In this somber, psychological drama about the conflict between a man's innermost feelings and a society that puts these feelings in a strait jacket, the mood is ruminative and depressing throughout. Alone, Viktor (Sven Wolter) heads off for his usual summer vacation to some islands where he can ostensibly look for antiques for his wife's shop in Stockholm. His marriage is a failure or worse -- he raped his wife before he left home, and he is obsessed by erotic imaginings. Once on the islands, he makes friends with a little girl whose mother is mentally disturbed and is kept by her husband in a locked room. The islanders are as tight-lipped as Viktor, and any communication is stiff and artificial. Viktor's own alienation begins to slip as he takes surprising, violent action to turn around the imprisoned mother's life -- but it does not work, nothing seems to work -- and his last actions indicate that he may not be willing to simply give up.