New York detective Nick Conklin is a down on his luck, under investigation by Internal Affairs. He and his friend Charlie witness a brutal murder at the meeting between Mafia and Yakuza chieftains. After arresting a suspect named Sato, they are assigned to escort him to Osaka, where they promptly hand him over to his fellow gangsters, disguised as cops. Determined to pursue the escaped suspect, Nick and Charlie besiege the Osaka police for help. They are grudgingly granted observer status--no guns--and a minder: assistant detective Masahiro Matsumoto. Meanwhile, escaped suspect Sato has plans to bypass the traditional Yakuza hierarchy and go straight to the top, unless the New Yorkers can convince the Japanese to help them stop him.