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Fly Away Home (1996)

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A father and daughter decide to attempt to lead a flock of orphaned Canada Geese south by air.



(autobiography), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
4,749 ( 255)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Thomas "Tom" Alden
David Alden
Barry Stickland
Glen Seifert
Deborah Verginella ...
Amy's Mother
General Hadfield
David Hemblen ...
Dr. Killian
Ken James ...
Nora Ballard ...
Sarena Paton ...
Carmen Lishman ...
Older Girl
Christi Hill ...
Older Girl
Judith Orban ...


Amy is only 13 years old when her mother is killed in an auto wreck in New Zealand. She goes to Canada to live with her father, an eccentric inventor whom she barely knows. Amy is miserable in her new life...that is until she discovers a nest of goose eggs that were abandoned when developers began tearing up a local forest. The eggs hatch and Amy becomes "Mama Goose". The young birds must fly south for the winter, but who will lead them there? With a pair of ultralight airplanes, Amy, her dad and their friends must find a way to do it... Written by Martin Lewison <lewison+@pitt.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A family of orphaned geese who lost their way. A 14 year old kid who will lead them home. To achieve the incredible, you have to attempt the impossible.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for an opening accident scene and some mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

13 September 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Father Goose  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$4,708,044 (USA) (13 September 1996)


$24,506,082 (USA) (10 January 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(8 channels)|


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Release of the film was delayed after a seven year-old girl, Jessica Dubroff, was killed at the controls of a small plane that crashed amidst a much-publicized transcontinental flight attempt, along with her father and flight instructor. See more »


Near the end of the movie, when Amy is about to land, the shadows of both Amy's plane and the crew's helicopter are visible. See more »


[first lines]
Thomas Alden: Amy? It's your dad.
Amy Alden: Dad?
Thomas Alden: I came down from Canada. I've come to take you home.
Amy Alden: Where's Mom?
Thomas Alden: Um...
Amy Alden: Mum died, didn't she?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Amy's birds return the following year to Amy's surprise as she wakes up one morning. See more »


Referenced in The Horse Whisperer (1998) See more »


10,000 Miles
Produced by Mark Isham, John Jennings, and Mary Chapin Carpenter
Performed by Mary Chapin Carpenter
Courtesy of Columbia Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

If you don't like family films, watch this instead
1 May 2001 | by (Scotland) – See all my reviews

People always seem to quote this movie as perfect family fair. I hate your typical Hollywood-produced family movie with ingratiatingly saccharine kids and perfect parents-with-a-message. Despite its plucked from the headlines (mostly) true story roots and workmanlike, rather than inspired scripting, this movie manages to transcend that due to a number of factors.

Beautiful cinematography of both the geese and southern Ontario. Decent supporting performances. But mostly due to the perfectly cast leads, Jeff Daniels and Anna Paquin, as the estranged father and daughter.

Everyone says Daniels is underrated, so I guess that means he isn't. He manages to make the father eccentric without ever falling into caricature.

Paquin creates a believable teen character, never straying from truth in favour of evoking our sympathy by being cute. Her naturalistic style of acting sometimes seems out of place with other more studied actors (e.g. the almost unwatchable Hurlyburly) but here she and Daniels and the minimal dialogue of the script work so well. Its about time someone gave her another decent lead role.

Finally, the opening credits sequence is a masterclass in storytelling economy, giving us the plot background without words, and setting up the whole downbeat tone of the movie with Mary Chapin Carpenter's haunting version of 10,000 Miles.

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