2015 Father’s Day Gift Guide: Gadgets

Gadgets dominate our lives, so you can start your shopping with dad’s phone. If he has the latest and greatest, don’t bother. But if he’s still tied to his lame flip phone, then you can go with an iPhone or a new Android phone to get him into the 21st century.

If you’re looking for something a little different, however, we’ve put together some ideas for you. And for more great suggestions, be sure to check out the other categories in our Father’s Day gift guide.

Fitbit Charge HR

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There’s an ungodly number of fitness trackers these days, but after testing out some of the other major players in the game, the Fitbit Charge HR (available at Walmart) is hands-down the best of the bunch. The “HR” refers to the included heart rate monitor located on the underside of the band, which provides additional data like your daily resting heart rate the time spent in different heart rate zones (peak, cardio and fat burn) during exercise. The tracker is housed in a rubber watch band that’s a lot more comfortable than the bangle-styled Jawbone and Nike Fuelband, and it contains a small display screen that lets you cycle through the following data: clock, steps, heart rate, distance, calories burned and floors climbed. When used in conjunction with the mobile app or online dashboard, you can track specific workout sessions and monitor your sleeping habits (including time spent awake or in a restless state), and when paired with your phone via Bluetooth, the display shows Caller ID notifications. The Fitbit Charge HR also has pretty great battery life, so you can spend more time using it instead of waiting for it to charge, which is the whole point of the product in the first place.

SOUL Run Free Pro Headphones

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We’ve reviewed some of SOUL’s on-ear headphones in the past, and while they proved to be a solid alternative to the more popular brands on the market, they never really wowed us in any way. However, that’s not the case with their latest in-ear model, the Run Free Pro, which improves upon other likeminded wireless headphones by getting rid of that cumbersome earhook and utilizing an interchangeable ear lock system that provides a custom fit guaranteed to stay put no matter how active your lifestyle. The Run Free Pro is comfortable enough to be worn for long periods, and features wind noise reduction technology that allows runners to listen to music outdoors without interference. They’re also waterproof and sweat-resistant, while the sporty design smartly hides the mini USB charging port inside the buds. The integrated remote control can be a little difficult to operate blindly, but that’s a minor complaint about an otherwise great pair of in-ear headphones perfect for the dad who frequents the gym or marathon circuit.

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2015 Father’s Day Gift Guide: Gear

Guys are pretty easy to shop for. Most of the time, you can just get stuff you’d buy for yourself. Here’s a grab bag of Father’s Day gift ideas geared towards looking good and improving your daily life. And for more great suggestions, be sure to check out the other categories in our annual gift guide.

The “Cleveland” Shoe from Lebron James

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Lebron James has taken the Cleveland Cavaliers to the NBA Finals, and now, this new color scheme for his Lebron 12 men’s basketball shoe from Nike is flying off the shelves, especially in areas rooting for James’ hometown team. If your dad still appreciates a cool pair of sneakers and likes to play hoops, you’d be hard-pressed to find a cooler gift than these vibrant kicks. Of course, there are other color choices as well, but this pair featuring the Cavs colors may be your best bet… unless he’s a Bulls or Warriors fan!

Shinola Watches

While everyone else may be talking about a new watch from Apple, there are incredible watches made right here in America that you should be checking out as well. The Runwell model (pictured below) is a classic, hand-assembled watch made in Detroit by Shinola. If dad appreciates stuff made in America, then this could be a great gift idea. Features of the watch include a sapphire crystal, Super-LumiNova printed dial details, a solid stainless steel case with screw down crown, three hands and date indicator driven by the Detroit-built Argonite 1069 high-accuracy quartz movement, and a laser-etched case and etched lightning bolt on the buckle. Anyone who values attention to detail and beautiful styling will love these watches. Browse the Shinola site for watches, and then check out their leather goods as well, along with the bicycles!

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2015 Father’s Day Gift Guide: Entertainment

Everyone loves watching a great movie or TV series, so we’ve compiled some of our favorite releases from the past few months that most guys will enjoy. And for more great suggestions, be sure to check out the other categories in our Father’s Day gift guide.

