LA in the 50's: someone's killing imprisoned mob boss Mickey Cohen(Paul Guilfoyle)'s gang. The police, led by Captain Dudley, convince wiseguys from Jersey, Cleveland, and elsewhere to go home. Rich developer, Pierce Patchett(David Strathairn), runs a stable of high-class hookers who are ringers for movie stars. The plot to replace Cohen blindsides three plainclothes cops: White(Russell Crowe) watched his father beat his mother to death then vanish, he punishes abusers with quick violence; Exley(Guy Pearce)'s father was a hero cop killed mysteriously, he seeks justice by the book; Vicennes(Kevin Spacey), a clothes horse, consults for a Dragnet-like TV show. Will they escape corruption and murder, will they find their own morality?