Weekend Cinema Listomania (Special Smash the Patriarchy! Edition)

on June 13, 2008 by Steve Simels

Well, it's Father's Day weekend, and as always, our thoughts turn to a lovely song written by Harry Ruby and made famous by Groucho Marx on the 1972 album An Evening With Groucho. (By the way, we apologize for the uncivil tone of this post's heading, but some of our best friends are Hillary supporters and they're feeling a little low, so we thought we'd try to cheer them up).

But we digress. In any event, herewith a song for the whole family.

Today, father, is Father's Day

And we're giving you a tie It's not much we know It's just our way of showing you We think you are a regular guy.

You say that it was nice of us to bother But it really was a pleasure to fuss For according to our mother You're our father, And that's good enough for us. Yes, that's good enough for us.

So Happy Father's Day everybody, and since things will be mostly quiet around here until Monday, here's an obviously relevant little project to tide us all over --

Most Memorable Screen Father, Either Monster or Mensch!!!!

Okay, here's our top of the head Top Five.

5. Burl Ives (Big Daddy) in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Richard Brooks -- 1958) "There ain't nuthin' more powerful than the smell of mendacity!" Vast quantities of scenery being masticated here.

4. John Duggan (Grandpa Sawyer) in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Tobe Hooper -- 1974) Who amongst us ever can forget the scene where senile Gramps tries and fails to bludgeon somebody to death while cannibal son Leatherface looks directly at the camera and says "That's my dad!"? Okay, I made that last part up.

3. Sir Laurence Olivier (Cantor Rabbinowitz) in The Jazz Singer (Richard Fleischer and Sidney J. Furie -- 1980) "Son...I haff no son." Possibly Olivier's worst ever performance, with the possible exception of the moment in The Betsy where he boinks a French chambermaid doggie-style.

2. Gregory Peck (Atticus Finch) in To Kill a Mockingbird (Robert Mulligan -- 1962) I don't think any kid has ever watched this without thinking "I wish Atticus was my dad."

And the number one most memorable screen pater familias, it's not even close so why are we even arguing, is ---

1. Billy Crystal (Lionel Carpenter) in Rabbit Test (Joan Rivers -- 1978) Billy Crystal's first starring role in a film, playing the world's first pregnant man. Amazing he ever worked again.

Awrighty, then -- who would your choices be?

Tags: Harry Ruby, An Evening With Groucho, Burl Ives, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Jazz Singer, To Kill a Mockingbird, Rabbit Test

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