Returning from military service in Angola, a young Portuguese fisherman learns that his girl, in the absence of news from him, has married his brother. He is obliged to accept the situation and takes up with another girl who seeks any available means to free herself of poverty, which includes theft.
With this, his second film, Paulo Rocha confirms his promise as one of the more individual Portuguese film-makers. He handles love and life among poor fisherfolk with a tactful insight into their personalities, without forcing his plot or lecturing his audience. The drama of the encroaching sea counterpointed with the everyday work and humour of the villagers provides a documentary background to a tale which is a study in transition, and the acceptance of change in people as well as in their circumstances.