Elling has lived with his mother all his life. Mom is the practical one, while Elling ponders the more theoretical aspects of life. He spends his time in their apartment reading books and looking at the neighbours through the living room window. Elling doesn't seem to need to be around others like most people. That's why Elling is less than enthusiastic when his mother suddenly decides to take her son on a beach vacation to Spain. Reluctantly, Elling agrees. After all, a lady at her age needs a good man by her side. But what Elling refuses to realize is that Mom is not only old, but also sick. Very sick. On her last vacation she tries to get Elling to see that life is bigger than their living room.