Paul (Jean-Pierre Leaud) leaves his wealthy parents behind to go on a spiritual quest. He meets up with Yvan (Jean-Pierre Kalfon), leader of a vegetarian cult whose members survive by begging for food in uncomfortable robes. The religious fanatics draw the ire of local peasants when they are arrested for stealing eggs. Yvan butchers a goat and has a carnivore carnival orgy on the meat. Marianne (Bernadette Lafont) is one of the followers, and she and Paul go to a remote island to live off seaweed and vegetation, but a development company moves in to wreck the paradise. Paul is brokenhearted when Mariane goes off with one of the greedy developers in this symbolic film that decries the allure of the material world.