A rather grumpy elderly spinster (Signoret) takes care of her disabled brother (Jean Rochefort) in an old-fashioned villa with a magnificent view of the Brittany coast. They realise only too well that they have no life outside of their existence together.
That is, until she secretly places a personal ad. The only response she gets, however, appears to be from her own brother. Under a fictitious name, she writes back. With Signoret – the older, the more beautiful – all emotions are expressed in a blink of the eye, a frown on the forehead, or a gesture with her hand.