Paul Giamatti and Michelle Williams star in this drama adapted from Harry Crews' novel about a man who tries to find some meaning in life by training a red-tailed hawk. George Gattling (Giamatti), a vehicle upholsterer from Gainesville, Florida, is struggling to find a sense of belonging. He takes care of his sister Precious (Rusty Schwimmer) and her autistic son Fred (Michael Pitt), who is also enamoured with hawks. After years of failing to successfully train one of these birds, George manages to capture a red-tailed hawk but in order to tame her, he will have to push himself to the limits, both mentally and physically. All the while psychology student Betty (Williams), who works for George, finds that his life makes an interesting study case.