Who’s Laughing Now? Fresh Comedies For April Fools’ Day

Four funny films whose humor goes for more than laughs.

This April Fools’ Day, you can get in on the joke with smart comedies that are more than just hilarious.

From pointed satires to poignant romances, these movies use humor in new and unexpected ways to make sure you both laugh and think.

Justice Smith and David Alan Grier in The American Society of Magical Negroes

The American Society of Magical Negroes

In Kobi Libii’s debut feature The American Society of Magical Negroes, Aren (Justice Smith) is initiated by Roger (David Alan Grier) into a mysterious organization whose purpose is to make white people feel more comfortable. After being apprenticed in the organization’s magical arts, Aren is assigned to help a frustrated internet designer (Drew Tarver), even to the point of thwarting his own romantic interests. The film’s fantastic plot parodies the “Magical Negro” trope, in which a selfless Black character primarily exists to help their white friend. In dealing with such complex issues, Libii says in the production notes, “It was important to me to use comedy to make conversation possible.” Variety writes, “The American Society of Magical Negroes is a deftly observant fantasy comedy that stays true to its own irreverence.”

The American Society of Magical Negroes is playing in theaters—get tickets now!

Official trailer for The American Society of Magical Negroes

Cole Sprouse and Kathryn Newton in Lisa Frankenstein

Lisa Frankenstein

Directed by Zelda Williams from a script by Academy Award®-winner Diablo Cody, Lisa Frankenstein is a hilarious '80s-style horror romp. Williams said in the production notes, “I wanted this movie to be funny, but I also wanted it to feel like it was funny in a less modern way." In the zany tale, Lisa Swallows (Kathryn Newton) is an awkward teen who finds a real friend when she accidentally awakens a 19th-century corpse (Cole Sprouse). Despite urgings from her peppy step-sister (Liza Soberano) and maniacal stepmom (Carla Gugino) to be more like the other kids, Lisa follows her heart and stays true to her recently dead beau. The film, the A.V. Club writes, “is performed by a very game cast who all understand the assignment and deliver what is likely to be one of the funniest films of the year.”

Watch Lisa Frankenstein now on Apple TV or Amazon!

Official trailer for Lisa Frankenstein

Margaret Qualley and Geraldine Viswanathan in Drive-Away Dolls

Drive-Away Dolls

Drive-Away Dolls, directed by Ethan Coen from a screenplay by Coen and Tricia Cooke, is a pedal-to-the-medal uproarious road movie about two girls (Margaret Qualley and Geraldine Viswanathan) from Philadelphia who are intent on getting to Tallahassee, Florida. The only things standing in their way are a gang of inept criminals, a shady politician, and lots of groovy dive bars to visit along the way. Inspired by '60s sexploitation films, the filmmakers wanted the adventure to be fun. “We wanted it to have a lot of sex but fun sex,” Cooke says in the production notes. In the end, the film is both fun and something more. RogerEbert.com writes, “This madcap escapade is unexpectedly sweet and romantic thanks to its unapologetic commitment to womanly smarts and pleasures.”

Watch Drive-Away Dolls now in theaters or on Apple TV or Amazon!

Official trailer for Drive-Away Dolls

Richard Jenkins, Debra Winger, and Evan Rachel Wood in Kajillionaire


In Miranda July’s comedy Kajillionaire, Old Dolio (Evan Rachel Wood) belongs to a family of low-rent grifters (Richard Jenkins and Debra Winger) who live in a deserted office space right next to a bubble factory. Her other drab existence of petty fraud is suddenly changed when she meets Melanie (Gina Rodrigeuz). Mixing humor with heartbreak, July creates a comedy in which the characters’ emotions are revealed in hilariously absurdist ways. “I’m writing it funny because there’s no other way to get across that kind of pain sometimes,” July tells Deadline. The Atlantic writes that Kajillionaire is her “best work, mixing her gift for quirky comedy with a heartbreaking story.”

Watch Kajillionaire now on Apple TV or Amazon!

Official trailer for Kajillionare