Fall Movie Preview: Comedies

Travis Newton

Fall of 2016 is upon us, which means you’re probably looking for a little break from election season. Which new comedies can you look to for some much-needed laughs? Here are some of the more promising releases coming to cinemas this fall.

Bridget Jones’s Baby

Release date: September 16

Renée Zellweger returns for this third entry in the Bridget Jones series, which trades Hugh Grant’s character for a hunky new American doctor Jack, played by Patrick Dempsey. After sleeping with both Jack and old flame Mark (Colin Firth), Bridget finds herself pregnant. For reasons that aren’t yet clear (an inconclusive paternity test?), the two men compete for fatherhood throughout Bridget’s pregnancy. Sharon Maguire, director of Bridget Jones’s Diary, is back in the director’s chair for this well-reviewed, R-rated rom-com. [Travis Newton]


Release date: September 30

While an actual 1997 robbery in North Carolina wouldn’t generally make for an ideal comedy, it just depends on how you approach it. Masterminds comes from Jared Hess, director of Napoleon Dynamite and Nacho Libre. The cast is full of top-tier comedy talent. Zach Galifianakis, Kristen Wiig, Owen Wilson, and others come together for this heist movie. The constant shuffling of release dates over the past year doesn’t strike confidence, but the trailer does have a lot of funny moments. Hopefully, those moments set the tone for the rest of the movie. [Bob Aquavia]

Boo! A Madea Halloween

Release date: October 21

I’ve only seen Tyler Perry’s Madea movies in incomplete bits on television, and I can never quite work out which film is which. But mark my words — I’ll be watching this one from start to finish. In this horror spoof, Madea and a troupe of grannies must fend off Saw‘s Jigsaw killer, ghosts, scary clowns, and more. Roll your eyes all you want, but if Madea wields a shotgun and flashes frat boys, then this movie isn’t a total write-off. [Travis Newton]

Keeping Up with the Joneses

Release date: October 21

The latest film from Superbad director Greg Mottola is part spy farce, part suburban comedy. Zach Galifianakis and Isla Fisher star as the Gaffneys: an ordinary couple whose lives are thrown into turmoil when new neighbors move in. The Joneses (Jon Hamm, Gal Gadot) are everything the Gaffneys aren’t: intelligent, cultured, and deadly. When their cover is blown, we discover that the Joneses are gun-toting spies on a secret mission. And somehow, their plans involve the Gaffneys, a missile, and a company called MBI. If you like seeing Zach Galifianakis run face-first into shatterproof glass, this one’s for you. [Travis Newton]

Almost Christmas

Release date: November 11

Kimberly Elise, Danny Glover, Romany Malco, Mo’Nique, JB Smoove, Gabrielle Union, and Omar Epps star in this year’s obligatory PG-13 family Christmas comedy. That’s a big cast, but also a darn good one. I hope that speaks to the quality of the script. Because aside from a few solid chuckles and some fun profanity in this trailer, this looks like a harmless riff on National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. Will we remember Almost Christmas when it’s almost Christmas in 2017? We’ll see. [Travis Newton]

Bad Santa 2

Release date: November 23

Thirteen years after the original, the crew’s getting back together. Billy Bob Thornton, Tony Cox, and Brett Kelly return for some more (hopefully) filthy fun. Christina Hendricks and Kathy Bates join the cast as well as a possible love interest and Thornton’s character’s mom. Mark Waters, known for more lighthearted fare including Mean Girls, Freaky Friday, and Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, directed this sequel. Such a drastic change in directors and writers doesn’t typically bode well. But while it won’t be exactly the same, it’s possible they could still capture the acerbic spirit of the first movie. [Bob Aquavia]

Check out what other great films are heading to cinemas soon with our fall movie previews.

Travis Newton
Travis Newton is a Fan Contributor at Fandom. He began writing about movies and TV for CHUD.com in 2012, and co-hosts The Drew Reviews Podcast with Fandom Entertainment Editor Drew Dietsch. He’s partial to horror movies, action games, and Irish Breakfast tea.
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