Ted Andrews (Gary Busey) is a man on the edge. Not only has his marriage collapsed but the ex-Vietnam search-and-destroy expert finds his Florida real estate empire tottering. Desperate for cash he is forced to sell his only remaining asset a 110 foot motor yacht, Barracuda. Ted arranges to deliver the Barracuda to its new owner in Australia accompanied by his girlfriend Laura (Nancy Mulford) and his two young children. A few hours out of Florida, a speedboat pursues the ship. Laura systematically shoots and kills the Barracuda's crew and other passengers and takes aim at Ted. Before she can fire, he is struck by a bullet from the speedboat and tumbles into the sea. The children are spared death and held hostage by the mercenaries, led by Jack Wilcox (Ray Sharkey), proving to be a perfect cover for their scheme. Ted is rescued and flown to a mainland hospital, unaware of any involvement by Laura. In Harare, Zimbabwe, Wilcox and Laura meet with Philip O'Connor, an arms broker purchasing weapons for a revolt in Madagascar. Wilcox is to pick up the weapons and deliver them using the barracuda, but before he leaves Zimbabwe he sees Ted and Sandy's plea for help on television. Ted and Sandy fly to Africa desperately hoping to find their children and prove that they have become a family with unbeatable resolve.