There are spy movies that make you crave for action. And there are also spy movies that give you thrills and suspense, scene after scene after scene. But what about spy movies that also tickle your funny bone?
Yes, there are indeed some best spy movies all around, depending on what you like. But the ones that also make us laugh tend to be more memorable for more audiences. Who doesn’t like a good, hearty laugh? And while we watch action-packed spy adventures, we can also smile and feel light about it.
That’s why there have been some best spy movies that give us this kind of feeling and emotions. And for those of you wondering if ever these kinds of films exist, they do! So see our recommended list of some memorable best spy movies done with a mix of comedy and action.
1. Mr. and Mrs. Smith
What if you don’t know that you’re married to a contract killer whose job is to spy on people, track them, and kill them for money? What’s worse is that both parties in the marriage are not aware that their spouse is such a spy! That’s the entertaining premise of the film Mr. and Mrs. Smith.
Starring Hollywood ex-power couple Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, the 2005 movie is a lighthearted look at domestic life of married spies. But the tension in the film is created by the secret that both spouses keep from each other. While their outside secret life is exciting, their known domestic life is becoming dull and boring for them.
However, many things change when both Mr. and Mrs. Smith discover that their respective partners might indeed be a spy out to kill them! Now this changes the relationship dynamics overnight. And that is why the enjoyable tale belongs here in our list of best spy movies with great humor. Go enjoy it now!
2. Austin Powers
With subtitles like International Man of Mystery or The Spy Who Shagged Me, it’s no doubt that the Austin Powers series of films intend to make us laugh while watching them in action.
It all started in 1997. Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery is a film focusing on a very loud and flamboyantly-dressed spy straight out of the 1960s. The film is obviously a comedic take or spoof of the finesse and charm of James Bond and his spy films.
This one finds Austin Powers, a 1960s agent, cryogenically frozen so that he could return when his evil nemesis returns. And yes, he does return, in the 1990s. So they unfreeze Austin Powers, too, in the process orienting him on what happened on earth in the last 30 years.
This film alone deserves its spot in our list of best spy movies with a great sense of humor. But its 1999 sequel Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me is an equally funny movie. Cap your marathon with the third film called Austin Powers in Goldmember and we’re sure you’ll have your fill of the best spy movies with big laughs. Look for the many big-star cameos on that one, as well as a co-star who goes by the name Beyoncé!
3. True Lies
What if the father of the house misleads his own wife and daughter into thinking that he’s just an ordinary boring salesman? But the truth is, he’s actually a highly-trained spy working for the government. Yep, that will indeed supply us laughs, as you will see in the 1994 film called True Lies.
Starring our beloved 1990s action hero Arnold Schwarzenegger as Harry the secret spy, the film co-stars Jamie Lee Curtis as Harry’s frustrated wife Helen. Since she perceives her husband as leading a boring life, who’s also always away on “business conventions,” she is nearly attracted to someone else who pretends to be a secret agent.
Harry discovers his wife’s frustrations, so he tries to make up for it. It’s just humorous to see how Helen tries hard to fit into a covert operation staged by Harry. But things go south when true terrorists arrive, and things go haywire for the couple.
So what happens next? Watch this ‘90s funny to find out! And you’ll see why it deserves to be on this list of best spy movies with humor.
If you’re a retired CIA agent doing spy stuff who suddenly finds himself in the middle of an assassination attempt, what would you do? Of course, kill the bad guys first, then try to see what’s going on. And if there is indeed something big going down, then you go find others like you who can finish off a mission.
This is basically the plot for the interesting 2010 movie called Red. In this film, RED is an acronym that means “retired, extremely dangerous.” And this is how Bruce Willis’ character, Frank Moses, indeed behaves like. As a spy in retirement, things could get boring and slow. But with this new situation at hand, he finds himself back in the game.
But of course, he recruits fellow RED spies like him. Enter a motley crew of interesting senior citizens and older people who have actually embraced retirement already. This new invite, of course, jolts them out of retirement – and back into the spy action!
Watch this gem of a movie and see why it belongs here in our list of best spy movies with a great sense of humor. Seeing the great dramatic actress Helen Mirren firing an assault weapon is such a bonus here!
The two Kingsman movies are worthy of including here in our list of best spy movies with really funny storylines. While the story per se is not so humorous in a “funny ha-ha” way, the lighthearted treatment of the spy saga is enough to include them here.
