Paris, June 1998, the day of the World Cup semi-final between France and Italy. The city is smouldering with hatred. The fear in the air is palpable. Skinheads and Neo-Nazis are on the rampage. The backdrop against which Giacomo Flores, a reporter for a prominent Italian daily paper, is only moments away from meeting his grown-up, pregnant daughter, Francesca, and his wayward son, Gianni, and a little later, Louis his divorced wife’s third child, and most important of all for him, Pauline herself, though not until the evening, which is still hours away.
But these arrangements begin to unravel before any meeting can take place. There is a stabbing. Giacomo witnesses it and becomes involved with the police. Gianni sees his father being driven off with them. Francesca and Gianni do meet but, as violence erupts all around them, he hustles her away into a shop. He leaves her there, ostensibly to go and look for young Louis, but is drawn by the presumed revolutionary potential of the developing situation. He joins a small group of Kurds who are fleeing from both the skinheads and the police. For several hours, each member of the family lives out their individual responses to the turmoil all around them, yet in their thoughts they keep coming back to what should have been happening, and to the family’s broken history, and to whether or not any kind of reconciliation can be brought about, even now, after their thirteen-years’ estrangement.