Like father like son, from mother to daughter, sisters at heart, brothers in arms or blood brothers… As many expressions as possible scenarios. Blood or recomposed, united or broken up, the family sphere has so much to tell. Cinésérie.com has today decided to focus on the primordial place that the father figure can hold in cinema.
The attachment that a daughter can have for her father speaks to us as much as the tenderness that the son feels towards his mother, and vice versa. However, the feelings of abandonment, betrayal, injustice or even rejection are never very far away, lurking in the shadow of our more or less well-founded certainties. Let us turn more specifically to films where fatherhood holds a major place in the absence of the mother.
Kramer vs. Kramer
Signed Robert Benton, Kramer vs. Kramer (1979) tells the story of a drifting family. And for good reason ! Exasperated by the professional priorities of her husband Ted (Dustin Hoffman), Joanna Kramer (Meryl Streep) decides to leave them him and their son Billy (Justin Henry). The father must then reconcile overnight between her son’s education and his work of advertising. Despite the difficulties, he manages to forge a very strong relationship with Billy. But a few months later, Joanna is back. She starts legal proceedings to obtain custody of the child…
The drama attaches to the importance of the father figure through divorce, an innovative theme for the time. Hoffman is endearing and Streep as gentle as he is ruthless. And here we are transported in a whirlwind of emotions between moved smiles and tears in the eye throughout. A moving film where the father-son relationship is beautifully highlighted !
Released in 2001, the comedy August 15th produced by Patrick Alessandrin also focuses on the father figure. Max (Richard Berry), Raoul (Jean-Pierre Darroussin) and Vincent (Charles Berling) join their wives in La Baule on the weekend of August 15. Tired of a fortnight of rain and childcare, the wives, however, decided to take a few days of vacation alone.
Max, who had decided to leave his wife, must then managing her stepdaughter, a fairly independent teenager. Having no children, Raoul remains alone with his dog even though he had decided to quit smoking. Vincent to finish must learn to control your educated children in a very permissive way. All three will face everyday problems and immerse themselves in Reading the book The couple in question by Louise Abel. The latter encourages women to take back control of their lives. A trio of actors dropped, immersed in the experience with which the spectator can easily identify. A delight !
War of the Worlds
It was in 2005 that Steven Spielberg offered us his drama SF War of the Worlds. Divorced Docker, Ray Ferrier (Tom Cruise) maintains only episodic relationships with son Robbie (Justin Chatwin) and daughter Rachel (Dakota Fanning). A few minutes after her ex-wife and her husband had told her entrusted with custody of the children, a powerful thunderstorm breaks out. Soon, huge mechanical devices arise from beneath the earth and disintegrate human beings. Ray, Rachel and Robbie decide to go to Boston. All three cross a series of trials that will both unite and separate them.
The adaptation of the homonymous novel by HG Wells (1898) brilliantly deals with humanity in the face of a hostile alien race. Just as scared as his children but determined to save them at all costs, Tom Cruise is sublime as the father eager to make up for lost time. It is in the midst of chaos that relationships are forged and the power of fatherhood blossoms. The feelings unfold and the fear of losing the other inevitably swells. A must-see disaster movie.
Matt Ross unveiled his comedy-drama in 2016 Captain fantastic. In the United States, Ben (Viggo Mortensen) and Leslie Cash (Trin Miller) decided to give their six children an unconventional alternative education. They left everything to set up camp in the middle of the woods. Bodevan (George MacKay), Kielyr (Samantha Isler), Vespyr (Annalize Basso), Rellian (Nicholas Hamilton), Zaja (Shree Crooks) and Nai (Charlie Shotwell) grew up in this extraordinary setting. Children’s lives must be a source of permanent enrichment. The father figure takes particular care of it: physical training, self-sufficiency through hunting, culture in abundance, …