A figure of fierce determination, Sethe is a runaway slave struggling to carve out a simple existence with her children in rural Ohio, 1873. She is hindered, however, by the painful legacy of her former life, and the desperate measures to which she is driven to keep herself and her family from returning to it. Paul D, an old friend who comes to visit Sethe and whose understanding is tested by her household's shattering secrets. Sethe's daughter, Denver, is an embattled young woman who must free herself from the crippling grasp of her mother's choices. And Thandie Newton is Beloved. As Beloved grows to dominate Sethe's family, her devastating presence threatens to destroy the delicate balance of Sethe and Denver's existence.