Do you remember the movies you couldn't wait to see in theaters a decade ago? What about just five years ago? Sure, the Oscar winners and epics are easy to remember, but comedies, which often rely heavily on current events and the overall state of everyday life, can be quickly forgotten when something like a new technological gadget can make them almost impossible to relate to (hello cell phones and every movie made before the mid-1990s). Here are some of our picks for comedies that came out in 2006 and 2011 that are still worth at least one watch today.
The Holiday (Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jack Black, Jude Law) - Before Airbnb was a thing, Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet were exchanging houses with one another after the men in their lives stomped all over them. Men overseas, of course, are an exception to the "no men" rule.
She's the Man (Amanda Bynes, Channing Tatum) - Pre-crazy Amanda Bynes and pre-Magic Mike Channing Tatum. The one-liners are worth suffering through some of the slapstick, and bonus points to the mid-2000s gay best friend with a bleached faux hawk.
My Super Ex Girlfriend (Uma Thurman, Luke Wilson) - Movies that relied on special effects in their heyday get the short end of the stick down the road, but Uma Thurman as a clingy, dramatic , spurned superhero is worth a watch the next time you see it on Netflix.
Employee of the Month (Dane Cook, Jessica Simpson) - Remember when all your straight friends were obsessed with Dane Cook standup about 10 years ago? Well his isolated relevance peaked with this film co-starring Jessica Simpson, where the two are employees at a superstore. Rom-com cliches aplenty.
Last Holiday (Queen Latifah, LL Cool J) - A terminal illness diagnosis prompts the ever-cautions Georgia (Queen Latifah) to drain her bank account and go on a lavish vacation before she dies. If her speech to herself in the mirror about how she's going to live her next life doesn't pull you in, nothing will.
Another Gay Movie - Taking a page from Not Another Teen Movie's book, we get a marriage of recurring coming-of-age tropes and cliches filtered through a gay lens. Just remember, this film came out before the massive LGBT representation movement in the entertainment industry, so go easy on the stereotypical characters.
Eating Out 2: Sloppy Seconds - Don't go anywhere near the Eating Out franchise if you're a stickler for political correctness. But if you want to think that the producers of the film only ever had the best intentions, replace some of gays-specific dialogue about acceptance and nurturing with "queer."
Bring It On: All or Nothing (Hayden Panettiere, Solange Knowles) - Ok, yes it was a straight-to-video sequel, but the fact that it featured pre-megastardom Hayden Panetierre, Solange, AND Rihanna should count for something. Your drinking game includes a drink for every time Solange says "white girl" or some derivative, and every time someone uses a flip phone.
Friends with Benefits (Justin Timberlake, Mila Kunis) - Now that we're breaking into five-year-old movies that you may or may not remember, at least whatever technological hang-ups you had about the previous movies can be assuaged. In this one we get a very toned Justin Timberlake trying to only have casual sex with Mila Kunis. Of course that doesn't work out, but the predictable plot is pleasantly broken up by Patricia Clarkson and flash mobs (remember those?).
No Strings Attached (Ashton Kutcher, Natalie Portman) - The weaker of the two curiously similar movies, it's still worth a watch to see a drunk Natalie Portman call a fake-tanner a "pumpkin bitch."
Bad Teacher (Cameron Diaz, Justin Timberlake) - Worth seeing just to witness the rivalry between Cameron Diaz and Lucy Punch's characters, and a supporting Phyllis Smith. It's a realistic depiction of how anyone without a teacher's saintly amount of patience would deal with a classroom full of children.
The Change-up (Jason Bateman, Ryan Reynolds) - Professional father Jason Bateman and promiscuous slacker Ryan Reynolds switch bodies after peeing into a magic fountain next to each other. The film is literally forgetful. I actually saw this in theaters and didn't remember it existed until I stumbled across the poster and trailer.
What's Your Number? (Anna Faris, Chris Evans) - Not a bad movie by any means, but this low-key Chris Evans rom-com came out the same year as the first Captain America movie, so whatever press he did for this was quickly eclipsed by the beginning of his impressive Marvel franchise. Anna Farris' exes, whom she's avidly hunting down to see if any of them have become marriage material, are worth watching for alone - including Anthony Mackie, Chris Pratt, and Dave Annable.
Arthur (Russel Brand, Helen Mirren) - This remake, which no one ever asked for, was another case of someone, in this case Russell Brand, riding his receding wave of popularity. The real draw here is Helen Mirren as Arthurs' optimistic nanny / confidant, and Jennifer Garner as his vindictive betrothed.
Take Me Home Tonight (Topher Grace, Teresa Palmer) - Part of the '80s nostalgia wave that preceded Stranger Things, underrated cutie Topher Grace attends a house party that acts as a high school reunion where he lies about how successful he's become. At least his job at Suncoast Video, a recognizable establishment that withstood the test of time, is still secure. Oh, wait.