Tonight's marathon takes the concept of a father and his child dynamic from the lineup titled When Adventures Lead To Reconnecting With Daddy and brings it to a whole new level with this theme showing how far a father is willing to go for his children. Whether it's to protect them from the harsh realities of life whether living in the Holocaust, a father who bypasses a court order and dresses up as a 60 year old woman to spend time with his kids, a father who will travel to a foreign country and stop at nothing to rescue his daughter, a father who would turn the tables on his sons kidnappers to ensure his son is returned home and safe, and a father who would take an emergency room and it's inhabitants hostage in order to make sure his son receives a heart before his current one fails, it is through these different story arcs where we witness the power of love that a father holds for his children and his stubborn refusal to take no for an answer. For tonight's beautiful and emotionally empowering marathon, we have on the following menu:
Finding Nemo 2003, The Pursuit Of Happyness 2006, Mrs Doubtfire 1993, Taken 2008, Random 1996, and John Q 2002.
Now this is a powerful marathon that demonstrates all the great traits about fatherhood in all its different forms. Being a father is not an easy job but being a father who doesn't take no for an answer and chooses to fight for his kid takes a great deal of courage. That courage shines through love and determination to protect their child no matter what happens to the parent. The case that this marathon builds is that there is no greater love than a father who will put everything on the line for their children, even going as far as being willing to give their own life to ensure that they live on. The first movie of the night demonstrates how far a father is willing to go for their child with the 2003 blockbuster and critically acclaimed animated movie titled Finding Nemo. Nominated for a total of four academy awards including Best Song, Best Screenplay, Best Animated Film, and Best Sound Editing, the story centers around a clownfish who sets out on a journey to retrieve his son named Nemo who was captured in the Great Barrier Reef and taken to Sydney. Finding Nemo is the perfect opening for this marathon because it starts off fresh, exciting, and begins the story arc with a fathers child going missing and the father going after him regardless of the dangers that lie within the trip.
The second movie of the lineup is the 1997 critically acclaimed comedy and drama titled Life Is Beautiful. Nominated for a total of seven academy awards and winner of three including Best Foreign Film, Best Music, and Best Actor for Roberto Benigni's unforgettable portrayal of a loving father whose forced to shield his son from reality when both are placed in a concentration camp in the Holocaust during World War ll. He uses wit, humor, and imagination to not only win over the heart of his wife but also to protect his son from the dangers of the camp, as well as sharing a bond that's special even if they may or may not survive the camp together. Life is Beautiful remains one of the most powerful father and son films ever made and can essentially be summed up as The Pursuit Of Happyness of Holocaust movies.
The third movie of the marathon is the 1993 blockbuster and Oscar winning comedy/drama for Best Makeup about a divorced father who dresses up as a 60 year old woman in order to bypass a court order to see his children without his ex wife knowing about it. The film Mrs Doubtfire starring Robin Williams takes the theme of a father going the extra mile for his kids to the next level in the realm of comedy. The character Robin Williams plays named Daniel admits to the judge who issued his court order that not being able to see his children is essentially him being told that he can't have air and that he had to see them. His hilarious act of changing identity to be a babysitter for his children is done out of both love and desperation to be with them. Compared to the first two movies, there is no national emergency or child going missing in this scenario but rather a father fighting to still be relevant in his children's life. Mrs Doubtfire remains one of the defining father movies and one of Robin Williams defining roles as a comedian and dramatic actor.
The fourth movie of the marathon is the action movie drama Taken starring Liam Neeson, Famke Janseen, and Maggie Grace. This film begins the drastic change in tone for the marathon with the theme remaining present and maintaining emotion but the lineup becoming more suspenseful and thrilling. In this above average action thriller and drama, Neeson plays a retired CIA agent whose struggling to get back into the life of his daughter who now lives with his ex wife. When his daughter gets taken when traveling to Paris, Neeson's character travels across Europe to save his daughter whose become apart of a drug trafficking ring. Taken is a film that's essentially about a man whose trying desperately to reconnect with his daughter and make up for lost time with her, but reacts when he's given no option but to fight for her. The film spawned two hugely inferior sequels that received bigger box office intakes but failed to achieve the same fame and quality as this film.
The fifth movie of the marathon is the Ron Howard blockbuster thrilled titled Ransom starring Mel Gibson, Gary Sinise, Rene Russo, and Delroy Lindo. The film centers around Gibson and Russo as parents who discover that their child has been kidnapped, leaving them with no choice but to corporate with the police until Gibson's character Tom comes up with a clever plan of turning the tables on the kidnappers. Ransom earned Gibsons fantastic performance a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor and spawned one of the most iconic movie moments of the 1990's with Gibson screaming at the top of his lungs at the kidnappers on the phone demanding "Give Me Back My Son." Gibson gives a career defining performance as a father whose given no options but to use his brains and fight to get his child back using the one thing they demand against them.
The sixth movie of the marathon is the epic conclusion to the lineup titled John Q starring Denzel Washington, James Woods, Kimberly Elise, Robert Duvall, and Ray Liotta in the title roles. The film centers around a man named John who takes the emergency room of his kids hospital hostage when his health insurance refuses to cover his sons heart transplant. John is presented as a loving husband and father figure like the other dads in this marathon but the twist is he takes matters into his own hands and goes against the system when it refuses to help his dying son. The tagline of the film says if you give a father no other opens then he has no choice. This marathon is centered around that one powerful tagline and shows how deep a fathers love for his children can go and what they will ultimately do for them.
So what are these movies trying to say marathon wise? When you put them all together, the message is that a bond between a father and his children is a force that cannot be broken or cut off. If a father truly cares for his children then he will always find a way to be prominent in their lives and protect them from whatever obstacles they may face. A father who dresses up like an old woman to spend time with his kids, a father who travels across the world to save his daughter, a father who is willing to pay a huge ransom for his child, and one who will take over an emergency room to ensure that his child gets a heart are fathers that every dad on the planet should aspire to be. Period.
Our remarkable fathers and kids for this evening: