In the early 18th century, England is at war with France. A frail Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) occupies the throne and shows little interest in governing, preferring eccentric activities such as racing ducks and playing with her 17 rabbits. Her confidante, adviser, and furtive lover Sarah Churchill (Rachel Weisz) governs the country in her stead while tending to Anne's ill health and mercurial temper. When a new servant Abigail Masham (Emma Stone) arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah. Sarah takes Abigail under her wing and Abigail sees a chance at a return to her aristocratic roots.