Writer-lecturer Elle Reid (Lily Tomlin) has experienced more than her share of upheavals of late. With the passing of her soul mate, Violet, 18 months ago, Elle found herself saddled with an inconsolable sense of loss ‒ and a mountain of medical bills. Needless to say, these circumstances weighed quite heavily on her. But, as difficult as these trials were, little does she know that there are even more to come.
Carol Petersen (Blythe Danner) knows a lot about love and loss. Having been widowed 20 years earlier, when her adoring husband was tragically killed in a plane crash, the spry 70-something now spends most of her days on her own, living alone in a small but comfortable home. She has a close circle of card-playing friends who live in a nearby retirement community (June Squibb, Rhea Perlman, Mary Kay Place), and she periodically receives visits from her daughter, Kath (Malin Akerman). But the fear of being hurt again is so strong that she rarely ventures outside her limited daily routine. It’s all very controlled and very safe but also very lonely.