In his feature film debut as director, Simon Stone has refurbished Henrik Ibsen's play The Wild Duck, setting it in the contemporary era and cutting loose all excess baggage. The Daughter is an explosive family drama that takes an unflinching look at the harm that can be done to family members and friends through gossip, adultery, and trying to play God in helping others or telling the truth.

Henry (Geoffrey Rush) is a self-absorbed mill owner in a small Australian town who announces that all jobs there will cease shortly due to the poor economy. Henry has asked his estranged and alcoholic son Christian (Paul Schneider) to serve as his best man in his upcoming marriage to Charlotte (Anna Torv), a much younger woman who served as his house-keeper. Christian arrives from America carrying inside a perpetual fuse of anger and resentment for his wealthy father whom he holds responsible for causing his mother's suicide. In addition, he bears the emotional scars of being completely cut off and ignored by his dad during his formative years.

Christian is glad to reconnect with his old friend Oliver (Ewen Leslie), one of the many men in town now looking for work. His wife Charlotte (Miranda Otto) is a schoolteacher. Oliver is close to his very smart teenage daughter Hedvig (Odessa Young) who is experiencing strong sexual feelings for her inexperienced boyfriend. Another person who is very close to her is Walter (Sam Neill), Oliver's father, who has set up a sanctuary for wounded or lost animals. Hedvig loves a wild duck who is determined to fly once again after her injured wings heal.

Christian hits bottom when the woman he is dating cancels her trip to be with him at his father's wedding. After drinking as much liquor as he can, he reveals a secret that has grave consequences for his friend and his wife, his father and his new bride, and the emotionally fragile Hedvig.

As director, Simon Stone draws out very convincing performances by the ensemble cast. Odessa Young struts her stuff as an unconventional adolescent who has almost all the adults around her cheering her on. But the roadblocks she has to go around put her in a dark place where no one ever thought she would be. After witnessing her journey, we sent her high and holy words of praise in hopes that, like the wild duck, she will fly away in a bold surge toward peace and freedom.