Based on the Broadway play, Butterflies Are Free is a sensitive, touching comedy about a blind young man, Don Baker (Edward Albert) who is determined to make a life for himself despite his handicap. Leaving the security of his parents' home, he takes an apartment in San Francisco, promising his overprotective mother (Eileen Heckart, who won a Best Supporting Actress Academy Award for this role) that if in three months he can't make it on his own, he'll return home. His first acquaintance is his next door neighbor, Jill Tanner (Goldie Hawn), an eccentric aspiring actress. Jill is charmed by Don's quick sense of humor and they become fast friends and lovers. Their relationship is threatened by Don's mother's intrusions and by Jill's lifestyle when she is offered a part in a play by a theatrical producer who wants Jill to perform offstage as well as on.