Adaptation of controversial French author Michel Houellebecq's novel Les Particules élémentaires. Bruno (Moritz Bleibtreu) and Michael (Christian Ulmen) half-brothers who are very different from each other. They both had an unusual childhood because their mother was a hippie, instead growing up with their grandmothers and in boarding schools. The film implys their upbringing has led them to develop complex and unsatisfactory sex lives. While Bruno can only find satisfaction in meaningless sex with prostitutes, Michael seems to reject sex altogether, focusing his attention instead on his work in genetics. When Michael meets Annabelle (Franka Potente), a woman who turns into the love of his life, he seems to have the chance at a normal relationship, but one that might threaten the world-changing impact of his scientific studies. In the credits the viewer is led to believe that Michael was awarded the nobel prize and Bruno spent the rest of his life in psychiatric institutes.