Vienna, 1930s. Victor Kaufmann, the son of a wealthy cosmopolitan Jewish couple who own an art gallery, shares with his best friend Rudi a well-kept family secret: a drawing by Michelangelo that was believed lost. In turn, Rudi reveals that he is a member of the Nazi party and is hoping that Austria’s annexation to Germany will improve his career chances with the Nazis. As it gets increasingly unsafe for the Jews in Austria, the Kaufmanns transfer their estate to Victor's girlfriend to protect it from being confiscated, while Rudi, a Nazi, receives orders from Berlin to seize the Kaufmann's Michelangelo drawing, Unable to protect his friends, Rudi watches helplessly as the Kaufmanns are sent to a concentration camp. However, years later, when the Michelangelo drawing is to be presented to the Duce as a gift from the Fuhrer in order to seal their alliance with Italy, the drawing is determined to be a fake. Rudi is then given an order to retrieve Victor from the concentration camp for an interrogation to determine the whereabouts of the real Michelangelo.