With little time to spend with your family owing to busy lifestyles, a special day dedicated to celebrating the bond you share with them, especially your parents, is welcome. While there are many ways to do so, binge-watching movies together is always fun and allows you to spend quality time with them, indeed. So, here are some of the most brilliant Father’s Day movies you should add to your watchlist for 19 June 2022.
Classic father-child movies, ranging from all-time Hindi favourites such as Piku and Dangal to Hollywood laugh-riots like Father Of The Bride and Three Men And A Baby, or emotional roller coasters like The Pursuit of Happyness, you can pick your favourite to spend a cosy Sunday with your dad or even the entire family.
However, if you’re wondering why we celebrate this day, read on.
The history of Father’s Day
A father is probably every child’s first hero, and someone we all look up to. The origin of Father’s Day can be traced back to the 1900s in the United States. The idea occurred to Sonora Smart Dodd of Spokane, Washington, while listening to a sermon on Mother’s Day in 1909, which was already established as a holiday at the time. Dodd and her five siblings had lost their mother during childbirth, and it was their Civil War veteran father who singularly shouldered the responsibility of parenthood and homemaking.
Gradually, with the support of local religious leaders, the idea took flight, and it started being celebrated on 19 June 1910, which was the birth month of Dodd’s father. Today, to honour fathers all over the world, the third Sunday of June is observed as a special occasion every year. Although this day had religious connotations when it was first conceived, the modern rendition of Father’s Day is largely commercial, with people expressing their appreciation through gifts and other gestures.
Here are some of the best movies to watch on Father’s Day
To Kill A Mockingbird (1962)
Set in the era of the worldwide economic depression (1929 to 1939), To Kill A Mockingbird narrates the story of Atticus Finch (Gregory Peck), a respected lawyer and a widowed father, who fights against racism in the sleepy town of Maycomb, Alabama. The iconic film is based on Harper Lee’s 1960 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name.
When Finch is enlisted to defend an African-American man, Tom Robinson (Brock Peters), falsely accused of raping a white girl named Mayella Ewell, he promptly accepts the case. A strong believer in equality and fair treatment, he plans to publicly denounce racial injustice and oppression along the way.
The film also follows the lives of the lawyer’s children, Scout (Mary Badham) and Jem (Phillip Alford), who spend their days spying on their mysterious neighbour, Boo Radley (Robert Duvall). Their father’s gruelling trial exposes the children to the evils of racism and the harsh realities of the world at a young age.
The Godfather (1972)
The Oscar-winning cult-classic mafia drama is inspired by American author Mario Puzo’s 1969 namesake novel. The story revolves around an influential Italian-American crime family, headed by Don Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando). When it was time for his ageing father to retire from business, Michael (Al Pacino), the don’s youngest son, became the successor, and his life turns upside down.
Caught in the vicious cycle of betrayal, violence and crime, Michael plans to bring stability to the family and business, while aspiring to have a normal life with his wife, Kay (Diane Keaton).
Three Men and a Baby (1987)
Three young, successful and blissfully unmarried roommates from New York City, Peter (Tom Selleck), Michael (Steve Guttenberg) and Jack (Ted Danson) are taken aback when an unexpected guest arrives at their doorstep — an adorable infant with no instruction manual in sight.
The men, burdened with the responsibility of taking care of this baby girl, are forced to reform their devil-may-care bachelor lifestyle and embrace fatherhood. Peppered with unexpected twists and endless laughter, Three Men And A Baby is a light-hearted entertainer filled with moments, occasionally tugging the audience’s heartstrings.
Father of the Bride (1991)
George Banks (Steve Martin) and his wife Nina (Diane Keaton) live an idyllic life until their eldest daughter, Annie (Kimberly Williams), returns home from studying abroad and drops a bomb on them, with the news of her engagement.
The overprotective ‘father of the bride’ has a hard time letting her go, and he isn’t pleased with the prospect of her getting married. He is more upset when he discovers how much the wedding is going to cost them as not only do dads pay the bills lavishly but also emotionally when it comes to their daughters’ wedding.
The satirical comedy follows the joys and tribulations that George experiences while meeting his daughter’s in-laws and witnessing the wedding plans orchestrated by a fussy consultant (Martin Short) and his ostentatious assistant (BD Wong). This modern Spencer Tracy classic never fails to amuse with its comedy of errors and a plethora of emotions it aptly portrays.
Mrs. Doubtfire (1993)
A recently divorced Daniel Hillard (Robin Williams) yearns to reconnect with his estranged children and is distressed for not getting to spend time with them. With the help of his brother Frank’s (Harvey Fierstein) ingenious tricks, Daniel plots a painstaking ruse to gain access to his children, resulting in hilarious situations.
He disguises himself as an elderly British woman using make-up and costumes and cunningly gets employed as a nanny for his own children, at his ex-wife Miranda’s (Sally Field) house. Going by the name Mrs. Doubtfire, Daniel wins his children’s hearts and becomes a better father in the process. However, his secret is inevitably at risk of exposure. Both his worlds collide when Daniel and his nanny persona are expected to be present at a restaurant at the same time.
Finding Nemo (2003)
The story follows a six-year-old clownfish, Nemo (voiced by Alexander Gould), who gets separated from his overly cautious widowed father, Marlin (voiced by Albert Brooks), at the Great Barrier Reef and is freighted to Sydney, Australia. Nemo’s father embarks on a mission to rescue his only son with the help of a forgetful Blue Tang fish, Dory (voiced by Ellen DeGeneres).
However, Nemo is shipped away to the other side of the ocean and thrust into a dentist’s tacky office fish tank. Marlin braves sharks, jellyfish and a slew of dangers in the ocean to bring his son back home safely.
