Donnie Brasco MOVIE



In 1978 New York City, Lefty Ruggiero, an aging long-time gangster in the Bonanno crime family, meets Joe Pistone, a young FBI agent who has gone undercover as jewel thief "Donnie Brasco". Lefty asks Donnie to sell a diamond he acquired from a strip club owner, but Donnie insists that it is fake. Insulted, Lefty takes Donnie to the man and demands an explanation. Donnie impresses Lefty by beating a confession out of the man and demanding his Porsche as repayment. Lefty teaches Donnie the rules of the Mafia and introduces him to members of his crime family including Sonny, Nicky, Paulie and rival crew leader Sonny Red. After the boss of the family is killed, Sonny receives a promotion, angering Lefty who feels his years of service make him more deserving. As the crew runs a series of successful shakedowns and hijackings in the city, Pistone infiltrates the crime family and collects more information for the FBI via wiretap recordings. He also ends up forming a genuine bond with Lefty, who struggles to make ends meet despite a long career in the mob.

Pistone is asked by his FBI supervisor to incorporate Miami-based undercover FBI agent Richie Gazzo into the Donnie Brasco operation. He convinces Sonny and his crew to set up an operation in Florida, and arranges a deal for Richie and Lefty to become partners in a club. Lefty hopes to impress local mob boss, Trafficante, by throwing a yacht party and convincing him to let Lefty relocate permanently. Sonny finds out about Lefty's plan and intercedes by ingratiating himself to Trafficante and officially taking Donnie under his wing. Lefty believes Donnie betrayed him and cuts ties with him until Lefty's son nearly dies of an overdose. In New York City, Pistone's marriage with his wife Maggie continues to worsen due to long absences while undercover, leaving her alone to look after their three daughters. Pistone's behavior increasingly becomes more like that of the criminal he pretends to be. In one of their final disputes, Donnie slaps Maggie.

On its opening day, the nightclub is raided by Miami police on orders from Trafficante, who colludes with Sonny Red to kick them out of Florida. Sonny Red and his two co-conspirators plan on killing Sonny's crew at their next meeting. Anticipating a setup, Sonny's crew execute the trio as they make their way to the meeting. Sonny also has Nicky killed for lying about a drug deal and suspecting he snitched on the crew in Florida. Donnie is brought in to help clean up and dispose of the bodies. Sonny becomes the new boss and orders Donnie to kill Sonny Red's son, Bruno, so that Donnie can officially become a member of their family. Lefty finds Bruno's hideout and takes Donnie there. Donnie tries to convince Lefty to escape the criminal life, but Lefty begins questioning his loyalty at gunpoint. The FBI intercedes before Donnie is forced to do anything, and the investigation ends.

FBI agents visit Sonny's hangout, and reveal Donnie's true identity to the crew. Knowing the fatal consequence that awaits him for unknowingly letting an FBI agent infiltrate the crime family, Lefty leaves behind his valuables and tells his wife that if Donnie calls to tell him "if it was going to be anyone, I'm glad it was him", before he is called to a meeting with his crew. With his family in attendance, Pistone attends a small private ceremony for his service, being awarded a medal and a $500 check.

The end title cards state that the evidence collected by Pistone in the Donnie Brasco operation led to over 200 indictments and over 100 convictions. Pistone lives with his wife under an assumed name in an undisclosed location, with a $500,000 open contact on his head.