Evan (George C. Scott) and Marisa Granger (Jacqueline Bisset) are happily married despite the fact that Evan is thirty years older than his wife. Unlike many of their well-heeled Manhattan friends, whose lives seen to be dominated by poor relationships, bitter divorces and unhappy children, Evan and Marisa understand each other totally. Or so it seems.
Their lives are thrown into turmoil when Terry (Melissa Gilbert), Evan’s nineteen-year-old daughter from a previous marriage, returns home for summer vacation and confides to Marisa that she is pregnant. Terry doesn’t want her father to know she plans to have an abortion, certain he will object. Marisa calms Terry’s fears and persuades her to come clean with her dad. However, when Terry does tell her father, her suspicions are confirmed. Evan forbids the abortion, claiming it is tantamount to murder.
Meanwhile, quite unexpectedly, Marisa learns that she, too, has become pregnant for the first time. Evan now shifts 180 degrees and forbids his wife to bear the child. “They never planned to have children.” “He doesn’t want to be an “old” parent.” “He feels deceived.” Marisa is dumbfounded at Evan’s hypocrisy. And their relationship faces its first crisis as Marisa decides she wants the child, with or without Evan.
As this finely-tuned contemporary drama unfolds, ironically it is Terry who draws the family together enabling Evan and Marisa to reunite in the knowledge that their love, now strengthened, will be shared by their newborn child.