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Film / Fly Away

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Fly Away is a 2011 American drama film written, directed, and produced by Janet Grillo.

Jeanne (Beth Broderick) is the mother of a sixteen-year-old autistic girl, Mandy (Ashley Rickards). Mandy has severe behavioral problems, and the principal of her school suggests that she would be better served in a different environment. Jeanne wrestles with the difficult decision of whether to institutionalize Mandy or not. Meanwhile, she falls in love with Tom (Greg Germann), a man she meets while walking her dog.

Fly Away contains examples of:

  • Affectionate Nickname: Jeanne sometimes calls Mandy Ladybug, or Bug.
  • Cry into Chest: Mandy cries into Jeanne's chest during a meltdown. Later, Jeanne cries into her ex-husband's chest over the possibility of institutionalizing Mandy.
  • Not a Morning Person: Mandy has to be practically dragged out of bed most mornings.
  • Parent with New Paramour: Tom is a Type 1. He quickly becomes fond of Mandy because of her enthusiasm, and Mandy likes him too.
  • Struggling Single Mother: Jeanne struggles to balance her job with taking care of Mandy. She works from home, which helps, but Mandy can be very disruptive.
  • Tantrum Throwing: Mandy throws things around the living room when she's upset about not getting ice cream. Later, she gets in trouble at school for throwing a desk at a boy.
  • Title Drop: Jeanne sings "Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home" to calm Mandy during her panic attacks.