A vicious satire of the class system in the 1960s. Jimmy Brewster (Alan Bates) is a man with a burning ambition to do well in his life, and he believes the only thing that is holding him back is his class. He befriends the seedy, upper class Charlie (Denholm Elliot), and uses him to get himself accepted in the higher social circles. His new 'well bred' manner enables him to advance at work and in love, but he soon realises that Charlie could become a risk and proclaims that 'Charlie will have to go'. How far will Jimmy go to continue his climb up the social ladder?