11 Harold Ramis movies to make you laugh

A scene from Groundhog Day, directed by Harold Ramis, starring Bill Murray. (Handout)

A scene from Groundhog Day, directed by Harold Ramis, starring Bill Murray. (Handout)

Mark Daniell, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 4:33 PM ET

We all remember Harold Ramis in Ghostbusters. (And, if you’re like me, you were eagerly awaiting the return of Egon Spengler in a third instalment.) But there was more to Ramis that made us laugh. He’s responsible for a rare – and good – funny performance from Robert De Niro (Analyze This) and he gave audiences some of Bill Murray’s most memorable roles. Along the way he wrote ‘80s laughers like National Lampoon’s Vacation, Back to School (I caught it at the drive-in), Club Paradise (saw that one at the now-defunct Cumberland) and Armed and Dangerous – a classic from John Candy’s filmography.

His name after the Director or Writer, usually meant you’d laugh for the next 90 minutes.

Herewith, 11 movies in which Ramis’ wit and comedic timing made us smile.

Stripes (1981)

After writing parts for his pal Bill Murray in Caddyshack and Meatballs, Ramis took some of the punchlines for himself in the Ivan Reitman-directed comedy. “That’s the fact, Jack!”

Armed and Dangerous (1986)

Ramis co-wrote the comedy starring John Candy and Eugene Levy.

Back to School (1986)

It’s a Rodney Dangerfield classic, but it’s Ramis who gave him the line, “Read. Who has time? I see the movie. I'm in and out in two hours.”

Ghostbusters (1984)

It’s classic for people of a certain vintage.

Meatballs (1979)

By the time I saw it, I really wished my parents had sent me to summer camp.

Analyze This (1999)

Ramis helped Robert De Niro hit the laughter jackpot by directing this mafia send-up that co-starred Billy Crystal.

Club Paradise (1986)

An early directorial effort from Ramis, when Robin Williams was actually funny and Rick Moranis wasn’t retired.

Caddyshack (1980)

Ramis’ directorial debut starred a who’s-who of comedy – Bill Murray, Rodney Dangerfield and Chevy Chase.

Animal House (1978)

Co-written by Ramis, the frat-boy hysterics helped launch the career of John Belushi. It also helped a legion of parents get familiar with the line, “Seven years of college down the drain.”

Groundhog Day (1993)

Ramis directed this semi-serious comedy in which Bill Murray has to relive one day over and over again causing him to figure out what really matters in life. It still holds up today, but I’m still not a fan of Punxsutawney Phil.

National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)

Helmed by Ramis, Clark Griswold is Chevy Chase at his funniest.


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