Based on Louis Bromfield's novel, unusual romances occur when characters transform following a natural disaster in India.
In 1938 India alcoholic artist Tom Ransome (George Brent) gives Dr. Rama Safti (Tyrone Power) a drink and is invited to an American mission by Mrs. Simon (Marjorie Rambeau) to meet her daughter Fern Simon (Brenda Joyce), who is 18 and wants to go away. Tom goes to the palace and finds his old friend Edwina (Mryna Loy) with her husband Albert Esketh (Nigel Bruce). Edwina says Albert loves only horses and money. Tom is excited to see Edwina again, and the rains begin; but Edwina is excited by Rama. Tom finds Fern in his house, and she refuses to go. Tom gives her dry clothes, and they kiss. Tom tells John to say nothing and take Fern home. She agrees to go, because she loves Tom. Edwina asks Rama to stay for tea and be her escort. Rama shows Edwina the music school and translates a love song. Tipsy Tom calls for Edwina, who says he is jealous. Ill Albert adds Rama's name to Edwina's list of men. At the party Edwina goes to Rama but says she may leave. An earthquake causes destruction, and the dam breaks, flooding the city. Albert and his valet argue and drown. Rama helps children. Fern paddles to the house of Tom and Edwina. Tom has Fern rest, and Edwina calls it "calf love." Tom takes Edwina in the boat to the mission and goes back for Fern. The boat sinks, and he swims. He lays down next to Fern.
The dying Maharajah (H. B. Warner) says he can count on Rama. The Maharani (Maria Ouspenskaya) declares an emergency, and Rama says there is plague and polluted water. The Maharani asks Tom to take charge for her. Edwina sees that Fern loves Tom and warns her he is selfish. Rev. Homer Smiley (Henry Travers) brings children home to Mrs. Smiley (Jane Darwell) and gives Fern a note that Tom wants her to assist him. Edwina volunteers to nurse in the hospital, and Miss MacDaid (Mary Nash) assigns her to clean. Rama sees Edwina with a bucket and tells MacDaid to train her for ward duty.
Weeks later Edwina makes rounds with Rama, and he thanks her. Sober Tom orders brandy sent to the hospital. A British general offers the Maharani help. She asks Tom to tell Edwina she is sending her on the plane, because Rama must govern. Edwina refuses to go, because she is in love for the first time. Tom says that Rama must choose between Ranchipur or her. Edwina replaces an ill servant and drinks the same water. Rama is glad that Edwina is leaving, because he wants her to be safe; he says she has changed from a selfish socialite and promises to find her later. Rama notices she has a fever, and Edwina faints. Rama tells Tom that Edwina has no will to live, and Tom tells Rama to remember his duty. Edwina gives Fern jewels and Tom a ring to marry Fern. Rama talks of the future as Edwina dies. In the final scene the Maharani has Rama lead his people.
This drama shows how a disaster can stimulate people
to act unselfishly in helping others, making the two budding romances
blossom in the passionate rainy season.