it compares to our own list of The 50 Funniest Comedies Ever, below.

CraveOnline Picks The Top 50 Funniest Comedies of All Time:

Top Photo: United Artists

William Bibbiani (everyone calls him ‘Bibbs’) is Crave’s film content editor and critic. You can hear him every week on Canceled Too Soon and watch him on the weekly YouTube series What the Flick. Follow his rantings on Twitter at @WilliamBibbiani.