Father's Day is upon us again. Time to celebrate our old men everywhere who did their best to raise us right and steer us on the right path growing up. Movies have also had their fair share of fathers that were notable in film. This slideshow goes down the list of five notable fathers. Maybe watch one of these with your dad today:
CAVEAT LECTOR: THIS ARTICLE WILL DISCUSS SPOILERS OF FILMS POSTED IN THE TITLES.
Atticus Finch, To Kill a Mockingbird, 1962 (Gregory Peck)
Any list without Finch near the top is no list at all. From the page to the screen Atticus Finch has solidified himself as one of the most prolific dads in fiction. He's wise, caring and understanding and always steered his children to do the right thing. He also stands as a moral authority in a time and place when there was less of that around. He tried to defend Tom Robinson, and gave it his all, which is more than could have be expected in that time. Bolstered by a fantastic performance by Gregory Peck, Atticus becomes a fixture we all can try to aspire to.
Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker, Return of the Jedi, 1983 (James Earl Jones, David Prowse, Sebastian Shaw)
OK so he was the main villain for one of the most high profile franchises ever to be created. Sure he could force choke out inferiors like it was his day job (because it was kind of his day job) but he came around to being the good man he once was, eventually. It takes a certain kind of man to sacrifice himself for his son and take a full brunt of force lightning. His redemption arc is the main reason for is inclusion on this list.
The Old Man, A Christmas Story, 1983 (Darren McGavin)
The Old Man definitely had his own way of expressing himself, in a very profane manner. However his sons seemed to turn out alright. He had his interests and was apparently a good enough guy that he even won a major award (perhaps if he at displayed it with more humility). The Old Man also helped Ralphie acquire his dream gift, a Red Rider Carbine Action Range Model Air Rifle (with a compass! And a thing that tells time built right into the stock!) because in all fairness he had one when he was Ralphie's age. It his in this fairness and honest talk that he takes a spot on this list.
Calvin Jarret, Ordinary People, 1980 (Donald Sutherland)
The most dramatic choice on this list, Calvin loved both his sons equally, Conrad (Timothy Hutton) and Buck. This is more than can be said for his wife Beth (Mary Tyler Moore) who antagonizes Conrad after a suicide attempt and the death of Buck in a boating accident. Calvin gets points for trying to be understanding and defending his son against uncalled for attacks from Beth and he stays strong while dealing with all these issues himself. For his strength and understanding, Jarret makes this list, even as a very underrated choice.
Jor-El, Superman: The Movie, Man of Steel, 1978 & 2013 (Marlon Brando & Russell Crowe)
Jonathan Kent, "" (Glenn Ford & Kevin Costner)
Jor-El makes this list for some of the same reasons others did. He is caring and wise, like Atticus Finch. He has stregth in trying times like Calvin Jarret (though familial turmoil is nothing compared to knowing your planet is going to implode and there's nothing you can do about it because no one will listen). Also, in the end, he makes the sacrifice play to save his son and has hope for the future and the human race in accepting him. He tries to be there for little Kal-El (or Clark) even from beyond the grave.
And that's where Jonathan comes in. If not for Jonathan it is entirely possible that there might have been no Superman, or at least as we know him (many comic book authors have explored that point). Jonathan instilled the morals and developed the character of young Clark and raised him as his own despite being the farthest thing from it. For this, both men earn spots on this list.
So concludes the list, Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there! Maybe you can bond by watching one of these movies today!