A group of friends attempt to successfully complete a list of tasks assigned to them as the “Shovel List” by their dead friend.
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The story takes place in alternative America where the blacks are members of social elite, and whites are inhabitants of inner city ghettos. Louis Pinnock is a white worker in a chocolate factory, loving husband and father of two children. While delivering a package for black CEO Thaddeus Thomas, he is mistaken for a voyeur and, as a result, loses his job, gets beaten by black cops and his family gets evicted from their home. Desperate Pinnock takes a gun and kidnaps Thomas, demanding justice.
Years after their teenage daughter’s death, Lois and Doug Riley, an upstanding Indiana couple, are frozen by estranging grief. Doug escapes to New Orleans on a business trip. Compelled by urgencies he doesn’t understand, he insinuates himself into the life of an underage hooker, becoming her platonic guardian.
Imagine leaving everything you have, everyone you know, everyone you love, behind. Having to cross half a continent on foot, atop freight trains, inside truck trailers. Swimming across wild rivers. Crossing borders illegally. Walking across the Arizona desert. Being shot at, robbed and beaten. Raped. Surviving it all. Crossing into the USA, after life in the poorest parts of Central America. Succeeding. Now. In the “promised” land, you don’t belong, legally; or socially. You don’t understand the language. No one knows you arrived, no one knows you exist. Imagine…. being Nobody. Then imagine a bag being shoved over your head. Getting your clothes stripped from you. Getting tossed in a closed room with a dozen others. A loaded gun is pointed at your head. You are forced to call back home and beg for money, a ransom for your life.
Jack Casey (‘Kevin Bacon’ )used to be a hot-shot stock market whiz kid. After a disastrous professional decision, his life in the fast lane is over. He loses his nerve and joins a speed delivery firm which relies on bicycles to avoid traffic jams of San Francisco, is attracted to a fellow bicycler, Terri, and befriends Hector, a budding entrepreneur. Can Jack regain his nerve and his self-respect, and rebuild his life on a more sound basis?