Chicago evidence detective Wayne Dobie (De Niro) is a shy, soft-spoken man who hasn't drawn his gun in fifteen years. His fellow cops have jokingly nicknamed him "Mad Dog" for his lack of guts. But when Dobie inadvertently saves the life of Frank Milo (Murray), a local gangster and loan shark who moonlights as a stand-up comic, he becomes the unwilling recipient of an unusual thank you present: a beautiful young bartender named Glory (Thurman) for one week.
Before the week is out, the two have fallen deeply in love, making for a potentially murderous showdown with Milo. Now Dobie must at last live up to his "Mad Dog" nickname or it will be "no guts, no glory" in this unique and heartwarming comedy.