Guy Bennett (Rupert Everett) and Tommy Judd (Colin Firth) are two handsome young men attending an English boarding school during the 1930's. Bennett falls in love with James Harcourt (Cary Elwes) and the pair embark on a homosexual affair, but disdain to conceal their mutual affection. The hypocrisy of the other boys attending the school, many of whom are also having affairs, eventually drives the couple to extreme measures. Judd meanwhile, finds that as a Marxist, his beliefs are in direct opposition to the role he is given a school prefect. This award-winning coming-of-age drama was adapted from the play by Julian Mitchell, and is loosely based on the life of Guy Burgess.