The film takes place in an asylum. Although cut together in an ever maddening maelstrom, the film loosely tells the story of the janitor of the asylum. His wife is one of the patients. One day their daughter shows up at the asylum to tell her mother about her engagement. This sets off a number of subplots and flashbacks which stitch together the family history (for instance, why the mother is a patient and why the daughter is unaware of her father's job as a janitor).
The film does not contain intertitles, making it difficult to follow for audiences today. Showings in 1920s Japan would have included live narration by a storyteller or Benshi (弁士) as well as musical accompaniment.