Sex, avant-garde art, and Communist ideology are at the heart of this compelling historical drama. The film opens just as the Soviet Empire crumbles in 1989. As Louise mourns the death of her lover, she discovers the journal of Alfred Katz, an earnest Jewish radical and erstwhile poet who disappeared in 1938. With the aid of a history professor, Louise unravels what happened to Katz. In the feverish climate of pre-WWII Paris, Katz reveals himself as both a fervent Trotskyite and an unabashed romantic. At a party thrown by the noted surrealist Andre Breton, he meets Mila, a beautiful part-time model, part-time whore. As soon as he falls for her, he learns of her other lover Felix, a fervent Stalinist. Bored with politics, Mila eventually marries Katz. Soon betrayal and politics catch up with the poet.