The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)
Doting father and San Francisco salesman Chris Gardner’s (Will Smith) life shatters after his wife Linda (Thandie Newton) leaves him, and he is evicted from their apartment with his five-year-old son (Jaden Smith), owing to acute financial troubles. However, the newly single dad is determined to turn his life around for the better and provide a stable life for his son.
This inspiring real-life story of the now multi-millionaire businessman follows the hardships he faces while trying to achieve his share of the coveted American dream. After Gardner loses all his savings by investing in portable bone-density scanners, a chance interaction with a successful Wall Street stockbroker, Jay Twistle (Brian Howe), lands him an unpaid internship at his prestigious brokerage firm. This uplifting rags-to-riches tale is one of the best father’s day movies to watch with your dad.
If you and your dad enjoy action-thriller films, this movie is your best bet. Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) is a highly-trained former US secret service agent. His worst nightmare comes true when his estranged teenage daughter, Kim (Maggie Grace), is kidnapped by human traffickers, while she is on a trip to Paris, France, with her best friend.
Making use of the skills mastered while he was in the black ops, the ex-government operative has only 96 hours to rescue his daughter, before she is lost forever in a world of drugs and prostitution. Filled with high-octane car chases and action-packed fight sequences, the film keeps you on the edge of your seat with its gut-wrenching storyline.
Ode To My Father (2014)
Dubbed the South Korean version of the American classic Forrest Gump, the film portrays the journey of a young man experiencing the ramifications of the tragic Korean War in the 1950s and highlights all the major historic events that shaped the country.
The story starts with refugees being rescued by the US Navy during the Hungnam evacuation of 1950. The protagonist Duk-soo’s (Hwang Jung-min) family has to break up during this mass exodus of northern families to the US-controlled south during the war. Amid the chaos, Duk-soo loses his sister Youngja (Yunjin Kim), so their father decides to stay back and look for her.
He asks Duk-soo to escort his mother and two younger siblings to safety and entrusts him with the responsibility of heading their family in his absence. Duk-soo vows to shoulder this mammoth task and promises to reunite the family.
Post that Duk-soo faces many adversities and misfortunes throughout the decades, including working in German coal mines in the 1960s and in war-stricken Vietnam in the 1970s. He also manages to pay for his brother’s education and his sister’s wedding. In the 1980s, he finally embarks on the impossible mission of finding his long-lost father and sister.
Directed by Shoojit Sircar, Piku focuses on an endearing relationship between a headstrong young woman, Piku (Deepika Padukone), an architect living in Delhi, and her eccentric and widowed father Bhaskor Bannerjee (Amitabh Bachchan). Their lives revolve around Piku’s hypochondriac father’s chronic constipation and digestion issues. Bhaskor’s obsession with his bowel movements often incites arguments, not only with his daughter but with their domestic help and relatives too.
Although Piku loves her father dearly and fills her deceased mother’s absence without any complaints, she often finds herself at loggerheads with him, owing to his idiosyncrasies. They go on an impromptu road trip to Kolkata with Rana Choudhary (Irrfan Khan), a cab service owner, who agrees to drive the father-daughter duo to their ancestral home.
This journey encourages Piku to see her father and their familial roots in a different light, which further cements their bond, despite their disparate ideologies. The film is an intelligently written tear-jerker, interspersed with funny moments that lighten the mood.
Dangal is an extraordinary true story about Mahavir Singh Phogat, who is a former wrestler with an unfulfilled dream of representing India at the international forum. Phogat (Aamir Khan), a national champion in wrestling, lives in a small town in Haryana. Despite being brilliant, he is forced to sacrifice his dream owing to his family’s financial condition. Mahavir longs for a son to fulfil his dream and win a gold medal for India.
But, when his wife, Daya (Sakshi Tanwar), births four daughters, he decides to fight the existing social stigmas and train his two daughters, Geeta (Fatima Sana Shaikh) and Babita (Sanya Malhotra), with the same hope. Their younger versions have been played by Zaira Wasim and Suhani Bhatnagar, respectively.
The film is loosely inspired by writer and director Lee Isaac Chung’s childhood and upbringing. The story follows a family of South Korean immigrants, who move from California to rural Arkansas in the United States during the 1980s, in search of livelihood.
Set against the backdrop of the peculiar and rugged landscape of Ozark, they learn the true value of family and home, through challenges which strengthen their bond.
Korean-American couple Jacob (Steven Yeun) and mother Monica (Yeri Han) work as chicken sexers at a hatchery, which entails separating baby chicks by gender. The family dreams of starting a 50-acre farm in the town and supplying Korean produce to vendors in the surrounding big cities like Dallas. It also includes their two American-born children — a mature girl named Anne (Noel Kate Cho) and a six-year-old named David (Alan S Kim).
In 2020, the world premiere of Minari received a warm reception and critical acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival and swept two awards. With several prestigious award nominations to its name, supporting actress Youn Yuh-jung, who played the children’s grandmother, Soon-ja, won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in 2021. The project also won the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
Angrezi Medium (2020)
Born and raised in Udaipur, Rajasthan, a single father and sweet shop owner Champak (Irrfan Khan) lives a simple life, spending his time squabbling with his brother, Gopi (Deepak Dobriyal). Chaos ensues when his only daughter, Tarika (Radhika Madan), a recent high-school graduate, dreams to escape her small-town life and explore the world.
She convinces her sceptical father to let her pursue higher education in London. Seeing the hefty tuition fees, Champak sets out on a mission to arrange funds against all odds and fulfil his daughter’s starry-eyed dream. In this process, he finds himself stuck in a series of misadventures, which renews and strengthens the father-daughter bond. Angrezi Medium is late actor Irrfan Khan’s last movie, making it even more special.
(Main and featured image credit: Father of the Bride/IMDb)