Think your relationship with your dad is complicated at best? Think again. Chances are, whatever issues you have with good ol’ Daddy-o pales in comparison to the havoc these five patriarchs have wreaked on their offspring. This Father’s Day, while you celebrate the man that made you possible, take some time to also thank the heavens you weren’t raised by any of these five men:
1) Royal Tenenbaum
While he might not be as abusive as some of the other dads on this list, Royal Tenenbaum (played by Gene Hackman) dealt a more insidious kind of damage to his kids, the kind that turned once promising young ingénues into insecure, manic depressive adults. To make matters worse, Royal seeks retribution from his family by pretending to be dying from a terminal illness.
2) Darth Vader
Any time you start feeling sorry for yourself and the difficult childhood you had, think of Luke.
3) Daniel Plainview
Greedy, drunken, abusive; There Will Be Blood’s Daniel Plainview is as terrible as bad dads come. After adopted son HW is injured after an accident that causes him to go deaf, Plainview sends him away to a school for the deaf. After returning to request Plainview release him from his contract so he can start his own business elsewhere, Plainview disowns HW, dismissing him as nothing more than a “bastard in a basket.”
4) Lester Burnham
While American Beauty’s Lester Burnham gave a name to the sort of numbing suburban anhedonia that plagues many of us, he was also a terrible dad. Because nothing’s creepier than your Pops perving on your best friend.
5) Jack Torrance
After getting the winter caretaker gig for the mountain-isolated Overlook Hotel, together with his wife, Wendy, and son, Danny, Jack Torrance takes the job as an opportunity to work on a new novel. That is until, of course, weird shit starts happening, sending Jack into a murderous rage that culminates with him chasing Danny through a hedge maze while wielding an axe. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.
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