Young adolescent Sam Franks (Lindley Joiner) spends his summers away from school with his physician father (Peter Curtin), whose schedule barely allows for quality father-son time. Therefore, Sam idles away most of his time with neighbor Maurie Lewis (Frank Gallacher) and Maurie's handicapped daughter Silvy (Brooke Harman), who also happens to be Sam's best friend. One night following a dance, Sam and Silvy kiss for the first time, and go down to the nearby river. As the two are lazily floating in the river and watching the night sky, Silvy disappears underwater and her body is never found. Several years afterwards, an adult Sam (Guy Pearce) -- who has gone on to become a psychiatry instructor -- journeys back to the same town for the funeral of his recently deceased father. While en route, Sam encounters Ruby (Helena Bonham Carter), a mysterious young woman he is forced to rescue from the same river that Silvy had disappeared in. After bringing Ruby to his father's house to calm her down after the incident, Sam begins to feel a strangely familiar comfortableness with her and the two begin to visit all of Sam's and Silvy's old stomping grounds.