Over the summer of 1976, thirty-six bombs detonate in the heart of Cleveland while a turf war raged between Irish mobster Danny Greene and the Italian mafia. Based on a true story, kill the Irishman chronicles Greene’s heroic rise from a tough Cleveland neighborhood to become an enforcer in the local mob. Turning the tables on loan shark Shondor Birns and allying himself with gangster John Nardi, Greene stops taking orders from the mafia and pursues his own power. Surviving countless assassination attempts from the mob and killing off anyone who went after him in retaliation, Danny Greene’s infamous invincibility and notorious fearlessness eventually led to the collapse of mafia syndicates across the U.S. and also earned him the status of the man the mob couldn’t kill.
Mike Manadoro (Kevin Zegers), a young man from the Bay Ridge area of Brooklyn, wants nothing more than to leave the old neighborhood and study photography at a prestigious Manhattan university. The problem is Mike’s father Vinny (Vincent D’Onofrio), a retired sanitation worker-turned-bookie, is on disability and does not have the financial means to support his son’s dream.
When local mob boss Tony (Titus Welliver) offers Mike a well-paid job delivering a mysterious package, he thinks he has found his ticket to freedom. Mike soon saves enough money to enter college and there he meets the beautiful and intellectual Kathy Popovich (Sophia Bush). She is the complete opposite of every girl he has ever met, but in order to keep her around, he needs to hide his new gig.
However, when Nicky Shades (Eddie Cahill), Mike’s tough childhood buddy Nicky Shades gets back from Afghanistan and is looking for a job, trouble ensues. In this world of small-time crime, friendship and loyalty are in short supply. The stakes only get higher as it becomes clear Mike must quickly decide which way his life is going to turn, and that no matter what he chooses, there will be consequences.
Tango is an undercover officer on a narcotics detail that forces him to choose between duty and friendship. Having been to hell and back, he wants out, but the powers that be won’t let him quit. Family-man Sal is a detective tempted by greed and corruption. He can barely make ends meet, and now his wife has an illness that threatens the life of their unborn twins. Eddie is nearing retirement age and has long since lost his dedication to his job as a cop. He wakes up every morning trying to come up with a reason to go on living…and he can’t think of one. Fate brings the three men to the same Brooklyn housing project as each takes the law into his own hands. [Synopsis courtesy of Sundance Film Festival]
After leaving town following the death of his father, young music prodigy, Jacob Heckum (Anton Yelchin), returns to his desolate hometown only to discover that Buddy (Chris Marquette), the child-like brother he left behind now works for a drug gang. The gang’s ruthless leader (Vincent D’Onofrio) has twisted his simple mind and manipulated him into a killer… a surrogate son who blindly does as he is told. Jacob is drowned in guilt for having abandoned his brother and realizes the only way to save him from his new fraternity is to join them.