Diagnosed with a terminal form of cancer, Patrick Foley has returned to his native Australia to die in the peace and quiet of the wilderness. His simple plan is complicated, however, when he meets Shawn Daley, a young boy who has just lost his parents in an accident, and takes him under his wing. Located far from any civilization, Patrick continues on his mission, but decides to teach Shawn the skills that he'll need to survive after his mentor is dead.
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This was one of William Holden's last films. He plays Patrick Foley, a jaded loner who is dying of cancer and decides to return to the outback where he was born. He has stopped taking his medicine and is at peace with his decision to die alone in the woods. On his journey, he notices a family camping. From a neighboring peak, Foley watches as Shawn (Schroder), a seven year old boy, removes a piece of wood from the tire of the family's camper because he was helping his father collect firewood. The camper rolls off the cliff it is parked next to with Shawn's parents inside. Shawn climbs down from the cliff only to realize his parents are dead. Foley has an ethical dilemma- take the stranded nine year old back to civilization, and lose his own wish to die where he was born, or continue his personal mission and let the boy die alone in the wilderness. He decides to take the boy with him, and teaches him along the way how to survive in the wilderness. A strong bond grows between the two, and when Foley finally dies, Shawn is equipped to travel out of the outback alone.