This optimistic Italian slice-of-life drama chronicles a typical day in the lives of teenagers living in the grim suburbs of Rome. The story is set in the suburb of Tuscolano which is located near the Cinecitta studios and concerns a group of friends in their mid-teens. In the beginning, Lorenzo, the imaginative leader of the group convinces the rest of them one of them is terminally ill. The rest then become determined that the dying group member should have at least one fling with the local whore, that is if they can convince her into performing the merciful act. Two years pass and the youths are seen engaging in various endeavors ranging from petty theft to manual labor, or both. The boys are also seen pursuing romance. Troubles ensue when Lorenzo's brother disappears, and when one of the thieves is captured.
Aimlessly whiling away their days in the concrete environs of their dead-end suburbia, Vinz, Hubert, and Said -- a Jew, African, and an Arab -- give human faces to France's immigrant populations, their bristling resentment at their social marginalization slowly simmering until it reaches a climactic boiling point.