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The Best Dark Comedy Movies and TV Shows on The Criterion Channel

Finding a good Dark Comedy movie and TV show to watch can be hard, so we've ranked the best ones and included where to watch them. Check out our list of the best Dark Comedy movies and TV shows of all time streaming on The Criterion Channel.

VIEW: best
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1. Brazil

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.9/10
Reelgood Logo
88/100
Released: 1985Rated: R
Comedy, Cult

What it's about: Low-level bureaucrat Sam Lowry escapes the monotony of his day-to-day life through a recurring daydream of himself as a virtuous hero saving a beautiful damsel. Investigating a case that led to the wrongful arrest and eventual death of an innocent man instead of wanted terrorist Harry Tuttle, he meets the woman from his daydream, and in trying to help her gets caught in a web of mistaken identities, mindless bureaucracy and lies.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Hoopla) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 6 services (iTunes, Google Play & 4 others).

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2. Withnail & I

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.7/10
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81/100
Released: 1987Rated: R
Comedy, Cult

What it's about: Two out-of-work actors -- the anxious, luckless Marwood and his acerbic, alcoholic friend, Withnail -- spend their days drifting between their squalid flat, the unemployment office and the pub. When they take a holiday "by mistake" at the country house of Withnail's flamboyantly gay uncle, Monty, they encounter the unpleasant side of the English countryside: tedium, terrifying locals and torrential rain.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a popular subscription service (HBO MAX & The Criterion Channel).

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3. Sightseers

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.5/10
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70/100
Released: 2012
Action & Adventure, Comedy

What it's about: Chris wants to show girlfriend Tina his world, but events soon conspire against the couple and their dream caravan holiday takes a very wrong turn.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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4. The Ruling Class

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.4/10
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70/100
Released: 1972Rated: PG
Comedy, Cult

What it's about: When the Earl of Gurney dies in a cross-dressing accident, his schizophrenic son, Jack, inherits the Gurney estate. Jack is not the average nobleman; he sings and dances across the estate and thinks he is Jesus reincarnated. Believing that Jack is mentally unfit to own the estate, the Gurney family plots to steal Jack's inheritance. As their outrageous schemes fail, the family strives to cure Jack of his bizarre behavior, with disastrous results.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a popular subscription service (HBO MAX, The Criterion Channel & Shout Factory TV).

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5. Jubilee

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.1/10
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64/100
Released: 1978
Comedy, Cult

What it's about: Queen Elizabeth I visits late twentieth-century Britain to find a depressing landscape where life has changed since her time.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a popular subscription service (HBO MAX, The Criterion Channel & Kanopy).

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6. Satan's Brew

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.9/10
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63/100
Released: 1976
Comedy, Drama

What it's about: This fast-paced black comedy by wunderkind director Rainer Werner Fassbinder follows the frantic efforts of a starving and confused writer, Walter Kranz to beg, borrow or steal enough money to survive on, and at the same time make some sense of his confusing life. Unable to write enough to keep his publisher's royalty advances coming, he seeks out a woman he imagines is a prostitute and interviews her for material. He is also inspired to utter some poetry, which his brassy, outspoken wife identifies as coming from the famous homosexuality-advocating mystical German poet, Stefan George. This inspires Walter to take a closer look at the gay scene, and he quickly becomes a sort of celebrity there.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a popular subscription service (HBO MAX & The Criterion Channel).

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7. Life During Wartime

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.4/10
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59/100
Released: 2009Rated: R
Comedy, Independent

What it's about: Friends, family, and lovers struggle to find love, forgiveness, and meaning in an almost war-torn world riddled with comedy and pathos. Follows Solondz's film Happiness (1998).

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 3 services (iTunes, Google Play & Prime Video).

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8. The Driller Killer

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
5.1/10
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57/100
Released: 1979
Horror, Thriller

What it's about: An artist slowly goes insane while struggling to pay his bills, work on his paintings, and care for his two female roommates, which leads him taking to the streets of New York after dark and randomly killing derelicts with a power drill.

Where to Watch: Available to watch free online (Tubi), stream on a popular subscription service (Prime Video, The Criterion Channel, Kanopy & 1 other) & rent or buy from $0.99 on 4 services (iTunes, Google Play & 2 others).

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9. The Cars That Ate Paris

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
5.6/10
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52/100
Released: 1974Rated: PG
Comedy, Cult

What it's about: After the death of his brother on the road, unemployed and unstable drifter Arthur Waldo stays for a while in the rural Australian town of Paris as the guest of the mayor, who hopes he will become a permanent member of the Paris population. Arthur soon realizes the quaint hamlet has a sinister secret: they orchestrate car accidents and rob the victims. Survivors are brought to the local hospital, lobotomized, and used for a local doctor's experiments.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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10. Cold Dog Soup

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
5.6/10
Reelgood Logo
41/100
Released: 1990
Comedy

What it's about: Randy Quaid as the taxi driver drives Zen parables (Is time money - Is time the root of all evil?) into his passenger/protegee in a high-speed, idiosyncratic tour of their city's ethnic coteries. All the boy wants is to dispose of his date's dead dog Jasper and get back to the babe who's so hot she mutters darkly about being a Pressure Cooker: his conventional efforts are continually thwarted. Quaid is respected by the peculiar groups he interests in the dog's corpse and effects, and our one-gloved heroine is much keener on him than on her rather lackluster date.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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