Charlotte Andergast, an internationally successful pianist, has just lost her husband Leonardo. His passing makes her decide to travel to her daughter Eva. There Charlotte also finds her second daughter, Helena, whom she had placed in a mental hospital, but who Eve chose to bring home to her. The tension between Charlotte and her daughter Eva is gradually being built during the visit until one evening when both say everything they have kept in mind. "It's a heavy and hugely pressing film, but it's one of Ingmar Bergman's cleanest works with uncompromising concentration on the essentials and without all the conjuring tricks" Åke Janzon writes in SvD about the film that was nominated for two Oscars: Best Original Screenplay and Best Actress.