Are These the Best American Comedies?


There is a list of movies that you must watch at least once in a lifetime. 

Everyone has their “holy” list dictated by personal tastes and perspectives. However, one of the first entries on the list of most Americans belongs to this comedy category: either “Step Brothers” or “The Hangover.”

For the most inexperienced, here’s a quick summary; Stepbrothers is a comedy from 2008 that talks about two 40 years old “big baby” men, Dale and Brennan, who suddenly become stepbrothers between fight and hilarious scenes.

“The Hangover” is the storytelling of a group of friends in Las Vegas who, after spending a night celebrating, partying, and doing crazy stuff, wake up the following day with a terrible hangover and the harsh consequences of what they did.

Besides the fact that every teenager and many adults in the United States knows these two movies, they don’t have anything in common and are two different styles of comedies.

“The Hangover has more of a plot and is funny because comical things happen throughout the course of the story,” LHS sophomore Ezra Benson said, comparing the two comedies. “While in “Stepbrothers” there isn’t very a plot, but it’s hilarious the whole time.”

On top of Benson’s list, there surely is “Stepbrothers” which has accompanied him and made him smile for most of his life. He watched it for the first time when he was just in third grade and remembered that he and his friend LHS sophomore Haydon Benson had never laughed so much in all their young lives. He is in tenth grade now and has watched it at least 500 times since then.

Talking with students around LHS, these two movies score an average of eight out of ten. The majority of the students genuinely enjoy watching them because they find their humor relatable and the actors prepared and fit in their roles. However, these two comedies are inappropriate and raunchy, therefore not suitable for all ages or to watch with the family.

“They are two comedies out of the ordinary,” sophomore Gavin Chatfield said. “I wouldn’t say that they are stupid, but they show things against the norm and stuff you wouldn’t hear from a common person. That is what makes them so funny.” 

Chatfield thinks that in “Step Brothers” there is also a lesson to learn: bonding with step-siblings and accepting new members in the family can be hard at the beginning, but it’s just a matter of time and getting to know each other. In his personal experience, they become like siblings after a while, and now he has long-life friends.

In Avery Gifford’s opinion, in “The Hangover” as well teenagers can understand through a funny comedy that, many times, drinking leads you to do stupid things and always has tough consequences.

I didn’t know these two movies before coming to the United States, so I watched them only recently under friends’ advice.

Their stories are original and built to be funny; many scenes are ingenious, like when Brennan and Dale want to build bunk beds in “Step Brothers,” or the main characters find a tiger in the bathroom in “Hangover”. However, they made me smile rather than laugh out loud. 

I was expecting something more hilarious, but then I realized that humorism changes in each country, and it’s very interesting to observe what make people laugh in a different part of the world. In Italy, we would call these types of movies “Americanate,” a word that can describe American comedy based on simple jokes that are easy to understand and situations so absurd and embarrassing to make you laugh. While Italian humorism is more connected to traditions, politics, and the culture in general of our country and, therefore hard to understand internationally.

“Step Brothers” and “Hangover” are overall two good movies that I’m sure everyone should at least try to watch.