Gene Watson (Johnny Depp) je računovođa koji se vraća kući sa sprovoda bivšoj ženi. Tada upozna g. Smitha (Christopher Walken) i gđu Jones (Roma Maffia) koji mu otmu kćer Lynn (Courtney Chase) te mu daju pištolj, šest metaka i karticu koja će mu omogućiti pristup stanovitom hotelu. Zatim ga obavijeste da mora ubiti guvernerku Eleanor Grant (Marsha Mason) ili će mu ubiti kćer. Watson pokušava upozoriti gđu Grant te otkriva da urota potječe od onih kojima ona najviše vjeruje.
A stranger pulled into a deadly scheme races against time to save his daughter in this thriller. Gene Watson (Johnny Depp) is an accountant who comes to L.A. with his ten-year-old daughter Lynn (Courtney Chase) to attend a funeral. On the street, Gene and Lynn are pulled aside by Mr. Smith (Christopher Walken) and Ms. Jones (Roma Maffia), who flash what look like police badges and usher them into a van. Gene soon discovers that hes been kidnapped, and his captors have an unusual demand . if Gene does not murder Gov. Eleanor Grant (Marsha Mason) within 75 minutes, his daughter will be killed. Gene now has just an hour and a quarter to tip off the authorities, spare Gov. Grant, and find out what Smith and Jones are trying to do, along with saving his daughters life. He finds a much-needed ally in one-legged shoe-shine man Huey (Charles S. Dutton). Most of the action in Nick of Time occurs in "real time," meaning that the passage of time on screen matches that of real life, as the frequent shots of clocks and watches will attest.