Picture Claire follows the kinetic adventures of Claire Beaucage through twenty-four frantic hours. After escaping from dubious characters in Montreal she arrives in Toronto only to be thrust into an array of situations well beyond her control. An intended reunion with a one-night stand forces Claire to put her entire life in focus.
Picture Claire tells the story of Claire Beaucage (Juliette Lewis), a feisty and independent young woman who must become an unlikely heroine in order to survive the first time she’s ever been away from home. Following the torching of her Montreal apartment by a violent motorcycle gang seeking revenge, she packs what little she has and seeks a more serene existence in Toronto. A few obstacles stand in the way of her dream – she doesn’t speak English and her only contact there is photographer Billy Stewart (Kelly Harms), the one-night stand who never expected to see her again.
Despite Claire’s language impediment she makes it from the train station to Billy’s apartment only to find he’s not home. What she does find is a flyer taped to the door regarding his upcoming photography exhibit. She tears it down and leaves the apartment hoping to find him at the gallery – providing she can get directions of course.
Lily Warden (Gina Gershon), lives in the apartment below Billy’s. She’s an attractive woman who has given up a stable career at a brokerage house for the potentially dangerous job as a smuggler. Lily is making a brief stop at her apartment before meeting Eddie Barlow (Mickey Rourke), her dubious partner who wants to give her more than just her share.
Claire stops for a donut and directions at the local coffee shop to find the attendant less than helpful and a crude customer trying to molest her. She retreats into the bathroom to compose herself after spilling coffee on her shirt during the encounter. Lily enters the shop to meet Eddie – the same man who molested Claire.
With hapless Claire still in the bathroom chaos ensues leaving Eddie dead, the loot gone, Lily on the run and a very shaken donut lady. Claire exits the shop and is observed by the goons who work for Eddie – Culver (Peter Stebbings) and Laramie (Callum Keith Rennie). Oblivious of what has transpired and the fact she is mistakenly connected to the crime, she continues on her quest.
Claire manages to locate the gallery and proceeds to connect with Billy only to find their one-night together on display for all to see and Billy no where to be found. Devastated, she explodes with rage and returns to the apartment to confront him. In desperation she breaks in and finds evidence of another woman in Billy’s life. Unable to return to Montreal and no longer with a viable connection in Toronto, she contemplates her next move.
Unfortunately, her next move turns out to be hanging from a balcony when Billy’s girlfriend Cynthia unexpectedly shows up.
Lily doesn’t fare much better as she must avoid detection from Eddie’s goons and the police. When her life inadvertently collides with Claire’s they each become the only link that can save the other – but first they must actually meet.