12 Of The Funniest Movie Insults
Just kidding, of course. We were simply getting into the spirit of movie insults and got carried away. Which is easy to understand; some of the funniest moments in film are those times where a character just lets loose with the most creative put-downs, slams, and straight-up smack talk imaginable. Take a look at some of our favorites and see if you agree—you’d have to be a jerk not to.
Not only is this epic smackdown the best part of Billy Madison, it also singlehandedly justifies the existence of memes. If we had a buck for every time someone posted this on a frenemy’s Facebook feed, we’d be very rich indeed. Alex Trebek, eat your heart out!
Full Metal Jacket
Not every hilarious onscreen insult comes from a comedy. Case in point: this legendary ripjob by R. Lee Ermey’s sadistic drill sergeant. Fun fact, most of Ermey’s many amazing putdowns and rants were actually improvised by the actor himself, who was a real-life Marine Corps drill instructor. Um, we think we’ll stick to civilian life, thanks.
Like the vicious soliloquies in Full Metal Jacket, many of the best insults and smackdowns in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy were ad-libbed by the hilarious cast. Here’s one of the best moments, courtesy of Will Ferrell and the criminally underrated Christina Applegate.
The Three Amigos
If there’s one thing that’s clear from watching The Three Amigos it’s that Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Chevy Chase love language. Heck, one of the film’s most famous scenes is a couple of banditos debating the definition of the word “plethora.” In this classic clip, Martin takes particular glee in harnessing his vocabulary to drop some serious bombs on his hapless target.
Gleaming the Cube
When you woke up this morning, bet you weren’t expecting to be watching random clips from an ’80s Christian Slater movie about skateboarding. And if you were expecting that, well, your life is way more interesting than we just gave you credit for. Either way, here’s a fantastically random insult from a gnarly cult classic most people have never even heard of.
The Witches of Eastwick
Is there anything Cher can’t do? For more than half a century she’s been straight up ballin’, recording massive hit songs in decade after decade while moonlighting as an Oscar-winning actress. Here she is going toe to toe with the legendary Jack Nicholson. One guess who comes out on top in this epic confrontation. Hint: it ain’t Jack!
The Big Lebowski
Don’t think The Big Lebowski is one of the greatest movies of all time? Like, that’s just your opinion, man. Here’s our opinion: this straight talk from the fuzz to the Dude is one of the funniest moments in the film. Almost better than the insult itself is the Dude’s absolutely killer comeback. He does indeed abide.
The Princess Bride
In a movie chock full of quotable catchphrases, it’s almost understandable that this somewhat understated verbal elbow drop has gone a bit under the radar. That’s mostly due to Cary Elwes’ smoothly deadpan delivery. But don’t sleep on this one. It’s the perfect insult to randomly slip into conversation with someone you despise. And if you’re as charming as The Dread Pirate Westley, they might not even notice you doing it.
A Fish Called Wanda
Kevin Kline won an Oscar for his performance in A Fish Called Wanda, and if you want to know why, look no further than this scene where his bumbling jewel thief finally has had enough of John Cleese’s condescension. As the rage builds and he lets loose his anger, you can almost see the words tripping over themselves on his tongue as they rush to get out. Great stuff.
How much fun must it be to be John Malkovich? At this point, he could pretty much do anything he wanted onscreen and nobody would blink an eye. Poop his pants? Just another intriguing Malkovich character quirk! In a film where he threatens to assassinate a stuffed animal, this quip is hardly his most startling moment, but it still might be the best.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
There are classic movie putdowns and then there’s this, which is literally the Holy Grail of quotable film insults. More than 40 years later, you still can’t go to a Ren faire or sci-fi con without hearing it quoted at least once. This one takes yo mama jokes to a whole new amazing level.
Finally, there’s Toy Story. Sure, a family-friendly Pixar film wouldn’t seem to be the most likely place to find a withering putdown, but Buzz Lightyear’s condescendingly dismissive rejection of Woody is one of the coldest—and funniest—insults in film history.