Good Zach Galifianakis Movies

Friday, May 27, 2011 at 1:02 am

Films with Zach Galifianakis

If you’re familiar with comedic actor Zach Galifianakis, there’s a strong chance you either love him or hate him. It seems as though more people fall into the former category, however, as he’s been popping up in a number of movies recently with his distinctive beard and oversized belly. Those who are haters will probably want to skip this article, but everyone else is invited to check out my list of good Zach Galifianakis movies.

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Dinner for Schmucks (2010) – When he’s pressured by his boss to find a first-class eccentric to bring to a special dinner, nice-guy businessman Tim Conrad (Paul Rudd) sees his entire career flash before his eyes. Then he meets Barry Speck (Steve Carell), an IRS employee who uses dead mice as the centerpiece of detailed dioramas. Galifianakis co-stars as Therman Munch, Barry’s boss who stole his wife and seems able to exert mind control over him.

Due Date (2010) – While not as funny as Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, this comedy about a pair of mismatched individuals (Galifianakis and Robert Downey, Jr.) heading to Los Angeles has a similar premise. Galifianakis is Ethan Tremblay, an aspiring actor who dreams of appearing on Two and a Half Men, wears a perm, and must masturbate for at least a half hour before going to bed. Co-starring Jamie Foxx, Juliette Lewis, and Michelle Monaghan.

Heartbreakers (2001) – Jennifer Love Hewitt and Sigourney Weaver star as a mother-daughter team of con artists. Preparing to pursue individual careers, they’re forced into one last con by a woman claiming to be an I.R.S. agent (Anne Bancroft). Their targets: a chain-smoking widower (Gene Hackman) and a wealthy bar owner (Jason Lee). Galifianakis only has a small role in this comedy, but it’s worth watching for the performances of Hackman and Ray Liotta.

The Hangover (2009) – Nobody expected this film about a bachelor party gone hilariously wrong to clean up at the box office, but it did (to the tune of over $467 million). Ed Helms and Bradley Cooper star as two of the Vegas mischief makers, and Galifianakis rounds out the trio as Alan Garner, a socially inept loser with a mastery of card-counting, a snazzy beard, and an inability to distinguish roofies from Ecstacy.

Into the Wild (2007) – An enthralling character study of Christopher McCandless (Emile Hirsch), the real-life college grad who gave away his life savings, destroyed his credit cards, and set off to see the country in his Datsun. Along the way, he encountered a collection of interesting and eccentric individuals, writing down his thoughts in diaries which would later serve as the basis for the non-fiction book from Jon Krakauer. A fascinating tale of one young man’s efforts to lead an uncorrupted life.

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Youth in Revolt (2010) – Told from the perspective of Nick Twisp (Michael Cera), this comedy centers around the likable teen’s efforts to break away from his mother (Jean Smart) and her succession of loser boyfriends (Zach Galifianakis and Ray Liotta), as well as win the love of a trailer park beauty named Sheeni (Portia Doubleday). But after several failed efforts, he decides to invent a slick alter-ego named Francois Dillinger, a moustache-wearing bad boy who says and does everything that Nick won’t. That’s when the trouble–and the laughs–really begin. Co-starring Justin Long and Steve Buscemi.

Below (2002) – Galifianakis plays Weird Wally, an eccentric crewman of a World War II submarine under orders to pick up survivors from a torpedoed hospital ship. But there’s more going on than meets the eye, and soon passengers are seeing ghostly visions and passing away in bizarre fashion.

Operation: Endgame (2009) – An impressive ensemble cast elevates this uneven action-comedy about a group of government agents trapped in an underground bunker and ordered to kill one another. Galifianakis appears as the Hermit, an assassin with irritable bowel syndrome and diabetes. The rest of the group is rounded out by Joe Anderson, Maggie Q, Rob Corddry, Ellen Barkin, Odette Yustman, Bob Odenkirk, Ving Rhames, Jeffrey Tambor, Adam Scott, and Emilie de Ravin.

It’s Kind of a Funny Story (2010) – Adapted from the novel by Ned Vizzini, this comedy-drama focuses on Craig Gilner (Keir Cilchrist), a 16-year-old who checks into a psychiatric hospital for a week following thoughts of suicide. As the week unfolds, he makes a number of discoveries about himself, as well as befriending patients played by Zach Galifianakis and Emma Roberts.

The Hangover: Part II (2011) – The boys are back, and this time they’re heading to Thailand for Stu’s (Ed Helms) marriage to the sexy Lauren (Jamie Chung). Stu arranges a boring brunch to avoid a repeat of their Vegas adventure, but they still wind up in trouble after regaining consciousness in Bangkok. With the bride’s brother missing, the group must retrace their steps and brave the streets of a foreign city. Mike Tyson returns as himself, and he even contributes a cover of Murray Head’s classic “One Night in Bangkok.” Also starring Bradley Cooper, Ken Jeong, Paul Giamatti, and, of course, Zach Galifianakis as Alan Garner. If you’re uncomfortable with full-frontal shemale nudity, you might want to skip this one.

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The guy nicknamed “Fat Jesus” seems to be turning up everywhere these days, and this list of good Zach Galifianakis movies should serve as a handy guide for those unfamiliar with his comedic talents. And even if you’ve checked out his comedies, you may be surprised to know that not all his roles have required him to act like a buffoon.

This entry was posted on Friday, May 27th, 2011 at 1:02 am and is filed under Good Movies. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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