Mob boss Paul Vitti narrates a brief history of the Mafia: in the wake of Albert Anastasia's death, the dispute over who among Vito Genovese, Carlo Gambino and Joe Bananas will ascend to mob supremacy results in the Apalachin Meeting in upstate New York. The meeting is raided by the FBI, and the Mafia does not call a summit again until the present day.
Vitti and his friend Dominic are discussing the upcoming meeting and the Mafia's present-day problems. Dominic warns Vitti to look out for Primo Sindone. Gunmen drive past and kill Dominic.
Psychiatrist Ben Sobel is facing his own problems: his son from his first marriage listens to his sessions, his patients are not challenging enough, and his wedding to Laura MacNamara in Miami is coming soon. Sobel rear-ends a car belonging to Vitti and the trunk pops open, revealing a man bound and gagged inside, which Sobel and his son do not notice because they are arguing. Jelly, one of Vitti's henchmen, takes the blame, but Sobel gives Jelly his business card in case he changes his mind about compensation.