Giovanni Manzoni (Robert DeNiro) was once one of the most feared and respected mob bosses in New York. Times have certainly changed. For some unexplained reason Manzoni turned stoolie for the FBI and was moved into the Witness Relocation Program under the supervision of veteran agent Robert Stansfield (Tommy Lee Jones). Now he’s Fred Blake, a nondescript writer living in a small town in Normandy, France with his wife Maggie (Michelle Pfeiffer), son Warren (John D’Leo), and daughter Bella (Dianna Agron). The family hates being so far removed from their familiar Brooklyn neighborhood and all of their friends and relatives, but they try to make the best of a lousy situation.
Their efforts don’t last though; unable to deal with the dual pressures of maintaining a false identity and the inquisitive, somewhat hostile townspeople, the Blakes soon revert to their old ways of violence and corruption, with Stansfield working desperately to keep them in line so their cover isn’t blown. Fred’s obsession with getting rid of the brown water that runs through the pipes of their quaint French home and Warren’s escalating criminal behavior at school eventually bring down the full wrath of Don Luchese (Stan Carp), the imprisoned rival Mafia boss Fred snitched on. The don dispatches a team of heavily armed assassins to Normandy to make the Blakes a blood-stained memory. Unable to depend on further protection from Stansfield and the other Feds, Fred and his family must show the mob back home that a simple name change doesn’t make the Blakes any less dangerous than before.