Eddie Miller (Robert Forster) has been selling
jewelry to small stores in Pennsylvania for 30 years. After suffering a heart
attack, he is told that he is no longer “insurable” to carry a line worth over
a million dollars. The only way Eddie
can continue to work in the business he clings to for support is by breaking in
his own replacement, Bobby Walker (Donnie
Wahlberg), a brash kid whose every move rubs him the wrong way.
than a two week training course, Bobby’s only “road” experience has been
filling vending machines with pretzels.
Outrageous profanity spills from his mouth at the worst possible
moments. He falls asleep in a store. He shows more interest in romancing local
waitresses than jewelers.
After several days of putting up
with him, Eddie gets past Bobby’s arrogant exterior. Bobby accepts Eddie as his mentor. The two begin to form a tentative bond. Endless days of driving the PA countryside begin to break down
the decades that separate them. Bobby
admits to having cheated on the company’s “psychological” test. Eddie talks about the wife he lost to a
As a way of expressing his
gratitude, Bobby attempts the nearly impossible; to find a woman to fill the
void in Eddie’s life. When a couple of
Bobby’s conquests show no interest in the older man, Bobby resorts to a little
more unorthodox strategy; he introduces Eddie to Tina (Jasmine Guy), an old friend who runs a dowdy, backwoods
massage parlor called “the Altoona riding club.” But the sort of women Tina employs are not exactly what Eddie is
After a comic disaster at the club
the unexpected happens. Eddie begins to
loosen up. Tina introduces him to Katie (Bess Armstrong), a woman he can
relate to. But the road is
treacherous. The diamonds they carry
make Bobby and Eddie easy targets. And
as Eddie begins to take chances he becomes vulnerable to the sort of danger he
has spent his whole life trying to avoid.