"Life... what a sweet, cruel, silly thing."
Piero is the son of Nedo, a former porter who spends half his time in prison. After the death of Piero's mother, his father took in a young woman. Piero grows up with his retarded brother between clotheslines and good-natured heavy boys. Giovanna, a literature teacher, takes him under her wing. She encourages him to read books, and even arranges for the working-class boy Piero to end up in a grammar school. There, the otherwise anything but brave Piero is quite tough compared to the rich kids. He befriends the eccentric rebel Tommaso, who introduces him to the unknown world of sit-ins, smoking joints and rappers. Piero also falls in love with his beautiful sister, Lisa.
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