Corky, a lesbian ex-con, is hired as a painter and plumber at an apartment building. She encounters Violet and Caesar, the couple who live next-door to the apartment she is renovating. While Caesar is gone, Violet deliberately drops an earring down the sink; the building owner sends Corky to retrieve it. Violet admits she dropped the earring on purpose and starts to seduce Corky. They are interrupted by Caesar's arrival and Corky returns to work. When she leaves for the day, Violet follows her to her truck. They go to Corky's apartment and have sex. The next morning, Violet tells Corky that Caesar is a money launderer for the Mafia and they have been together for five years.
Later, Violet overhears Caesar and his mob associates beating and torturing Shelly, a man who has been skimming money from the business. Upset by the violence, Violet seeks solace from Corky. She tells Corky that she wants to make a new life for herself, but that she needs her help. Knowing that Caesar will bring the nearly $2 million that Shelly embezzled back to the apartment, the two women hatch a scheme to steal the money. After Shelly is shot and killed by Johnnie, the son of Mafia boss Gino Marzzone, Caesar returns to the apartment with a bag of bloody money. Angry at Johnnie for killing Shelly in a fit of rage and splattering blood everywhere, Caesar proceeds to wash, iron and hang the money to dry.
Violet explains to Corky that Caesar and Johnnie hate each other, and that Gino and Johnnie will be coming to pick up the money from Caesar. Corky devises a plan: when Caesar has finished counting the money, he will shower to unwind. While he does, Violet will purposely drop a bottle of Glenlivet scotch that Gino prefers and tell Caesar that she is going to buy more. As she leaves the apartment, Corky will enter, steal the money from a briefcase, and leave. Violet will then return with the scotch and tell Caesar that she just saw Johnnie leave. Suspicious, Caesar will check the briefcase, find the money gone, and assume Johnnie has taken it. Corky and Violet think Caesar will be forced to flee because Gino will assume he has been robbed by Caesar, not his son Johnnie.
When Caesar finds the money gone, he realizes Gino will think he stole it if he runs and decides to get the money back from Johnnie. Panicking, Violet threatens to leave, but Caesar forces her to stay, suspecting she and Johnnie may have stolen the money and framed him. Corky waits next-door with the money while Gino and Johnnie arrive. After Johnnie flirts with Violet and taunts him, Caesar pulls out a gun and tells Gino that his son stole the money. He kills Gino, Johnnie and Roy, Gino's bodyguard. Caesar tells Violet that they must find the money, dispose of the bodies, and pretend Gino and Johnnie never arrived lest their mob pals discover the men are missing. Unable to find the money at Johnnie's apartment, Caesar telephones Mickey, a mob buddy, telling him that Gino has yet to arrive.
After discovering Corky and Violet stole the money, Caesar ties them up, threatens to torture them, and demands to know where it is. When Mickey arrives at the apartment, Caesar makes a deal with Violet to help him stall. Violet calls their landline from Johnnie's cell phone and convinces Caesar to feign a conversation with Gino explaining that he and Johnnie are in the hospital after a car accident. The ruse fools Mickey, who leaves for the hospital. Corky tells Caesar she has hidden the money in the next-door apartment and he goes to retrieve it. Violet escapes and calls Mickey, telling him that Caesar stole the money and forced her to keep quiet. Corky tries to stop Caesar from taking the money, but he beats her violently. Violet arrives and holds Caesar at gunpoint; she informs him Mickey is on his way and that he should run while he can. When Caesar refuses, Violet kills him.
Later, Mickey, who believes Violet's story, tells her that he will find Caesar. Mickey wants Violet to be his girlfriend, but she tells him that she needs a clean break—which she makes by driving off hand-in-hand with Corky.
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