Top 5 High School Movie Dads
#5 – Bert Fischer (Rushmore)
I’ve never been sure exactly what Max Fischer’s dad (Seymour Cassel) did to deserve a kid like Max Fischer (Jason Schwartzman), but he handles his overconfident and underachieving offspring with a quiet aplomb, even when Max acts ashamed of the humble family profession. He’s a softly wise man with a solid work ethic, a fetching matching tartan flask and hat, and a mild resemblance to the old dude from Up, which is never a bad thing.
Top Parenting Moment: Bert lets Max work in the barber shop when he should be at school.
#4 – Dill (Easy A)
Easy A was a reminder that brilliant high school comedy didn’t disappear with the turn of the millennium, and it wasn’t just down to Lovely Lovely Emma Stone (her full name). Even if I didn’t adore every second Patricia Clarkson was on screen in anything, and have a crush on Stanley Tucci, these two would still be one of my favourite things about Easy A. They’re trusting, hilarious, they get you to spell out swear words with vegetables, and I want them to be my mum and dad.
Top Parenting Moment: Olive’s dad ‘reassures’ her that he, too, was gay once.
#3 – Noah Levenstein (American Pie)
Jim’s dad is about as supportive as a dad can be to a teenage boy before it gets crazy weird. He’s not exactly the smoothest guy around, but his zero awkwardness, full on honesty parenting approach helps Jim gather the confidence to conquer the ultimate teenage boy hurdle – sex with an actual real life girl. And for that, we must salute him.
Top Parenting Moment: Jim’s dad casually talks Jim through a wide selection of filthy mags without so much as a snigger.
#2 – Mel Horowitz (Clueless)
As far as testing teenage children go, Cher Horowitz and co are pretty high on the list. Overprivileged and overdressed, Alicia Silverstone’s perky blonde whirlwind of kneesocks and misguided charity nevertheless manages to win our hearts by being charmingly dippy, rather than mean. Her dad (Dan Hedaya) spends most of his time busy being a scary lawyer, but manages to fit in the occasional ten minutes being a scary dad.
Top Parenting Moment: Cher’s dad threatens to kill and bury Cher’s date, should anything happen to her.
#1 – Walter Stratford (10 Things I Hate About You)
(Brilliantly, whoever uploaded the video did so to indulge their interior design boner, bless them)
Another dad from the Clueless School of Overbearing Single Fatherhood, Katrina and Bianca spend their formative years at the behest of a paternal tour de force with a fantastically grim line in teenage childbirth anecdotes. Larry Miller’s perennially agitated father figure comes round to their way of thinking in the end, but in the process makes the prospect of hormonal daughters send all of us running headlong towards the birth control.
Top Parenting Moment: Bianca wears The Belly.
Award for ‘Nearly but not quite’ – James Court (Say Anything)
John Mahoney definitely wants the best for his brainiac daughter in Say Anything, but takes it way too far and ends up in prison for stealing a load of cash from old people. Also, she tells him when she loses her virginity, which is just plain creepy. At least she has Cusack. And Peter Gabriel.