The dads of A24 have had a notoriously difficult go of it; on average, they’re about half as likely to survive as the family dog and twice as likely to be set on fire.
Yet when the smoke clears, what we’re left with is a group of dads (some, just in spirit) who are trying their best to do right by the kids in their lives. It’s in their honor that we celebrate this Father’s Day and pose the question: who’s your A24 daddy?
1. Steve (Gabriel Byrne) from Hereditary
- The quiet, long-suffering type who stays true to his family through the very worst of it: the loss of a child, an intergenerational curse, his wife’s miniatures.
- When a fight breaks out over dinner, he’s the one looking on in disbelief as others at the table scream and/or sob, knowing that his roast chicken (lovingly prepared) will be going to waste that night.
- Not that he’s unfeeling. His emotional breakdowns are more likely to hit when he’s alone—often in the car, mid-day, surrounded by passing traffic.
- Never once self-medicates, even with immediate access to an all-you-can-eat benzo buffet courtesy of his psychiatry practice.
Key Dad Line: “Jesus fuck! Why haven’t you called the police?!”
2. James Sr. (Rob Morgan) from The Last Black Man in San Francisco
- Most likely to hold conversation while simultaneously enjoying a Dad Snack™ (ie. unshelled nuts or seeds, anything that demands an inordinate amount of effort to be eaten).
- Anti-establishment. Teaches you everything about ‘the system’ for the express purpose of empowering you to dismantle it—all while smoothly running a bootleg DVD business.
- The truth-telling type: do not ask for his opinion unless you’ve taken a few days to emotionally fortify. His indelicate touch is meant to steel you for an indelicate world.
- Knows when to show up. Maybe he thinks your play is dumb as shit, maybe he said as much; but when the curtains finally open and you step on stage, he’s sitting front-center in the crowd, wearing his Sunday best.
Key Dad Line: “That’s not your black ass neighborhood.”
3. Haiyan (Tzi Ma) from The Farewell
- A performer, through and through. He’s the undisputed king of the Dad Joke (lives for a long buildup and middling punchline) and even after all these years, he’ll still show your ass up at karaoke.
- Has the preternatural ability to fixate on exactly the thing you don’t want to talk about and address it as bluntly as possible. Especially as it pertains to your personal finances.
- Harbors a deep appreciation for the finer things in life—good food, good soju, good naps, good company—and a known tendency to over-indulge. Most likely to black out in khakis.
- His love runs deep, and his efforts to show it are only made sweeter for their clumsiness.
Key Dad Line: “How’s your money? Can you afford this trip? Do you need help?”
4. Howard (Adam Sandler) from Uncut Gems
- The anti-helicopter parent. He’ll be there for holidays, select family functions, and Act I of your school play—but otherwise you’re on your own.
- He’s young at heart (or, to some, ‘stunted in emotional maturity’) and encouraging of even the most whimsical material desires. You want to sleep in a light-up race car? Say no more.
- Every moment spent in his company is an opportunity to step out of your comfort zone. Why not just knock on a total stranger’s door and ask to take a shit in their house? We are here to seek growth.
- Most likely to have taken a picture with your favorite celebrity. Also most likely to have gotten into a physical fight with that celebrity.
Key Dad Line: “We’re saving up for a big trip next winter. Want to take the kids to Europe, do a little culture. My kids are becoming morons.”
5. Bobby (Willem Dafoe) from The Florida Project
- Has major B.D.E. aka Big Dad Energy. Most evident when he crosses his arms and lets out a long, world-weary sigh that wordlessly conveys years of unspoken disappointment.
- Beneath the stern exterior—clipped-on walkie, conspicuously straight-leg Wranglers—there beats a big, soft heart with love to spare. Even for the local birds.
- Don’t let his placid demeanor fool you: he will quite literally throw down if necessary, especially in defense of his friends and family. His is not a vending machine to be trifled with.
- Not a landlord.
Key Dad Line: [speaking to a flock of birds] “No harm, no foul. No fowl! There’s a joke in there somewhere. Alright, fellas. Have a good day.”
6. Juan (Mahershala Ali) from Moonlight
- Every bit the king that the crown-shaped air freshener on his dashboard would suggest.
- Knows that he won’t always be there to help you through rough waters, so he makes it his purpose to show you how to swim.
- Whether at a fast food joint or in his own home, there’s always a seat at his table for the ones he loves. Even if he’s never actually doing the cooking.
- The only man on this list who can pull off diamond studs. Sorry, Howard.
Key Dad Line: “At some point, you gotta decide for yourself who you gonna be.”
7. Mark (Josh Hamilton) from Eighth Grade
- A true ride-or-die for his people. When asked if he’s available to help “burn something in the backyard,” he immediately answers "yes." No hesitation, no follow-up questions.
- Local single moms love him.
- Dangerously close to having Golden Retriever-levels of eager, unmitigated love for his family—resulting in an emotional fireside speech that rivals the dad monologue from Call Me By Your Name.
- Personal space is a loosely defined concept when concerning those he loves. Let the record show that creeping is still creeping, even if you’re tailing someone through a mall “for their own good.”
Key Dad Line: “If you grow up to have a daughter like you, she will make you so, so happy.”
8. Monte (Robert Pattinson) from High Life
- His devotion to his loved ones is absolutely next level; he’ll be there for literally every step taken, every word uttered, so rapt with attention that it’ll feel like there’s nobody else in the world.
- Safe to say he really loves dogs, given he’s in space prison for avenging the murder of one.
- Even after over a decade of processed food, arduous spaceship labor, and being a single father, he still manages to look pretty damn good shirtless in overalls.
- You could say he approaches fatherhood in the ‘biblical way.’
Key Dad Line: “You don’t drink your own piss, Willow, and you don’t eat your own shit. You just don’t. That’s called a taboo. Ta-boo.”