They say “motherhood is a biological state whereas fatherhood is a sociological condition”. This Father’s Day we have curated 10 films that explore the often under-rated role of fatherhood and unravel its different shades and colours. This father’s day cannot get better without a sneak-peak at these all time favourite movie dads who continue to enthrall us through the ages.
1. The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)
Chris Gardner cannot offer the luxuries of the world to his son; but what he can offer is his moral vision of relentless determination and ability to endure pain. Moving through homelessness and loneliness, Gardner tries to bring together the different dominoes pieces to make sense of his life.
A father who has not turned bitter and caustic despite his hardships and struggle!
2. King Lear (1983)
The protagonist of this Shakespearean tragedy-turned-film displays the pangs of a betrayed father. The film portrays different shades of the father-daughter relationship explored through the central character, King Lear (played by Laurence Olivier), and his three daughters. In a sheer lapse of judgment, the aging King gives in to his two scheming, sweet talking daughters, overlooking the loyalty, love and honesty of the one who wishes him well.
Every father would relate to the pains and pangs of Lear who suffered betrayal at the hands of his own children.
3. Jersey Girl (2004)
Oliver “Ollie” Trinke strives to be the “best father in the world” while simultaneously grieving his spouse, Gertrude’s death, and taking care of his daughter, Gertie, whom he ignored for a considerable period of time. Oliver’s grief, struggle, determination, love and compassion; examines the trials and tribulations of single-parenting!
This father’s day, let this film tell all dads out there that fatherhood as a state can be nurtured all alone and can be sustained without partnership.
4. Bicycle Thieves (1948)
Antonio Ricci, the lone, solitary father figure tries to secure a position for himself and his family in the post-world war II Rome. He and his son’s quest for their stolen bicycle, without which Ricci would not able to keep up his job laces the audience with the twin emotion of compassion and sympathy. The hostile circumstances do not overwhelm his love for his children.
On father’s day, let this film be a tribute to all those poor, destitute fathers who are fighting to earn two square meals a day for their family.
5. Kick Ass (2010)
Damon MacReady comes across as a real life superhero Daddy who trains Mindy MacReady in weaponry to fight against crime. An unusual bonding with the child is at display here, which is not so much based on compassion but on training and imparting skills to make his daughter brave and self-reliant!
An example of all those real life fathers who are superheroes to their children.
6. A Boy Called Dad (2009)
While the film explores the different shades of being a father, 14-year-old Robbie, the central character explores the notion of fatherhood as a performance. This young father captivates us with his maturity, wisdom and tender affection for his son, Elliot.
Robbie embodies the notion that fatherhood is a sociological construct, and that age has got nothing to do with being a dad.
7. Mrs. Doubtfire (1993)
While going through a divorce, a dad adopts the disguise of a female housekeeper in a desparate attempt to be with his children. Daniel Hillard a.k.a. Mrs. Doubtfire arrests our attention with his gender bending abilities.
In a humorous, light-hearted way, the movie brings forth the plight of a father who does not want to lose his children.
8. John Q (2002)
John Quincy Archibald challenges the frontiers of fatherly love by taking a hospital full of people to hostage when the medical authorities refuse to operate his son for a heart transplant. While dwelling on the surface theme of a father’s love for his child, the movie deals with the issues of medical corruption and criminality that find place amidst the father-son relationship.
This film is a father’s delight and John Q stands out as ‘every-father’ whose love for his son is indubitable.
9. Father of the Bride (1991)
George Banks cannot concede with the fact that his daughter has grown up and is ready to get married and move out with the man of her choice. This is a comedy movie that playfully deals with the insanity of George, who still thinks that his daughter is young and needs his protection and care.
To all the fathers who are over-protective and possessive about their children, this is a must watch!
10. Lion King (1994)
Following the lines of Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’, this animation film narrates the avenge of a father’s death. Simba, a lion cub rightfully ascends the throne after his father Musafa gets killed in a conspiracy.
Lion King gives hope to fathers and children that justice would prevail after brief periods of wrongdoing.
Nothing can be a better gift to your father than sitting together and catching up one (or more) of these films. Do tell us what makes your Father the coolest Dad in the world!