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Ranking the 10 best Jack Black movies

Does your favorite Jack Black comedy make the list of his best? Find out here

Jack Black
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While it can hard to find an actor or performer that everyone likes nowadays, make no mistake about it, Jack Black is as close as you can get to a universally beloved celebrity. Black is a comedic rock star, someone who uses his skills as a jokester and a musician to captivate audiences with a genuine fervor that is signature to just Black. He fits as a supporting actor, a leading man, and a voice of cuddly pandas and spiky fictional video game antagonists. These are the 10 best Jack Black movies you can go back and enjoy over and over again for years to come.

10. Goosebumps (2015)

10. Goosebumps
103m
Genre
Adventure, Horror, Comedy
Stars
Jack Black, Dylan Minnette, Odeya Rush
Directed by
Rob Letterman
Watch on Netflix
Based on the popular children’s horror novels by R.L. Stein, Goosebumps is a film that follows a fictionalized version of the author, played by Black, as he attempts to wrangle in the monsters who have gotten loose around the town of Madison, Delaware. This is a great one for families who want some tame horror with a touch of humor that Jack Black always infuses into even the darkest situations. A sequel without Black was released in October of 2018 titled Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween.

9. Orange County (2002)

9. Orange County
82m
Genre
Comedy, Drama
Stars
Colin Hanks, Jack Black, Schuyler Fisk
Directed by
Jake Kasdan
Watch on Paramount+
Jack Black plays Colin Hank’s co-star in this comedy about a party-minded teenager who tries to change his life after getting into a prestigious author’s work. Black plays Hanks’ hilarious brother, a stoner who often appears on screen in his underwear. This was one of Black’s first major roles he became known for, and it doesn’t hurt that it featured a star-studded cast of actors such as Ben Stiller, John Lithgow, and Catherine O’Hara.

8. Ice Age (2002)

8. Ice Age
81m
Genre
Animation, Comedy, Family, Adventure
Stars
Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary
Directed by
Chris Wedge
Watch on Disney+
While companies like DreamWorks and Pixar have dominated the animation scene for the last two decades, there are a few franchises that have been able to blossom outside of this dominant orbit. Ice Age from Blue Sky Studios has been one of the most successful family-friendly movie series since the 2000s. The first film features three era-specific animals that form a bond with a human baby while trying to save it from the dangers of the natural world around them. Jack Black provides voice work as Zeke, one of the saber-toothed tigers opposing the protagonist group. Unfortunately, Black never appeared in any of the sequels of Ice Age.

7. King Kong (2005)

7. King Kong
187m
Genre
Adventure, Drama, Action
Stars
Naomi Watts, Jack Black, Adrien Brody
Directed by
Peter Jackson
Watch on Peacock
Before King Kong was turned into a part of the mediocre MonsterVerse with Godzilla, Peter Jackson of Lord of the Rings fame had other ideas for the famous gigantic gorilla. Jack Black plays Carl Denham, an overly ambitious film director who will do whatever it takes to capture footage of Kong and the various monsters of Skull Island with his actors. Black’s wit and delivery during tense moments of the film helped grant levity to a 3-hour runtime that wore many audiences down. Still, King Kong is arguably the best adaptation of the original 1933 film about the lonely ape.

6. High Fidelity (2000)

6. High Fidelity
113m
Genre
Drama, Comedy, Romance, Music
Stars
John Cusack, Iben Hjejle, Todd Louiso
Directed by
Stephen Frears
Watch on Hulu
This classic John Cusack romantic comedy is one of the first times Jack Black gets to show off his incredible passion and knowledge for the world of music. Black plays Barry Judd, a record store worker with an infinite mind for tunes. Black tries to help Cusack’s character, Rob Gordon, analyze the reasons why he simply can’t maintain a successful relationship with a woman. It’s a film with tired tropes around love, but the acting and humor push the film through to the finish line with flying colors!

5. Tropic Thunder (2008)

5. Tropic Thunder
107m
Genre
Action, Comedy, Adventure, War
Stars
Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Robert Downey Jr.
Directed by
Ben Stiller
Watch on Amazon
There’s no movie quite like Tropic Thunder, a war spoof carried by a Ben Stiller-led ensemble cast. Black plays an actor who is addicted to drugs and has no real acting skills other than to make inappropriate poop and fart gags. Black leans all the way into this role, accentuating all of his typical humorous traits to perfection in a much more adult setting than what we usually expect him to appear in.

4. School of Rock (2003)

4. School of Rock
110m
Genre
Comedy, Music, Family
Stars
Jack Black, Joan Cusack, Mike White
Directed by
Richard Linklater
Watch on Paramount+
No Jack Black movie encapsulates his personality and life story more than this early-aughts musical comedy. Black plays Dewey Finn, a loser who can’t pay his rent and has outrageous dreams about being a rock star. Dewey pretends to be a substitute teacher so he can collect enough money for his living expenses while also imparting musical knowledge on the students. Miranda Cosgrove and Joan Cusack co-star in this one.

3. The Super Mario Bros. Movie (2023)

3. The Super Mario Bros. Movie
92m
Genre
Animation, Adventure, Family, Fantasy, Comedy
Stars
Chris Pratt, Charlie Day, Anya Taylor-Joy
Directed by
Michael Jelenic, Aaron Horvath
Watch on Amazon
The movie based off of Nintendo’s most famous video game character has been the biggest box office success of 2023. Mario (Chris Pratt) must save his brother Luigi (Charlie Day) from the clutches of the evil Bowser, voiced by Jack Black. The actor is able to infuse Bowser with his iconic charm from the games, while also letting the audience know that he’s a villain to be reckoned with. We can’t wait to see if there will be more movies set in the Mushroom Kingdom in the years to come.

2. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017)

2. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
119m
Genre
Adventure, Action, Comedy, Fantasy
Stars
Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black
Directed by
Jake Kasdan
Watch on Hulu
There are a lot of hilarious actors in this reimagining of the Robin Williams’ hit Jumanji. Dwayne Johnson is his heroic, yet calmly funny self. Kevin Hart brings the energy and the noise to the jungle. But it’s Jack Black playing the role of a teenage girl stuck in a middle-aged man’s body that steals every scene as the characters try to escape the dangers of a real-life video game. Black is equally funny in the sequel Jumanji: The Next Level.

1. Kung Fu Panda (2008)

1. Kung Fu Panda
90m
Genre
Action, Adventure, Animation, Family, Comedy
Stars
Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie
Directed by
Mark Osborne, John Stevenson
Watch on Hulu
It speaks to Jack Black’s irreplaceable voice talent that his best role remains this DreamWorks film from the late 2000s. Kung Fu Panda is the ultimate family movie, the type of film that makes you feel good about family and friends and overcoming all odds to achieve success. Black voices Po, an underwhelming giant panda who trains to become the Dragon Warrior. Other actors who voice the supporting anthropomorphic animals in the franchise include Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie, and Seth Rogan. There have been multiple sequels in the decade-plus since, and there will be a fourth movie that comes out in 2024 in which Black will once again reprise his role as Po.

Editors' Recommendations

Movie images and data from:
Shawn Laib
Shawn Laib is a freelance writer with publications such as Den of Geek, Quote.com, Edge Media Network, diaTribe, SUPERJUMP…
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