This Father’s Day, spend some quality time with dad by catching some of the best films fatherhood-centric cinema has to offer.
June 19 won’t just be any regular Sunday. It is a day to celebrate the man of the family who serves as a rock for many and works hard every day to make sure his family lives a comfortable life. It’s Father’s Day and it is a time to thank all the loving, caring, and thoughtful fathers out there who help bring home the bacon and then some. And if you are looking to spend some quality time with your dad, few things scream a good time as much as a movie marathon.
In the world of film, there are many movies out there showcasing the often intricate and misunderstood world of fatherhood as told through different mediums and narratives. So, for that Father’s Day celebration, we recommend these following films to add for that perfect movie marathon with dad and the rest of the family.
You’d be surprised how space and fatherhood go hand in hand. There is of course the iconic father son bond between Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader in Star Wars. But for a more modern and underrated pick, we’re going with Ad Astra. This 2019 sci-fi adventure follows astronaut Roy McBride (Brad Pitt) who is assigned to travel across the solar system to help planet earth from being destroyed. The thing is that this was the same mission his dad took before he went missing 30 years ago. Now, Roy must not only save earth, but learn the truth behind the disappearance of his dad. Ad Astra is a space story that has more heart in it than you’d expect as Roy comes to terms with the potential fate of his father.
Every father wants what’s best for their family. And in Minari, we see that unfold through the eyes of a family of immigrants. The story follows a Korean family who moves to Arkansas in the 1980s to start a farm and begin anew. But as time goes, it’s made clear that a better future isn’t happening without first going through a rough present. This acclaimed film is definitely a must watch as it serves as a touching and striking ode to immigrant fathers with dreams of a better life for his family. As the head of the family, Jacob (Steven Yeun), goes through the trials and tribulations of starting over to make his dreams come true. We get to see process raising his kids all while realizing that things aren’t 100% perfect.
ANG NANAY KONG TATAY
These days, we know that fatherhood isn’t just defined as the typical straight and masculine depiction it is often seen as. Fatherhood can come in a variety of backgrounds from single fathers to LGBTQIA+ families. And this Lino Brocka classic was a trailblazer in depicting fatherhood in a different light. Released in 1978, the movie follows Coring (played by the late and great Dolphy), a gay beautician who one day learns that he had a son with a woman whom he needs to take care of.
While things start off awkward at first, the film takes its time to show how Coring learns to become a good father while his son learns to accept his father’s identity. Even as far back as the 70s, cinema has always reminded us that anyone can be a father, regardless of where they come from so as long as they have the heart, love, and care for it.
Pixar is known for placing timeless lessons into their filmography of iconic films. And one of their most legendary is Finding Nemo. This classic about Marlin and Dory traveling all the way to Australia just to save Nemo is a classic and relatable no matter what age you watch it. Not only is it a genuinely fun film, but it is also one of the best examples in movies of what lengths father will go to just for their kids. If you are looking for a more modern take on this theme from Pixar, we suggest you check out Onward and its magical tale of two brothers trying to bring back their father through a spell.
No matter how far you are from Earth, the bond between father and child will always be there as seen in Christopher Nolan’s space opera Interstellar. While most of the story centers on Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) and Brand (Anne Hathaway) traveling through space in order to save the world, the relationship between Cooper and his daughter Murph (Jessica Chastain) is one of the main emotional pillars of the narrative. From beginning to end, it’s clear that Cooper and Murph’s relationship is central to the story. And that scene where Cooper learns just how much time has passed seeing his children all grown up hits too close to the heart.
Even superheroes have to deal with fatherhood from time to time. Serving as Hugh Jackman’s final outing as Wolverine, the film follows the titular X-men at the tail-end of his life far gone his youthful days. But his final mission is yet to come as when he comes across a mysterious mutant named Laura, he must bring her to safety. While their relationship starts off as cold in the beginning, over time, the two warm up to each other with Logan even becoming a father figure of sorts to Laura. The ending in particular is going to hit you in the feels as their father-daughter like bond solidifies.
As children grow up, it’s expected that they leave the roost to build their own lives. But just because they are doing their own thing, that doesn’t mean they should be forgetting their parents so easily. This is what Seven Sundays is all about. Featuring an all-star cast that includes Aga Muhlach, Dingdong Dantes, Enrique Gil, and Cristine Reyes, the movie follows a widowed father named Manuel Bonifacio. One day, he discovers that he has cancer and informs his family of the diagnosis and that he has only seven weeks to live. Because of this, his children return home and reunite in order to be with their dad during his last days. This film’s touching message may just make you appreciate your father that much more and realize time with him is important because you will never know what’s going to happen.
A GOOFY MOVIE
There’s a reason why people still talk about this movie to this day. This childhood classic follows Goofy and his son Max as they go on a cross-country fishing trip as a way for Goofy to get closer to his son. But in Max’s eyes, his dad is ruining his summer vacation and preventing him from seeing the girl of his dreams, Roxanne. Throughout most of the film, the two fight as the all-too relatable feeling of your dad not understanding you comes into focus. But at its heart is a tale of what it means for a father and son to connect despite their differences and misunderstandings. It’s sequel, An Extremely Goofy Movie, is also worth the watch as well.
TOP GUN: MAVERICK
The newest entry on this list, Top Gun: Maverick is mostly about fighter jets and the people who fly them. But a main part of its story is how Maverick is learning to cope seeing Goose’s son, Rooster, be part of the team. Rooster hates Maverick for what happened between him and his father and Maverick ends up feeling like it’s his fault. As the film progresses, you get to see how their dynamic shifts and changes as they learn to trust each other with Maverick becoming like a father figure to him. If you do plan on seeing this in the cinema, we recommend you see it in the biggest screen possible like in IMAX to really appreciate the film’s exceptional action and camera work.
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