In the 30's, in New York, the coffin of the leftist gangster Johnny Tempio is brought to the house of his older brother Ray for the wake of family and friends. Ray is a cold gangster that likes to read and is married to Jean. His brother Chez is a hot head that runs a bar and is married to Clara . Ray decides to revenge the murder of his younger brother and believes the gangster Gaspare is the one who killed Johnny. Meanwhile Chez has a breakdown with tragic consequences for the Tempio brothers.