Monoclonal antibodies (mAb) have become a mainstay in tumor therapy. Clinical responses to mAb therapy, however, are far from optimal, with many patients presenting native or acquired resistance or suboptimal responses to a mAb therapy. MAbs exert antitumor activity through different mechanisms of action and we propose here a classification of these mechanisms. In many cases mAbs need to interact with immune cells to exert antitumor activity. We summarize evidence showing that interactions between mAbs and immune cells may be inadequate for optimal antitumor activity. This may be due to insufficient tumor accumulation of mAbs or immune cells, or to low-affinity interactions between these components. The possibilities to improve tumor accumulation of mAbs and immune cells, and to improve the affinity of the interactions between these components are reviewed. We also discuss future directions of research that might further improve the therapeutic efficacy of antitumor mAbs.