There’s no shortage of dads in the movies. But all too often, it seems that filmmakers fall back on the stereotypically goofy, bumbling dad—the kind who inspires head shaking and eye rolling from his wife and kids (not to mention everyone watching at home).
Although that breed of clueless patriarch certainly can be funny (see Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold in National Lampoon’s Vacation), the dads we really love are the ones who are thoughtful, caring, and truly committed to working hard at fatherhood. They’re not perfect, but that makes them all the more realistic and appealing—not to mention worthy role models.
Meet our top seven movie dads:
Dad: Marlin (Albert Brooks)
Movie: Finding Nemo (5+)
Why we love him: Not only does Marlin go way, way beyond his comfort zone to rescue his beloved son, Nemo, but he learns that one of the most important (and hardest) parts of being a parent is giving your child the opportunity to be independent.