Guns, booze, fast women--timeworn gangster film cliches given a fresh twist in this, the third offering from Joel and Ethan Coen. A gang war is brewing in the anonymous town run by Leo (Finney), a tough but sentimental Irishman, and his acerbic right-hand man, Tom Reagan (Byrne). The
Italians are the new kids on the block, and they're sensitive about it. Johnny Caspar (Polito) is particularly thin-skinned, and he's mad as hell because small-time chiseler Bernie Bernbaum (Turturro) is cutting in on his gambling action. Caspar wants Bernie murdered, but Leo won't hear of it;
he's promised Bernie's tough-as-nails sister, Verna (Harden), that he'll look out for her bro...