When looking at comedy as an entire genre, dark comedy is probably the most evolved and mature sub-genre. With no forced jokes or slapstick comedy, dark comedies are anything but clichéd plots.
Dark comedy is a genre of film that essentially deals with a dark theme, like war, horror, crime or even death and gives a comic spin to it. Needless to say, it’s not a genre for everyone and which is why this genre still remains under explored. But we are here to list out the gems of this genre in this edition across many languages and look at the best movies.
Best dark comedies to watch
What We Do In The Shadows
A vampire comedy. If that’s not enough to get you hooked, the brilliant cast definitely will. Directed by Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement, the movie stars these two, along with Jonathan Brugh, Ben Fransham, Cori Gonzalez-Macuer, Stu Rutherford, and Jackie van Beek. The film’s plot revolves around a bunch of vampires who have come to live together and try to cope up with the changing times. There are zombies and werewolves too in this unique dark comedy and is sure to tickle your funny bone.
An Anurag Basu masterpiece brought to life by a brilliant cast, Ludo is one the best dark comedies of Bollywood. In the film, a bunch of lives get intertwined in a comedy of errors when a gangster commits a grizzly double murder. Leading to a chain of events, the film is a situational comedy that is a bit of everything- gangster drama, love story, a heartwarming story of a man and a kid. The film doesn’t fit in any one box and that is what makes its comedy such gold.
A dark comedy full of abuses and smelly jokes, Delhi Belly caused quite the stir when it released back in 2011 and landed in one controversy after the other. Ahead of its time, Delhi Belly was about a gangster drama gone wrong. Three roommates who are desperately trying to make a name for themselves land in trouble when they lose a valuable artefact belonging to a powerful mafia. Brilliant writing and effortless comic timing made the film what it is, with performances so on point that this movie will go down in history as Bollywood’s attempt in doing something out-of-the-box.
Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!
Along with Abhay Deol at his best, this movie had a stellar cast, featuring Paresh Rawal, Neetu Chandra, Manu Rishi, Richa Chadda, Manjot Singh and Archana Puran Singh. The movie inspired by the real-life story of Devinder Singh alias Bunty, a super-chor, originally from Vikaspuri, Delhi, who became famous for his robberies. Belonging to a poor, dysfunctional family from suburban West Delhi, Bunty grew up to be a charismatic and fearless man who robs the rich in all major cities of India, often out of fun.
One of the finest works of Irrfan Khan, Blackmail is a highly underrated dark comedy that you need to add to your watchlist today. Directed by Abhinay Deo, this movie tells the story of Dev Kaushal, played by Irrfan Khan, a middle-aged man who is stuck in a typical sales job, leading a monotonous life. One day, he finds out that his wife, played by Kirti Kulhari, is cheating on him. But the twist in the tale happens when he decides to take revenge rather than showing his outburst. As fate would have it, things don’t go as planned. This film will take its time to grow on you and you will find yourself highly invested in this deadly comedy of errors.
This movie takes you inside the mind of a violent narcissist, who is obsessed with his own self-image. This character, Patrick Bateman, thrives on his own perfection and power over himself, but when that search for power manifests over others, that is when the story takes a much darker turn. At the heart of it, this film is a dark comedy that hilariously dissects the narcissism of the ’80s.
Death At A Funeral
For all fans of the dark comedy genre, a funeral is the perfect premise for a dark joke because nothing’s more extreme than death. This movie does justice to that premise as it introduces us to a madhouse gathering at a funeral. The deceased’s son and the guests end up in a series of mishaps and accidents and ruin the final goodbye. This all leads to the most controversial day in the dysfunctional family’s history, only to uncover a big truth at the end of it.
One of the most famous movies of director Tim Burton, Beetlejuice is a dark comedy that’s full of dark undertones. As if killing the young protagonists by hurling them off a bridge wasn’t morbid enough, the film then follows them into the world of the dead to see their decaying souls looking for purpose and direction. Even with a plot as dark as this, Burton manages to make it hilarious. Michael Keaton as Beetlejuice is the best part about this film. A demon with style, swag and a spinning head, he brings great comedy to this dark film.