Synopsis: High Crimes and Misdemeanors
Absolute power corrupts absolutely. President DAVID GALLAGHER spends his life abusing people in a number of ways: sexual assault, mental cruelty, political corruption, robbery, fraud and racketeering.
TV reporter, MOLLY HARLOW is sexually assaulted on her first flight on Air Force One. Because women who have accused President Gallagher in the past are discredited or silenced in mysterious ways, Molly is afraid to tell her story until she can find other women who have been assaulted so she can produce an expose and stop him.
Secret Service Agent ALAN MAGUIRE, is sworn to protect the President. As a witness to a few assaults in progress, Maguire risks his career by defending the women Gallagher brutalizes.
MARISA GALLAGHER, the First Lady, serves the President with divorce papers and in a rage, he beats her in the Oval Office until Agent Maguire enters the room and stops the assault. Marisa asks Molly to come to the hospital with a camera crew so she can tell her story. The interview enrages Gallagher, who considers Molly an enemy, and he orders her assassination.
HENRY JARREN, the Vice President, suffers personal and professional loss at the hands of Gallagher. Classmates at Harvard, Gallagher, Jarren and ISABEL FLORES, the new president of Mexico, share a tragic history of rape and betrayal that leads to a broken engagement between Jarren and Isabel and a deep hatred between Gallagher and Jarren.
Years after graduation, Gallagher, well-funded by the mob, emerges as a dark horse candidate to defeat Henry Jarren, the front runner in the presidential campaign. Gallagher is forced to appoint Jarren as the Vice President.
Mobster, CARLOS ISSA funds Gallagher’s campaign and loans him money to save his failing company. When he calls in Gallagher’s marker, the President can’t pay, so they plan a kidnap/ransom scheme to get the American government to pay.
Gallagher plans a diplomatic trip to Mexico, to welcome Isabel Flores to the world stage. With only four secret service agents and an undisclosed vacation destination, Gallagher is confident that the scheme will work and release him from the debt he owes Issa.
During the opening moments of the Mexican welcome ceremony, as approaches, President Gallagher collapses at the podium as he begins to speak. Immediately Gallagher is transported to the hospital via the Mexican presidential helicopter with his Secret Service agents and a Mexican doctor aboard.
The President is pronounced dead of an apparent massive heart attack by the Mexican doctor aboard the helicopter, and after checking the President’s pulse and respiration, Maguire redirects the helicopter to the American Embassy. When the pilot refuses, the agents force the helicopter to land in a school parking lot. The agents remove the President’s body before the helicopter takes off. Several minutes later, the helicopter crashes in the high winds of the hurricane.
Unable to make connections with cell or landlines crippled because of the hurricane, the agents camp in the school overnight, but the next morning after the hurricane has passed them,
they attempt to move the President’s body to the American Embassy. Enroute their “borrowed” school bus is hijacked by MIGUEL SOTO, a top aide to President Flores and also a henchman of Carlos Issa.
Still unable to communicate with their cell phones, the agents pursue a GPS signal emanating from Gallagher’s pocket, to Issa’s mansion. The agents conduct surveillance to see why someone would kidnap the President’s dead body. They watch as Gallagher appears, alive and well, but made up to appear tortured. A video crew hired by Issa, films a ransom plea to the U.S. Government.
The agents decide it will be best if they remain “dead” until they can fully investigate the situation unfolding before them. They turn off their cell phones.
Back in the U.S. the news reports of the helicopter crash and apparent death of all on board, trigger the 25th Amendment and Vice President Jarren is appointed Acting President.
Molly is extremely upset by Maguire’s “death” and is surprised and delighted to receive a top-secret request for help from him. She puts her investigative journalism research skills to the test as she positively identifies Issa, the connections between Issa and Gallagher, and follows a lurid crime filled association between the two. She enlists the help of TOM EVANS, an FBI agent, and the two of them fly to Mexico to review the findings with the Secret Service.
With the help of the Mexican police, the Secret Service and Evans arrest Gallagher and Issa while Molly’s TV crew captures the whole take-down. A subsequent search of Issa’s home produces enough hard evidence to bring both criminals to justice.
Aboard the government plane that had arrived in Mexico with the call sign of Air Force One, the Secret Service agents secure their prisoners and settle in for the flight to Washington, D.C. On the ground at the airport are Molly’s American TV crew, and law enforcement officials to take Gallagher and Issa into custody.
During their time together, Maguire and Molly feel a mutual attraction, but neither address it until the prisoners are carted away and they stand on the tarmac with their friends. Maguire stands with one of the Secret service agents while Molly is surrounded by her news crew and Tom Evans. She notices Maguire, breaks from the crowd, rushes to Maguire and kisses him.