Father’s Day is this Sunday, and if you’re able to spend it with your dad, you might be at a loss for things to do once you’ve gifted him the five-hundredth tie in his collection. If you and Dad are the stay-at-home-and-veg-out types, Netflix is your friend. They’ve got plenty of streaming options you can watch with your old man. And some of those options are actually about dads. Nothing beats a themed movie night.
I’ve looked through Netflix’s offerings and picked nine dad-centered movies in various genres and from different eras. So go ahead and give your Netflix account a break from binge-watching Orange is the New Black. That’s probably not the best choice to watch with your dad.
1. Paper Moon
This one’s a total classic. Real-life father and daughter Ryan O’Neal and Tatum O’Neal play a con man and a girl who may or may not be his daughter. The film’s shot in black and white and set during the Great Depression. It’s hilarious and touching and it earned Tatum an Oscar, making her the youngest winner ever at age 10.
2. Life is Beautiful
In the mood for a tearjerker? Put on Roberto Benigni’s movie about a Jewish Italian man who is put in a concentration camp with his son. He sets it up as a game for the boy to hide the horrible reality of their situation.
3. The Road
Another less-than-cheery choice, but a good one nonetheless. It’s about a father (Viggo Mortensen) and his son trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic society. It’s based on a Cormac McCarthy novel.
4. Cheaper by the Dozen
This isn’t the modern version with Steve Martin. I’m talking about original 1950 version. Of course, nowadays we see twelve kids and are all, “Pffft, have you heard of the Duggars?” Still, it’s good choice if you’re in the mood for a charming classic.
5. The Bicycle Thief
Another classic, this one from Italy. After World War II, a poor father and son search Rome for the father’s stolen bicycle, which he needs for work. It’s a great choice if your dad’s a movie buff.
If you and Dad are into quiet, ethereal indie films, this one from Sofia Coppola should be right up your alley. Stephen Dorff is a Hollywood actor whose daughter (Elle Fanning) comes to visit him at the Chateau Marmont.
7. Three Men and a Baby
Why have one dad when you can have three? And when they have ’80s hairstyles, it’s even more fun! Tom Selleck, Steve Guttenberg and Ted Danson are bachelors faced with caring for a baby that’s dropped on their doorstep and belongs to one of them.
8. Daddy Day Care
Sometimes you just need to watch a really stupid movie, and those can be even more fun when you watch them with your old man. This one stars Eddie Murphy as a guy who opens a day care in his house. If you hate it, you can just leave it as background noise while you reminisce about a time long ago when Eddie made good movies.
9. Instructions Not Included
If all the classics on this list are just too dated for you, check out this quirky movie from last year about a playboy who’s left with a baby to care for. He raises her while working as a stuntman.