"Tender Parasites" tells the love story of a couple who developed their own specific survival strategies.
Without a permanent home or steady job, they live in a self-made camp in the woods and simply use the municipal swimming pool, when they need to shower. Always short on cash, they make a living as providers of human services and take on the roles of sons, daughters, grandchildren or just friends by changing their identities - a new hair color or hairdo, new clothes, according to necessity. They notice what is missing in other people's lives and make a living of that by satisfying their employers' desires and giving them, what they need or what they lack.
Late summer, fall is around the corner. In a forest, Manu (26) and Jakob (25) are sleeping in a makeshift camp, just until they have some more money again. Jakob has just recently lost his job and Manu takes care of old Mrs. Katz, who is grateful and pays for this service.
On a gliding airfield Jakob provokes an accident, which catches the pilot's attention and awakens his sympathy. Martin, the pilot and a former manager, takes Jakob home and introduces him to his wife Claudia. Little by little, Jakob succeeds in getting accepted into the family. Jakob reminds Martin of his son Benjamin, who died a few years ago in an accident. He makes himself available - in place of Benjamin. An open-ended offer, immediately terminable.
All of a sudden Mrs. Katz dies - Manu is ready for moving on to another place but Jakob decides to stay with Martin as he feels that the job is not yet finished for him. In the circle of the family he increasingly feels well and secure. As Jakob more and more takes on the role of the deceased son and so grows apart from his girlfriend, Manu feels their lifestyle is going to be derailed. She decides to pay Jakob a visit and win him back.
From the soundtrack by Aurelio Valle with Nina Persson (The Cardigans):