Doctor Parnassus (Christopher Plummer) runs a traveling theater troupe. Their stage show involves a magical mirror which sucks people in to the world of imagination, where they are ultimately forced to choose between enlightenment and darkness. Parnassus reveals that most of his life is directed by a series of deals he made with the devil, who goes by the name of Mr. Nick (Tom Waits). Included among these deals is that Mr. Nick will take possession of the soul of Doctor Parnassus’s daughter Valentina (Lily Cole) on her 16th birthday. Parnassus and Mr. Nick make a new bet to see who can collect five souls first. The stage show’s newest member, Tony (Heath Ledger), lures new audience members in to choose. When Tony himself enters the mirror, he takes on different appearances (Johnny Depp, Jude Law, Colin Farrell) and tries to help Parnassus and Valentina win over Mr. Nick.