New Yorker Adolpho Rollo (Buscemi) is your classic head-movie auteur. In his mind he's creating deathless classics of the screen. Back in the real world, he can't pay the rent on the downtown grothole he calls home. He knows he must be getting really desperate when he puts a script 'Unconditional Surrender' - 500 pages of angst-drenched gobbledygook - up for sale and attracts the attentions of one 'Joe' (Cassel), a warm-hearted minor gangland figure. Director Rockwell's affectionate screenplay pits innocence against experience, artist against philistine, but unexpectedly weighs sympathies towards Cassel's force-of-nature mob mentor, who's soon giving his po-faced protégé a life-lesson masterclass in generosity of spirit, wooing the girl-next-door (Beals), and seat-of-the-pants petty crime. Rockwell's wonderfully unassuming movie throws a big hug around youthful ambition, b/w filmstock, and the glowing screen charisma of Cassel. An unheralded gem.