Margaret Hall lives a seemingly serene middle-class life in Tahoe City, California. Her husband, Tom, is a pilot on the aircraft carrier USS Constellation. She is startled to discover that her son Beau, a high school senior, has been having a sexual affair with 30 year-old Reno, Nevada night club owner Darby Reese. The affair becomes apparent when a drunken Beau wrecks his car returning from Reno one night. The next day, Margaret visits Darby's nightclub, The Deep End, to demand that he stay away from her son. Darby offers to stay away for $5,000. Margaret attempts to engage her son about his sexual orientation, to no avail. The two have an argument which culminates with Margaret forbidding Beau from visiting Reno again.

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