Salvatore "Sal" Fragione is the Italian owner of a pizzeria in Brooklyn. A neighborhood local, Buggin' Out, becomes upset when he sees that the pizzeria's Wall of Fame exhibits only Italian actors. Buggin' Out believes a pizzeria in a black neighborhood should showcase black actors, but Sal disagrees. The wall becomes a symbol of racism and hate to Buggin' Out and to other people in the neighborhood, and tensions rise.
Seen-it-all New York detective Frank Keller is unsettled - he has done twenty years on the force and could retire, and he hasn't come to terms with his wife leaving him for a colleague. Joining up with an officer from another part of town to investigate a series of murders linked by the lonely hearts columns he finds he is getting seriously and possibly dangerously involved with Helen, one of the main suspects.
Set during the unsettling disappearances in Buenos Aires during the dictatorship of the 1970s, the film involves theater director Carlos Rueda and his wife Cecilia. Shortly after Cecilia writes an editorial commentary questioning the mysterious abductions, she is herself abducted and taken into police custody.