Last Sunday marked another Father’s Day. People were loading up Facebook with stories of their fathers and how much they loved them. It got me to thinking about all the fathers we see in movies. So here are my TOP 5: Questionable Fathers.
Some on the list will make sense and others you may shake your head at but read my reasons. I think you may just change your mind when I’m done.
Without further ado lets get to the list, but first a quick note on my rules.
- Must be a movie I have seen
- Must have a father figure
While there are many movies that feature dads, only a few feature questionable ones. With that in mind, I wanted to highlight some of the best (of the worst?).
Jack Torrance – The Shining (1980)
For a man who’s life was not looking good as he searched for work, Jack Torrance hits the jackpot. He gets a sweet job taking care of the Overlook Hotel during the winter. A perfect opportunity to work on his writing and finish his book. The only problem is that he begins to see ghosts and starts his long dissent into madness. The whole time, his ability to be a good father to young Danny becomes obviously more tenuous as he falls prey to the spirits and loses his sanity. By the end of the film, it is clear that Jack is the worst possible father and husband. There is zero empathy from any viewer for his final predicament.
Darth Vader – Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
The ultimate bad dad. Here is a guy with severe mother issues as well as his own father issues. The problem is that he role model was the Emperor. How could anyone turn out good when your best choice for a father figure is a Sith Lord? As a young Annikin Skywalker eventually turns into the villainous Darth Vader, he is unaware of his children and for good reason. He did wipe out the entire Jedi order. When he does come face to face with his daughter, he tortures her. When he meets his son, he tries to convince him to join him by trying to kill him. He then reveals the truth that he’s the kid’s father after cutting his hand off. Really? That’s your best opening to discuss your familial bonds? What a dick!
Rand Peltzer – Gremlins (1984)
Here’s a guy who invents, well, junk. Nothing he invents is overly impressive and for the most part is just junk. When he almost forgets his son’s Christmas present, what does he do? Goes to the local mall and grab him some socks? Nope, he goes to a sketchy area of Chinatown and gets him a rare and exotic animal. Where’s the city licensing department when you need them? So Rand brings home a Mogwai for Billy. He tells his kids there are only 3 rules… ummm he’s so cute… yeah Dad whatever, 3 rules got it. Billy then takes Gizmo as he’s named him and proceeds to do everything he was told not to do. I know, why would I blame Rand instead of Billy? Well it’s obvious that Billy gets his reckless disregard for the rules from his father’s reckless quest to invent useless things. Rand should have known his son was a total space case and not given him such a volatile creature. In the end, the Gremlins that are birthed from Gizmo destroy most of the town and kill a least a dozen people. Yeah, way to go Rand, that’s great parenting there.
Michael Sullivan Sr. – Road to Perdition (2002)
A loving family man who loves his wife and spending time with his kids when he can. What’s not to like here?…oh yeah, he’s a thug for the local mobster who is not above killing people. When his kids follow him and witness something they shouldn’t have, he has to take them on the run. Sure, they have a great adventure on the road but there is killing afoot that needs to happen. What kind of psychopath takes his kid on the road for a killing spree? Right, this kind. He tries to make us believe he’s a loving father and that may be the case but in the end, he is nothing more than a mass murderer. I know I wouldn’t want this kid playing with my children after being out with a father like that.
Jonathan Kent – Man of Steel (2013)
Gone is Pa Kent of yesteryear. Here he is replaced by a cold, calculating person who is so terrified of Clark being dissected that he keeps telling him not to use his powers to help anyone and to let people die. WHAAAAAATTTTTT?!?! Yep, that’s right, this dick from Kansas wants to keep Clark a secret. Even when his own life is in danger by a tornado which he could have been saved by Clark, he tells him no. Thus proving what a selfish bastard he really is. He doesn’t want to live in a world where his kid is getting closer and closer to revealing who he really is. By the end of the film, when Clark dons the Kal-El underwear from Krypton sent by his other dick of a dad, we think we may finally see a hero. Nope, wrong again as he takes on the cold logic of Jor-El and the heartlessness of Jonathan leading him to commit genocide and mass murder to defeat Zod before finally killing him to save 4 random people and put an end to all his screaming. You really begin to wonder why ANYONE would think that he is a hero, let alone a SUPER HERO. Thanks dads.
So there it is, my list. There are so many more that I could have added but I wanted to go with what I think of as the best representatives of the group. If you are looking for something to watch this weekend, why not watch these dads display their awesome parenting skills.
If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!