A devilish old man, Leland Gaunt, moves to a small New England town and opens an antique shop, Needful Things. Gaunt offers an odd assortment of goods, each of which happens to be a cherished item or an object of desire of a local resident. Gaunt does not want money for his wares. Instead, he wants the townspeople to perform various pranks. But soon these actions escalate, and jealousy, spite and violence engulf the entire town.