Elwood P. Dowd, a wealthy tippler’s sunny philosophy and inebriated antics were tolerated by most of the citizenry. That is, until Elwood begins claiming that he sees a "pooka" (a mischievous Irish spirit), which has taken the form of a man-sized bunny named Harvey. Although everyone is certain that Elwood has finally lost his mind, Harvey’s presence begins to have magically positive effects on the townsfolk, with the exception of Elwood’s own sister Veta who, ironically, can also occasionally see Harvey. A snooty socialite, Veta is determined to marry off her daughter, Myrtle and Elwood’s lunacy is interfering. When Veta attempts to have Elwood committed to an insane asylum, however, the result is that she is accidentally admitted instead of her brother.