In the aftermath of a job gone awry, an American hitman retreats to the Italian countryside, where he befriends a local priest and strikes up an unexpected romance while awaiting the details of his next assignment.
Jack (George Clooney) is lucky to be alive after his Swedish assignment went sour, and he knows that it's only a matter of time before his luck runs out.
Not eager to tempt fate again, Jack arrives in a small Italian town and takes a job assembling a weapon for the mysterious Mathilde (Thekla Reuten).
During this uncharacteristically peaceful interlude, Jack befriends kindly clergyman Father Benedetto (Paolo Bonacelli), and connects with pretty local Clara (Violante Placido).
But in the process of reaching out for a little human contact, Jack is making himself more vulnerable than ever.
THE AMERICAN was adapted for the screen from the novel A VERY PRIVATE GENTLEMAN by author Martin Booth.