A young Italian, living in Paris with his French wife, is about to become a father. Before the baby is born, Alberto must repay his father for every expense from his own birth until he left home. It's a family tradition, virtually a family curse. With little money in hand, he jumps on a train to Italy, the "Alberto Express," to return to his father. During the journey, he tries scheme after scheme to secure a windfall. En route, he also has a magical encounter with generations of his paternal ancestors, each of them adding again and again the sums owed them by their sons.