In a small town in 1970's southern Germany, Michaela, 21, has grown up in a deeply religious family. Despite her long battle with epilepsy, Michaela burns to leave home and study at the university. There, she experiences her first taste of freedom, her budding love for Stefan and her friendship with Hanna. Slowly, her protective shell of faith and family starts to crack open, but it results in her having a breakdown. Not a normal epileptic attack, but a frightening onrush of grotesque faces and voices. Afraid of being sent back home to her family, Michaela seeks help from a priest who reinforces her conviction that she is possessed. Although Stefan and Hanna encourage her to seek psychiatric help, they are unable to break through the dense religious and moral ties binding Michaela to her family.