The 50 Funniest Movies Ever Made

34. To Be or Not to Be

Sometimes, in the right hands, comedy can take on just about anything. Exhibit A is Lubitsch’s To Be or Not To Be, a ruthlessly funny combination of backstage farce and Nazi satire, which hit theaters in 1942, when Hitler was not all that funny. Yet Lubitsch and stars Jack Benny and Carole Lombard (possibly the best performance by either actor) proved what Chaplin’s The Great Dictator suggested: that perhaps the best weapon against pure evil was the simple act of pointing and laughing.