Aisle Seat: Have a daddy day with these films

Jason Armstrong picks his own six pack of good choices to pop in the DVD for dad on this Father’s Day.

  • Jun. 19, 2011 6:00 p.m.
Steve Martin and Kimberly Williams-Paisley play father and daughter in 1991’s Father of the Bride.

Steve Martin and Kimberly Williams-Paisley play father and daughter in 1991’s Father of the Bride.

When you compile any kind of “best of” list with films, the choices are usually a pretty clear cut process: a chainsaw-wielding, monster in hockey mask chasing a teen?  Halloween list. Festive folk decking the halls?  Christmas list.

But best movies for Father’s Day? Not so easy. Unlike other themes, it usually comes down to the characters and their paternal warmth… or, perhaps, lack thereof.

Here then is my own six pack of good choices to pop in the DVD for dad on this Father’s Day:

–– Father Of The Bride (1991)

I know, I know… the 1950 original featured Spencer Tracy, Elizabeth Taylor and was a fine film. But the roller coaster of emotions that Steve Martin goes through in the wonderful re-boot, from the stress of draining his wallet for his daughter’s chaotic nuptials, to that final, painful moment when he has to give his little girl away, well, let’s just say,

I haven’t seen this picture since welcoming my own daughter into the world, and for fear of sniffles n’ tears, I’m not sure I want to.

–– Mr. Mom (1983)

Before he became Batman, Michael Keaton starred as a man who gets fired from his job and becomes a stay-at-home pop while his wife goes to work.

Remarkably, the picture still holds up – and guys, isn’t it comforting to know that you’re not the only dude at war with the washing machine and vacuum cleaner?

–– Field Of Dreams (1989)

“Hey Dad; Wanna have a catch?” ‘Nuff said.

–– To Kill A Mockingbird (1962)

I add this classic to the list if only because Gregory Peck’s Atticus Finch is a father we can ALL aspire to be.

–– On Golden Pond (1981)

It ain’t exactly sunshine and rainbows for Henry Fonda and real-life daughter Jane Fonda in this Oscar winning drama, and maybe that’s why it’s a tale that continues to resonate with each passing generation; it’s honest.

It shows that, even though parents and kids climb over one hurdle after another, love CAN survive.

–– The Lion King (1994)

Inspired by Shakespeare but with an XXL heart all its own, this animated gem provided a pretty good lesson for little ones; go against what Dad says, trouble happens.

Thank you, Disney.

–– Jason Armstrong is The Morning Star’s film reviewer. Hs column, Aisle Seat, appears every Friday and Sunday.