There are Godfather movies (I, II, and III) and good-father movies. My friend BB posted on Facebook yesterday bemoaning the lack of good fathers in films today, asking: “When was the last time that a father was shown as anything other than a buffoon?” True, men can be morons in everything from movies to beer ads. The only funny woman I can think of in commercials these days is that daffy gal in the Progressive ads. But guys in ads? Almost all of them are idiots.
Still, I think my friend overstates the case. In movies anyway, I think there have been some great dads, even in recent years. Here are a few to consider:
Juno. C’mon BB, my wise Catholic friend! Here’s a pro-life movie with not one but two good fathers! J. K. Simmons (pictured, above) is the totally believable, totally understanding father of a pregnant teen (Ellen Page), and let’s not forget Michael Cera, who is nothing less than the father of her child. A pretty good dad, too, for a goofy, clueless kid.
Biutiful. Of the films I have seen in the past 18 months, this is the one that stays with me. Javier Bardem’s character may not be good in a strictly moralistic sense, but when he contracts cancer and faces leaving his children, he is a very good and moving dad indeed.
Little Miss Sunshine. Admittedly, Greg Kinnear is a total jerk for the first 90 percent of the movie, but who can forget him dancing with his daughter Olive at the beauty pageant? Like Bardem’s character in Biutiful, he is a father redeemed by the love of his child.
here’s my review.
The Pursuit of Happyness. What’s not to like—or admire—about Will Smith as a father forced to live in the street with his son after his wife leaves him and he loses his house, his bank account, and credit cards?
True Grit. Where’s the dad in this film, you ask? He’s dead. But he’s the sole motivation for the action of the film. He’s the reason his daughter (Hailee Steinfeld) is looking for his killer. He must have been a good dad, too, right?
There, that’s half a dozen. Admittedly, I couldn’t get to ten on my own, but you can help. Any other ideas? As a father myself, I need plenty of good examples.