Oliver Stone directed this John Ridley screenplay adapted from Ridley's novel Stray Dogs. A drifter (Sean Penn) eludes Las Vegas collection agents and arrives in a small town where he decides to linger after his car has a breakdown. Here he gets involved with the locals, including an unhappily married couple -- a businessman (Nick Nolte) and his seductive, femme-fatale wife (Jennifer Lopez). A trailer trash teen (Claire Danes) also approaches him in an effort to get away from her abusive boyfriend (Joaquin Phoenix). Tensions in the town escalate, eventually leading to murder. Stone wanted to change the title from U-Turn back to Stray Dogs but encountered a problem with Akira Kurosawa, who felt it was too similar to his detective classic, Stray Dog (1949) with Toshiro Mifune.
by Bhob Stewart synopsis