The Wire: The Complete Series

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Now that “Breaking Bad” has completed its remarkable five-year run, there’s a good chance that some people are rethinking their decision to christen “The Wire” as the best show in television history, but for our money, the HBO crime drama still owns the top spot. A gritty, intelligent, complex and well-acted series that fired on all cylinders throughout most of its five seasons, “The Wire” represents TV drama at its finest, anchored by a fantastic ensemble cast that rivals “Game of Thrones” in its sheer size and ability to squeeze great performances out of even the smallest roles. Digitally re-mastered in a new 16:9 widescreen ratio and broadcast in its entirety earlier this year, the complete series makes its Blu-ray debut just in time for Father’s Day. Though some have argued that the change from the original 4:3 ratio disrespects the show’s intended visual composition, it’s something that will likely only bother a select few, because it looks absolutely stunning. Many of the included extras have been carried over from the previous DVD release, but there is a brand new cast and crew Q&A from the Paley Center for Media’s reunion panel that’s a must-watch for all fans of the show.

Frank Sinatra: Five Film Collection

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It’s not the first time that a studio has released a Frank Sinatra movie collection in conjunction with his birthday, but Warner Bros.’ five-disc set – which spans two decades in the singer-turned-actor’s film career – is the first one to ever be released on Blu-ray. Featuring some of Sinatra’s finest work in front of the camera, the collection includes a trio of musicals (“Anchors Aweigh,” “On the Town” and “Guys and Dolls”) and two of the best crime movies of the era (“Ocean’s 11” and “Robin and the 7 Hoods”), three of which have been newly re-mastered for their Blu-ray debut. Though the fact that it only contains Warner Bros.-owned titles means that it’s not a definitive collection by any stretch of the imagination, this is still a great gift for any fan of the Chairman of the Board. Plus, it comes with hours of bonus material, like vintage MGM shorts and cartoons, audio commentary by Frank Sinatra Jr. on “Robin and the 7 Hoods” and “Ocean’s 11” (alongside Angie Dickinson), featurettes for “Guys and Dolls,” and a 32-page photo book with movie stills and behind-the-scenes photos from each film.

Goodfellas: 25th Anniversary Edition

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Though Martin Scorsese finally won his first Oscar for the 2006 crime thriller, “The Departed,” after decades of being snubbed, it should have happened 16 years earlier with “Goodfellas,” which is hands-down one of the greatest gangster movies ever made. The film has it all – sex, drugs, rock ‘n roll, and even a little violence – but what’s most impressive is the manner in which Scorsese pieces it all together, breaking a number of traditional filmmaking rules along the way. Everything about the movie is top-notch, from Scorsese’s daring direction, to Nicholas Pileggi’s hard-hitting script (an adaption of his book, “Wiseguy”), to the rock-influenced soundtrack, to some fantastic performances by Ray Liotta, Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, who won an Oscar for his portrayal of psychotic gangster Tommy DeVito. The two-disc 25th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray includes all of the previous extras from the 2010 release – including a pair of audio commentaries and a behind-the-scenes featurette – as well as an all-new retrospective, a 36-page photo book with an accompanying essay, and a letter from Scorsese.

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5 Classic Cars We Love

Americans have had a love affair with the automobile that has helped to define our culture. This love of cars has also defined many father-son relationships as dads around the country passed on their passions for great cars to their sons.

With Father’s Day approaching we’re looking back at some great cars that have inspired millions of fathers and sons over the years, and how you and your dad can relive some of that passion with the Exotic Car Collection by Enterprise which has an amazing selection of exotic cars available for rent.

Also, make sure to see the end of this post with a special giveaway!

1972 Corvette Stingray Convertible

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I had the opportunity to drive this beautiful Corvette last year at an event promoting the brand-new 2014 Corvette Sting Ray. This classic beauty was the sports car everyone wanted when I was a kid, and I would always joke around with my dad that I wanted a Corvette. There have been many classic Corvette designs over the years, but the curvy design of the C3 Corvettes are a common favorite. 1972 was the last year of the chrome bumpers for the Corvette, giving the car a more classic look. The 5.7L V-8 engine didn’t have the high horsepower ratings of previous generations from the 1960s, but this 4-speed Vette still had some serious straight-line acceleration.

