If you're looking for a different way to celebrate Father's Day this year, consider taking dad to the movies. Or, at least, to the room in your house with the best wi-fi connection and a screen. These movies with strong father figures will remind you what the day is all about. Best of all, many of these movies are available to stream on Netflix or Hulu, so it won't cost you much or any extra cash.
There are plenty of great dads across all the genres of film, from dramatic action flicks to heartwarming animated films. Sure, these dads on film might face otherworldly dramas that your own father is unlikely to experience, such as a zombie apocalypse, but the message at the heart of these movies is the same. Dads love their children endlessly, and they will face just about any odds to make sure their kids are safe, happy, and on the right path. You know, just like in real life (minus the zombies).
Whatever you're up to this Father's Day, consider queueing up one of these films that celebrates the best things a father can be. Whether they leave you endlessly laughing or dabbing at tears, these cinematic dads reflect the best traits of all fathers.
1. Despicable Me 2
Gru balances life as a good guy with his duties as a father in this film. The whole saving-the-world plot is a given, but his role as a dad is the real star of this movie.
2. The Road
OK, so the storyline is definitely a bummer. But it shows that a father's love is stronger than any other force, even the apocalypse. The dangers of starvation or other dangerous survivors cannot even compete.
3. Life Is Beautiful
Set in the horrors of a Nazi concentration camp, this poignant film follows a father who does everything in his power to make the experience less troubling for his son. He pretends the whole thing is just a game. It's heartbreaking and sweet.
4. The Godfather
OK, so his business tactics were a little harsh (especially for anyone who loves horses). But Vito Corleone definitely loved his family, and he valued time with his children like nothing else.
5. Train To Busan
What is it about end-of-the-world storylines that brings out the best in cinema dads? At any rate, this Korean film profiles a dad who will do anything to protect his daughter from a sudden zombie outbreak. It may be one of the more heartfelt zombie movies out there.
6. The Pursuit Of Happyness
A struggling entrepreneur tries to make life better for his son while facing the struggles of homelessness. His care as a parent comes through in the performance, perhaps because Will and Jaden Smith are a real-life father and son.
7. The Lion King
I mean, is there a better father figure than Mufasa? He loves his son endlessly and does everything to prove it, even when some tough love is necessary.
8. Finding Nemo
Hey, these cartoon dads seem to know a thing or two about parenting. The clownfish Marlin goes on a big adventure to rescue his son, Nemo, even though adventure absolutely terrifies him.
9. Big Fish
OK, I honestly think this film deserves so much more recognition and praise. It's the story of a father's lifelong habit of telling tall tales, and his son's ability to finally find the truth behind these big fish stories. Oh, and it's also Tim Burton's turn at a Southern Gothic story, which is so fitting.
10. Field Of Dreams
I mean, if there's one movie that can make your own dad cry, it's probably this one. A farmer in Iowa comes to terms with his father's past by building a magical baseball diamond in his cornfield. It's a sweet, classic movie that's about so much more than a game.