The first film, Kingsman: The Secret Service, is a 2014 film about a lax British teener named Eggsy who lives with his single mom and her current abusive boyfriend. Someone gives him a mysterious number to contact in case of an emergency. When he gets in touch, he soon discovers things about a secret intelligence agency full of spies with rich gadgetry.
It turns out that his deceased father was once an agent of this Kingsman organization. So they try to recruit and train Eggsy to be an agent as well. It’s also to help thwart an evil villain with his plans of world domination.
Obviously another spy film spoof, this one works because the humor is intertwined with the sympathetic characters and their actions. Go watch this, and watch its sequel Kingsman: The Golden Circle as well. Both are spectacular in their wit, style, and action sequences.
6. Agent Cody Banks
What if you’re a typical American teenager who goes to school and summer camp, has a curfew and chores, and gets shy in front of girls? Not totally bad, except that you’re also a secret spy working for the CIA! Then that’s the life of Agent Cody Banks.
This 2003 film stars Frankie Muniz as Cody, the teen who gets enlisted by the CIA to join a special mission. And since he’s a new young spy, he gets to infiltrate a school where he could get near their target villain’s daughter. His mission is to hopefully get some information about her father’s evil doings by befriending her.
That should be such an easy task for a spy! Except that, because he is such a typical teenager, he has a hard time approaching and speaking to girls! And that’s really the hard part of the job? Well, in one of the best spy movies with huge humor, it is!
So go watch this funny one and see how this turns out for our teen hero!
7. This Means War
What if two CIA agents fall for the same woman? It’s bad enough that they have to hide their real identities from their leading lady. But the lady seems to be hell-bent on discovering which of the two guys is meant for her. Yes, that will indeed spell out some kind of war.
This is the rather funny plot of the 2012 movie This Means War. Starring Chris Pine and Tom Hardy as the two CIA agents, they will try their best to spy on the woman they’re dating, hoping that she will not choose the other one! What a way to apply your spying skills, right? But if the woman is played by Reese Witherspoon, then it’s quite understandable!
This really funny film is directed by humor-action director McG. To say that the film is co-produced by Will Smith will also add credence to this film on the countdown. That’s why it’s here in our list of best spy movies with humor. Go watch.
8. Inglourious Basterds
When you need an interesting mix of strange characters out on a mission to do crazy stuff, then you call on writer-director Quentin Tarantino for that. In the process, watch his film called Inglourious Basterds.
This 2009 film is at times humorous and at times lunatic! It’s mostly about different attempts of stopping the Nazis during their reign in Germany. And behind the two attempts are different characters with differing approaches. One plot is by a cinema house operator while the other is by a group of Americans soldiers.
What’s interesting with these two plots is that they are both planned by Jewish people. One is of French origin and the other is American. So can you now imagine the convoluted humor that this film would produce? That’s why it is here in our list of best spy movies with a sense of humor. It will really make you think and chuckle.
9. Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
Would you believe that a game show producer and host could also be a spy for the CIA? This rather strange and funny premise is the plot of the film called Confessions of a Dangerous Mind. But what’s stranger here is that the story is actually a true-to-life one! Or so the protagonist claims.
Based on the memoirs of Chuck Barris, the creator of 1960s game shows such as The Dating Game and The Newlywed Game, this 2002 film stars Sam Rockwell playing Chuck. The film traces his life when he joined the TV industry, then got recruited by the CIA later to become a spy. And he balances these two lives.
George Clooney also co-stars, as well as Drew Barrymore. With a script by Charlie Kaufman, humor will definitely be a part of this story. This is why the film is included in our list of best spy movies written with great humor. And oh, George Clooney also directs this one, his first directorial job ever. So go watch it!
10. Burn After Reading
What if a spy movie involves ordinary people who encounter banal materials that they think are spy stuff, then tries to spy on others to execute strange plans? This is somehow a straight-up summary of what the black comedy Burn After Reading is all about!
With writer-director tandem Joel and Ethan Coen at the helm of this crazy plot, it’s no surprise that this 2008 film finds itself its rightful spot on our list of best spy movies with humor. At the center of this plot is indeed a CIA agent, but the spying is not really done by him. When he loses a disc that some not-so-smart people think is full of spy stuff, that’s where all hell breaks loose!
Watch this really interesting film and get a kick out of their antics! The Coen brothers won’t disappoint, promise!