Neil McCauley (Robert De Niro) is a thief... an expert thief... one of the best. His philosophy in life - become attached to nothing in life that you can't walk away from in 30 seconds if you spot the "Heat" around the corner. His crew of criminals is a high-tech outfit pulling off professional jobs that impress even the likes of Detective Vincent Hanna (Al Pacino). But Hanna, a man driven through life only by his work, becomes obsessed, at the expense of his private life, with bringing McCauley down. As McCauley's crew prepare for the score of a lifetime, and Hanna's team tries to bring him in, the two find that they are challenged by the greatest minds on the opposite side of the law that either one has ever encountered.