Wolf Larsen (Sebastian Koch) is the tyrannical Captain of the notorious seal hunting vessel, the Sea Wolf. While on the high seas, he takes on castaway Humphrey Van Wyden (Stephen Campbell Moore). But instead of abandoning him at the next harbour, Wolf puts the mild mannered literary critic to work and rules over him with an unyielding iron fist. Much to Wolf's surprise, the graft transforms Van Wyden into a hardened adversary - every bit as formidable as Wolf himself. But it's not until the appearance of Wolf brother, Death (Tim Roth), and Maud (Neve Campbell), the daughter of a rival ship owner that the dynamic truly explodes into life, leaving three men to war over love, duty, life and death.