Set in the 1960s, Billy Covington (Robert Downey Jr.) is a big-city chopper pilot who reports traffic conditions fora radio station, he then loses his license due to a traffic incident on the freeway. Longing to do some real flying, Billy is recruited by the government for a secret and safe (he thinks) civilian airline in Laos. Knowing he'll get his licence back and thus be able to do what he loves the most, Billy agrees to sign up. Upon arrival in Laos he soon befriends ace pilot, Gene Ryack (Mel Gibson) and realizes that Air America is a covert CIA operation using civilian pilots to set up a second front in Laos and Cambodia. Air America 'doesn't exist', or at least that's what Nixon tells the citizens at home. Billy soon learns real gunfire is being aimed at his plane and that it is food, money, ammunitions, napalm and drugs he's transporting. Based upon Christopher Robbins' book of the same name, 'Air America' tells the story of these brave men who flew hundreds of flights every day and faced death at any time, with their motto "Anything, Anytime, Anywhere".