Edmond Dantes (James Caveziel) is a French sailor, who, along with his friend Fernand Mondego (Guy Pearce), goes ashore on the island of Elba to seek medical help for his ailing captain. The island is the prison of Napoleon and they are assumed to be French spies by the British holding the emperor, but Napoleon appears in time to save them and offer assistance to their captain. For his aid he asks Dantes one small favor of delivering a message to an old comrade of his. Unfortunately Dantes friend Mondego is less a friend and more a jealous and greedy young rich man out for his own benefit. Upon their return home Dantes finds time with his fiancee Mercedes (Dagmara Dominiczyk) cut short by officers come to arrest him for treason. Dantes protests his innocence, but has no recourse when the local magistrate sends him off to a distant deserted island prison. While there he befriends another captive Abbe Faria (Richard Harris) who not only helps him to plan escape, but gives him the map to an enormous treasure. From there Dantes must take back what is his and be restored to all that is just, while returning the lack of friendship to Mondego.