It’s Father’s Day, so rent a movie to watch with your dad. Here’s my list of my favorite Father’s Day movies. By contemporary, I mean in the last 30 years.
10. Daddy Day Care
Directed by Steve Carr
Starring: Eddie Murphy
Comedy about a father who starts a day care.
9. The Champ
Directed by Franco Zeffirelli
Starring: Rick Schroder, Jon Voight, Faye Dunaway, Jack Warden
This version of the classic movie about a father of a boxer is better than the original 1938 version. Keep tissues handy. This is a tearjerker.
8. The Incredibles
Directed by Brad Bird
Starring: Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter
Great kid’s movie about the struggles of raising a family when you’re a superhero. Watch it with your kids, and you won’t have to buy them capes for their superhero costumes.
Directed by Gregory Holbilt
Starring: Dennis Quaid, James Caviezel
A great thriller movie about a father and son with a little sci-fi and time travel mixed in.
6. Life With Father
Directed by Michael Curtiz
Starring: William Powell, Irene Dunne, Elizabeth Taylor
Funny movie about the exasperations of fatherhood at the turn of the century. William Powell is a hoot in this, and Irene Dunne should have been a blond.
5. Pursuit of Happyness
Directed by Gabriele Muccino
Starring: Will Smith
One of the best movies about the perseverance of the human spirit ever made. This is based on the true story of Chris Gardner who went from rags to riches to make a life for his son.
Directed by Alex Kendrick
Starring: Alex Kendrick, Ken Bevel, Kevin Downs, Ben Davies, Robert Amaya, and Renee Jewel
When tragic loss hits, police officers learn what it means to be real men and real fathers to their children.
3. Three Godfathers
Directed by John Ford
Starring: John Wayne, Harry Carey Jr., Pedro Armenderez
This is a wonderful classic John Wayne movie where Wayne is an outlaw running from the law. He comes across a baby in the desert and becomes the child’s adoptive father. He risks his life and his freedom to save the child. There are other versions of this movie based on a short story, but this version is the best.
2. The Courtship of Eddie’s Father
Directed by Vincente Minnelli
Starring: Glenn Ford, Shirley Jones, Ron Howard, Stella Stevens
After his mother dies, a young boy plays matchmaker for his father. There was a TV show made in the 1960s based on this movie. It was good, but the movie was better. Don’t watch it unless you have tissues handy. It’s a real tearjerker
1. Cheaper By the Dozen
Directed by Walter Lang
Starring: Clifton Webb, Myna Loy, Jeanne Crain, Betty Lynn
This is the best Father’s Day movie of them all. It’s touching, funny, sad, and nostalgic. If you haven’t watched this earlier version, you’re in for a treat.
Honorable Mention: The Hardy Family Movies
No list of Father’s Day movies would be complete without the Andy Hardy series. Although these didn’t make the top ten, they are great classic movies about the adventures of a father and son. They founded the “Father Knows Best” genre. The Hardy Family Movies were made in the 1930’s and 1940’s and star Mickey Rooney with appearances in some movies of Judy Garland. They are well worth seeing.
- Lewis Stone as Judge James K. Hardy
- Mickey Rooney as Andy Hardy
- Cecilia Parker as Marian Hardy
- Fay Holden as Mrs. Emily Hardy
- Judy Garland as Betsy
Hardy Family Movies in chronological order:
- You’re Only Young Once (1937)
- Judge Hardy’s Children (1938)
- Love Finds Andy Hardy (1938)
- Out West with the Hardys (1938)
- The Hardys Ride High (1939)
- Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever (1939)
- Judge Hardy and Son (1939)
- Andy Hardy Meets Debutante (1940)
- Andy Hardy’s Private Secretary (1940)
- Life Begins for Andy Hardy (1941)
- The Courtship of Andy Hardy (1942)
- Andy Hardy’s Double Life (1942)
- Andy Hardy’s Blonde Trouble (1944)
- Love Laughs at Andy Hardy (1946)
- Andy Hardy Comes Home (1958)
So which movie is your favorite and why?