As WWII heats the Pacific waters, the Japanese are starting to clear people out of the islands. Walter Eckland, played by Cary Grant, is doing whatever he wants, wherever he wants. He hopes to be unaffected by the war, but when he finds an old friend who needs a favor, he is forced to help out.
Trevor Howard, as Commander Frank Houghton, Eckland’s long-time friend, seems adept at getting people to do what he wants. In order to avoid getting his boat confiscated by the military, Eckland agrees to report Japanese sightings. The men know each other well, and their concern for each other keeps them from being too harsh.
Feeling too crowded when he aids a proper woman in charge of several young girls, the last thing Eckland wants is to deal with is a group of females who were left behind on a nearby island. They borrow his clothing, share his food, and hide his whiskey. The woman, Leslie Caron as Catherine Freneau, wants to return the girls to their parents, but together they survive a couple of narrow escapes when the Japanese come too close.
None of the girls are unaffected by Walter’s charm. He’s an odd hero because he starts out a grumpy old man, but by the end of the movie, his girls had won a place in his heart.
Father Goose received a Best Original Screenplay Oscar. It was also nominated for Academy Awards for Best Film Editing and Best Sound.