By Mike Hammer
We love our dad. It’s a shame people have to get old and put in facilities where they can be properly cared for. At 43, we simply felt he just wasn’t pulling his weight…and besides…detox is something NOBODY has to be ashamed of anymore. With dad in isolation and Father’s Day coming up we thought we’d relive some of our most heart-wrencing, tender and sometimes hilarious father/son conversations…from the movies. To be honest our real conversations were kind of creepy.
Here are the best from the big screen:
Mr. Mom (1983)
Michael Keaton is Jack Butler, a frustrated, out-of-work dad who’s a bit overwhelmed with his new job as a fulltime dad. Clearly, he’s been watching a little too much daytime TV as he offers some sensitive advice to his thumb-sucking son…Kenny.
Jack Butler: I understand that you little guys start out with your woobies and you think they’re great… and they are, they are terrific. But pretty soon, a woobie isn’t enough. You’re out on the street trying to score an electric blanket, or maybe a quilt. And the next thing you know, you’re strung out on bedspreads Ken. That’s serious.
The Shining (1980)
Jack Nicholson in his signature role (until every role became the same role) as Jack Torrance a demented hotel caretaker with a killer case of cabin fever given to him by his ghostly guests….as he offers a little history lesson to his wife Wendy (Shelley Duvall) and son Danny (Danny Lloyd) about the area where they’ll be spending the winter.
Danny Torrance: What was the Donner Party?
Jack Torrance: They were a party of settlers in covered-wagon times. They got snowbound one winter in the mountains. They had to resort to cannibalism in order to stay alive.
Danny Torrance: You mean they ate each other up? Jack Torrance: They had to, in order to survive. Wendy Torrance: Jack… Danny Torrance: Don’t worry, Mom. I know all about cannibalism. I saw it on TV. Jack Torrance: See, it’s OK. He saw it on the television.
Memories of Me (1988)
Aging Alan King is Abe, the king of the Hollywood extras, and an embarrassment to his big-shot doctor son (Billy Crystal). He’s also always been the king of the one-liners as he shows in a night-night conversation with his little boy…who grows up to be the doc who desperately needs a shot of Abe’s hilarious bedside manner.
Young Abbie: Dad! I’m afraid to go to sleep!
Abe: Why are you afraid to go to sleep?
Young Abbie: What if I never wake up?
Abe: Then there’ll be more for me for breakfast.
James Coburn plays Glen Whitehouse, the most insenstive father since God left Jesus hanging on the cross. When his wife packs it in (probably as an escape strategy) he often these tender words of comfort to his long-suffering sons (played by Nick Nolte and Willem Dafoe) at his mother’s wake.
“Not a goddamn one of you is worth a hair on that good woman’s head!”
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
James Earl Jones’s asthmatic voice and some giant English dude’s body as the evil, nasty and downright mean Darth Vader revealing to Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker some disturbing news that indicates they may have to partner up in the three-legged race at the Empire’s next company picnic.
Darth Vader: If you only knew the power of the Dark Side. Obi-Wan never told you what happened to your father.
Luke: He told me enough! He told me *you* killed him!
Darth Vader: No. *I* am your father.
Luke: No. No. That’s not true. That’s impossible!
Darth Vader: Search your feelings, you *know* it to be true!
Field of Dreams (1987)
Kevin Costner is Ray Kinsella gets to play with the ghost of his long-dead and deeply-missed dead father, former major-league catcher, John Kinsella (Dwier Brown) at Cornfield Stadium: The only scene that straight guys admit that they cry during when they see.
Ray Kinsella: Hey… Dad? [John turns]
Ray Kinsella: [choked up] "You wanna have a catch?"
John Kinsella: I’d like that.
Life is Beautiful (1997)
Roberto Benigni is Guido…a devoted Italian father who is sent with his beloved wife and son to a concentration camp by the Nazis during World War II. In order to spare his son the ordeal, he has pretended the whole horrible experience is a game. When his boy drifts off to sleep, he keeps talking to him about how they will pull through this nightmare.
Guido: “You are such a good boy. You sleep now. Dream sweet dreams. Maybe we are both dreaming. Maybe this is all a dream, and in the morning, Mommy will wake us up with milk and cookies. Then, after we eat, I will make love to her two or three times. If I can.”
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
The chronology of casting Sean Connery as Connery is Dr. Henry Jones…father of Harrison Ford’ Indiana Jones, may have been a tad off as Connery is only TK years older than Ford, but the chemistry was bang on as this conversation between the two as they interrogated by the German SS indicates:
Principal SS Officer at Castle: I will take zuh book now.
Professor Henry Jones, Indiana Jones: Wuh-what b-book?
Principal SS Officer at Castle: You have zuh diary in your pocket.
Professor Henry Jones: You dolt! You think my son would be that stupid? That he would bring my diary all the way back here? [pause]
Professor Henry Jones: You didn’t, did you? [another pause]
Professor Henry Jones: You didn’t bring it, did you?
Indiana Jones: Well, uh…
Professor Henry Jones: You *did*!
Indiana Jones: Look, can we discuss this later?
Professor Henry Jones: I should have mailed it to the Marx Brothers!
The Great Santini (1979)
Robert Duvall plays Bull Meachum, a helluva Marine pilot and a helluva shitty dad…as witnessed as he challenges his son played by Caddyshack’s Michael O’Keefe to a little game of one-on-one…and winds up dribbling the ball off the boy’s head. But he DOES love the little buggers as he awkwardly demonstrates in this toast…which was slightly better than the one we delivered in our underpants at our best friend’s wedding!
Bull Meechum: I’d like to propose a toast, to my son. He is eighteen today. He has just ordered his first drink. Before he drinks it, I’d like to wish him a long life, a wife as fine as his mother, and a son as fine as he’s been. To my son!
National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983)
Chevy Chase is Clark Griswold a dad who will do anything to get his sick-of-the-trip family from Chicago to Wally World in seemingly unreachable Southern California (including leaving dead Aunt Edna’s on an unsuspecting relative’s front porch. To be fair…she deserved it.) Here he lets them no in no uncertain terms that there will be NO TURNING BACK. If there was…how could there be three sequels?
Clark: I think you’re all fucked in the head. We’re ten hours from the fucking fun park and you want to bail out. Well I’ll tell you something. This is no longer a vacation. It’s a quest. It’s a quest for fun. I’m gonna have fun and you’re gonna have fun. We’re all gonna have so much fucking fun we’ll need plastic surgeory to remove our goddamn smiles. You’ll be whistling ‘Zip-A-Dee Doo-Dah’ out of you’re @$$holes! I gotta be crazy! I’m on a pilgrimage to see a moose. Praise Marty Moose! Holy Sh*t!
Nothing In Common (1986)
Jackie Gleason stars as Max Basner, whose career as a traveling salesman is getting old and tired as he is…as he awkwardly tries to give new birth to a relationship with his wildly successful son, David (Tom Hanks). Did we mention it was an awkward attempt?
Max Basner: Your best friend is your dick.
David Basner: Now where did I learn that? Your best friend is your dick.
Max Basner: Great, maybe the four of us can get together and have lunch.
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