Howard is mild-mannered and slightly simple-minded, with a habit of picking up teenage hitchhikers while driving his delivery routes. Sometimes the girls admit to being runaways, and if they claim to hate their mothers it drives Howard into a violent frenzy; his sister ran away from home years ago and was never heard from again, causing his desperate, addled mother to tighten her hold on him. Howard never remembers raping his victims or strangling them with wire coat hangers, though his boss does notice missed deliveries and late arrivals. He becomes increasingly careless during these violent fits, strewing clues that the police are unable to piece together. Howard starts feeling sick and uneasy but can't understand why, suffering nightmares and headaches. His job is in jeopardy and the stress overwhelms him, so when he picks up an 11-year-old girl alone on the interstate, he makes a final mistake.
Diana is a Roman wife happily married to sympathetic Paolo but she is keen on playing benign games of seduction with other men while resisting the advances of chic lingerie shop owner Silvio and she narrates her adventures to Paolo in order to stimulate their otherwise monotonous sexual life.
9-year old Karl Lejon, 'Skorpan' is suffering from tuberculosis and knows that he will die soon. But his older brother Jonathan tries to comfort him by promising that they one day will meet in Nangijala, a magic country beyond the stars.
Candleshoe is a 1977 Walt Disney Productions live action movie based on the Michael Innes novel Christmas at Candleshoe and starring Jodie Foster, Helen Hayes in her last screen appearance, David Niven and Leo McKern.