In a Soviet Young Pioneer camp, Dynin, the administrator is afraid that the children may succumb to harmful accidents and that he will be deemed responsible. He believes that accidents happen when formal rules are violated. Hence, he believes, everything must be done strictly according to formal instructions and regulations. One boy, Kostya Inochkin, (Viktor Kosykh) breaks one of the cardinal rules by swimming out alone to an island instead of swimming in the specially designated swimming area, supervised by staff. As a result, Inochkin is expelled from camp and is sent home. Inochkin is afraid that if his grandmother, with whom he lives, discovers that he has been expelled, she will die from sorrow, so instead of going home he returns to camp illegally. He hides but is discovered by some of the other children, who start helping him to stay, outsmarting the adults. Adults are added to the plot later and also oppose Dynin's strict regime. Finally Dynin is removed from office and expelled to the town. The film's final scenes show the joy of freedom without Dynin's restrictions, kids and adults swim and even unrealistically jump over the river (although this is presumably a fantasy). The film also makes jokes about a quip popular in Nikita Khrushchev's time - "corn - queen of fields".
In the middle of the making, there was a cable to stop filming, but it was still finished. The movie released to screen soon after dismissal of Nikita Khrushchev as a party leader. According to some sources this allowed the film to be screened. Others say that the leader himself allowed the movie. 13.4 million viewers saw it in the USSR, and the movie received a positive critical acclaim. In UK the movie had the title No Holiday for Inochkin.