Let’s get one thing out of the way right up front… Spaceballs is NOT on this list. Sorry all you Web Nation neophytes who think this Star War spoof is the second coming of Boba Fett. Mel Brooks made some classic comedies in his day, lampoons which legitimately stand as solid examples of his wit and work. But to champion this sloppy Schwartz stuff on a list such as this would be like suggesting that the Family Guy‘s takes on George Lucas’ life’s work were brilliant bits of satire. No, a sci-fi comedy should be more than joke names and pop culture riffs. It should stand on its own insular world weirdness instead of relying on the latest headline to elicit laughs… or worse, work the genre into a lame lather by employing it as part of dopey Three Stooges in Orbit dynamic.
As a result, a compendium of comedies revolving around the fanciful and the forward-thinking, the interplanetary and the interstellar can be tricky. Many will argue for standard movie with sci-fi elements (Groundhog Day) while others will suggest works that meet a different criteria (Mystery Men = superhero movie) that what we are dealing with here. As a matter of fact, a DVD released today (Simon Pegg and Nick Frost’s Paul) is a good example of the happy medium we are looking to achieve. On the one hand, it’s really a buddy flick with flying saucers. On the other, it’s an amazing comment on the hard to define world we’re working in. Many will argue with the choices. Some will suggest a stretching of the sci-fi definition. Whatever the case, the clear deciding factor is… are they funny?... and in this case, the answer is a resounding “YES!,” beginning with this beloved trequel of an equally adore franchise: