The keywords for this film are comradeship and trust among the youth of a small village on the Baltic which is firmly under the control of an innkeeper, Ottokar Waschke. Waschke owns the only tugboat in town, which the town's fishermen, who make up the majority of the employed, need to transport their catch. So he forces them to sell their fish for a pittance, which Waschke then re-sells at an enormous profit. In the meantime, a big-city teacher, Helmut Grundel, comes to the village and discovers Waschke's little game. Grundel wants to form a collective, so that the fishermen can become independent from Waschke and this makes Waschke into a dangerous enemy. When the young Heini, son of a dune-patrolman, discovers that canisters of liquour are being smuggled into Pommern under Waschke's watchful eye, Waschke threatens Heini, that he'll turn his father into the police, with the baseless accusation that daddy is behind the smuggling operation.