As I mentioned in my review, the all-new Corvette Stingray more than carries on the Corvette tradition. The car is beautiful and the performance is amazing. Driving this car is a truly memorable experience and both the coupe and the convertible are available with the Enterprise Exotic Car Collection. If you’re looking for a great gift for dad it’s hard to beat some road time with the new Corvette.

1967 Cadillac Eldorado

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My dad always wanted to own a Cadillac, but he cared more about saving for our education so he went with other big cars from GM that were a little less expensive. This 1967 Cadillac Eldorado is a stunning example of the long and powerful American cars of the late 1960s and early 1970s. They were big and beautiful with huge engines and luxurious interiors and many Americans long for that era.

Lovers of big Cadillacs now turn to the huge and luxurious SUVs, and you can get an impressive Cadillac Escalade ESV through the Enterprise Exotic Car Collection, along with large luxury sedans from a wide variety of brands from Mercedes to Lexus.

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2014 Father’s Day Gift Guide: Entertainment

Everyone loves watching a great movie or TV series, so we’ve compiled some of our favorite releases from the past year that just about guy will enjoy. And for more gift ideas, be sure to check out the other categories in our Father’s Day gift guide.

The Wolf of Wall Street

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It’s been a while since Martin Scorsese’s last truly great film, but the director has rebounded in style with “The Wolf of Wall Street,” highlighted by Terrence Winter’s hilarious script and Leonard DiCaprio’s brilliant turn as Jordan Belfort. You’ve never seen the actor quite like this before, and he’s in top form as the notorious stockbroker, delivering what is arguably his best performance with Scorsese yet. The rest of the cast is great as well, especially Jonah Hill in another award-worthy turn, up-and-comer Margot Robbie and Matthew McConaughey in a short but memorable cameo. Loud, flashy and totally obscene, the movie is like a private tour through Belfort’s excessive, hard-partying lifestyle, including easily one of the greatest sequences of the year. (Hint: it involves a highly potent strain of Quaaludes.) Though it’s a little too long for its own good, the characters are so magnetic and the dialogue so fast and funny that “The Wolf of Wall Street” is hard not to enjoy. It’s Scorsese’s best film in years, and one that will only get better with time.

Gravity

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It’s been six years since Alfonso Cuarón’s last feature film – the criminally underrated “Children of Men” – but his outer space survival thriller was well worth the wait. “Gravity” is the kind of movie that will likely change the way films are made in the future. From the stunning, single-take opening sequence that lasts more than 12 minutes, to the numerous set pieces throughout, “Gravity” is such a technical marvel that it looks like Cuarón shot the whole damn thing in space. Though the story is ridiculously simple, not a single second of its 91-minute runtime is wasted, extracting so much suspense from the film’s terrifying setup that the brief injections of comedy (courtesy of George Clooney’s easygoing astronaut) are a welcome reprieve from the almost unrelenting intensity. Sandra Bullock delivers one of the best performances of her career as the rookie astronaut caught up in a seemingly impossible situation, but the real star of “Gravity” is Cuarón himself, and he deserves every bit of praise for creating what can only be described as pure movie magic.

Game of Thrones: The Complete Third Season

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Creators David Benioff and D.B Weiss have stated numerous times that they set Season Three as the unofficial benchmark as to whether or not the show would be a success, and it’s easy to see why, because it showcases the full complexity and richness of the universe that they inherited from George R.R. Martin. The third season expands its scope even further than the previous year, with several new characters quickly making their mark, and old ones (like Nikolaj Coster-Waldau’s Jamie Lannister, one of the season’s MVPs) continuing to evolve within that moral gray area where “Game of Thrones” thrives. It also featured some of the most shocking story developments to date, perhaps none more so than Episode 9’s infamous Red Wedding, which made Ned Stark’s beheading look like child’s play in comparison and was without a doubt one of the biggest television events of last year. The audience reaction to that episode is very telling of the show’s pop cultural footprint, and when the writing and acting is this good, it’s no surprise why its popularity continues to grow.

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