Comedy drama starring Peter O'Toole, set in Edwardian England. Since the death of his younger son in the Boer War, Horatio Fisk (O'Toole) has aged into a bitter and curmudgeonly misanthrope, distanced even from his good-natured older son, Henslowe (Jeremy Northam), who visits him weekly. To relieve the tedium of their regular outings, the pair decide to attend a lecture on the Transmigration of Souls delivered by a visiting Hindu Swami. There, they meet the eccentric and mysterious Dean Spanley (Sam Neill), with whom Fisk Jr strikes up a bizarre friendship following a series of chance meetings. Henslowe tempts the Dean to dinner with promises of a rare Hungarian Tokay wine, which he must then go to great lengths to procure, his quest leading him to resourceful rogue trader Wrather (Bryan Brown). From these unlikely encounters, a sequence of events conspire to unlock the heart of the stiff-upper-lipped Fisk Sr, and reveal the emotional truths buried in his past.